How to get involved
There is a good chance an older adult in your life or neighbourhood might be feeling disconnected. Below, you’ll find information that can help you make a positive difference in their lives.
In the How Calgarians can get involved section, you’ll find practical advice and suggestions for making and facilitating connections with older adults.
How organizations can get involved
Partners campaign toolkit
Use the Partners Campaign Toolkit to promote awareness of the issues and resources.
Social media and web
Download and share the following social media and web material to help raise awareness about social isolation:
- Facebook profile image frame
- Shareable social media image 1
- Shareable social media image 2
- Shareable social media image 3
- Shareable social media image 4
- Shareable social media image 5
- Shareable social media image 6
- Shareable social media image 7
- Shareable social media image 8
- Shareable social media image 9 (square)
- Shareable social media image 10 (square)
- Shareable social media image 11 (square)
Posters and postcards
Download and print the following posters and postcard to help raise awareness about social isolation:
- Poster 1 - 8.5 x 11 inches
- Poster 1 - 8.5 x 11 inches (with crop marks)
- Poster 1 - 11 x 17 inches
- Poster 1 - 11 x 17 inches (with crop marks)
- Poster 2 - Actions - 8.5 x 11 inches
- Poster 2 - Actions - 8.5 x 11 inches (with crop marks)
- Poster 2 - Actions - 11 x 17 inches
- Poster 2 - Actions - 11 x 17 inches (with crop marks)
- Postcard (with crop marks)
How Calgarians can get involved
Good neighbours. Good health.
There are obvious reasons why we choose to live near and next to other people. Communities have a long history of taking care of each other, sharing time and resources, and lending an ear or a hand when a neighbour needs one.
Today, even in a densely populated city centre, an older adult without a vibrant social network is more likely than others to suffer from depression and cognitive decline.
The act and anticipation of socializing can improve health outcomes for older adults, marginalized older adults, and those socially isolated by their life circumstances, an emergency, or a global pandemic.
Responding begins by understanding and talking about the issue. The conversation about loneliness and social isolation experienced by older adults needs to be louder and ongoing. Together, we can support our collective well-being and mental health by staying connected. Here are some ideas on how you can reach out to neighbours who may be socially isolated:
- Commit to 3 simple acts of kindness:
- Greet your neighbours regularly:
- Saying hi to your neighbour with a friendly hello, or wave connects you and allows for deeper conversations in the future.
- It gets you familiar with people in your neighbourhood and you’re more likely to notice if something changes .
- Create positive messages and drawings using sidewalk chalk:
- For example, draw a picture and encourage others to add to it. Do this with family and friends and cover a large area of sidewalk.
- Write campaign messages such as “Staying connected never gets old” .
- Be a friendly neighbour and check in on neighbours who are older adults:
- Chatting often gives you a chance to understand their interests and the activities they do regularly .
- Understanding their needs helps you to recognize the kind of offers they might appreciate. For example, bringing in or putting out garbage, cutting grass, picking up groceries or going for a walk.
- Be a walking buddy:
- Invite an older adult to join you and use this time to share interests. You could agree to do this regularly. Make sure you are following current public health guidance.
- You could connect when you walk your dog around the same time in your neighbourhood.
- Deliver a flower to your neighbours:
- Buy a dozen flowers (or pick them from your garden) to deliver to neighbours’ homes.
- Let them know about the Social Isolation Awareness Campaign and share any materials.
- Offer to have a virtual meal or distanced drink with your neighbour.
- Connect over a hobby or interest:
- Talk about an interest or hobby you have in common such as gardening, art, music, cooking.
- Consider swapping books, movies and puzzles by leaving them on each other’s porches or at the end of the driveway.
- Celebrating special occasions, such as Neighbour day and Canada day.
- Come up with your own ideas to stay connected!
The Age-Friendly Calgary social isolation awareness campaign is a collaboration between The City and community partners as part of the Age-Friendly Calgary initiative.
Contact Age-Friendly Calgary by email: firstname.lastname@example.org