MP Mike Bossio and Rev. Stephen Brown of St. Andrews Presbyterian Church in Tweed break ground on a new garden funded through the Government of Canada’s New Horizons for Seniors Program
Seniors make significant and valuable contributions to their families, communities and country. Through the New Horizons for Seniors Program (NHSP), the Government of Canada continues to meet the needs of seniors by supporting initiatives that help them stay active and involved in their communities.
Today, Mike Bossio, MP for Hastings—Lennox and Addington made an announcement on behalf of Hon. Filomena Tassi, Minister of Seniors, for an investment of $17,619 for two projects that will help seniors stay active and involved in their community.
- St. Andrews Presbyterian Church in Tweed will receive $12,619 for the project “Seniors Growing Food and Friends for Life,” which will connect seniors in the community and teach them and other community members valuable gardening skills. This program will help maintain the community gardens and provide fresh produce for the most vulnerable in the community.
- Thomasburg United Church will receive $5,000 for a commercial dishwasher that will reduce the workload for their aging membership.
Funding for these projects is being provided by the Government of Canada’s New Horizons for Seniors Program (NHSP), which fosters social inclusion and engagement of seniors by encouraging them to share their knowledge, skills and experience to stay active and engaged.
Budget 2019 also proposes an additional $100 million to the New Horizons for Seniors Program.
“I am very happy to see New Horizons for Seniors funding going to support two of our rural churches. This type of funding is so important to the sustainability of rural communities like ours as they age. The Government of Canada is providing a wide range of opportunities for seniors to participate in meaningful activities that nurture their personal growth and foster community vitality.”
– Mike Bossio, Member of Parliament for Hastings—Lennox and Addington
“St. Andrew’s Tweed is tackling climate change, senior loneliness, and food insecurity by creating a pollinator and vegetable gardens on the Church grounds. The hope is that all people will find a spot and feel welcome in the garden, working together on the common goal of food production.”
– Kathryn Primrose, Environmental Team, St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church.
“On behalf of the Board of Stewards of Thomasburg United Church, we would like to say that we are very grateful for the receipt of the New Horizons Grant for Seniors. Our aging membership will appreciate the new dishwasher as it will reduce the workload involved with our community events.”
– Board of Stewards of Thomasburg United Church
“Seniors are the pillars of our communities. By supporting community-based projects like these, we are taking action to ensure that seniors have a strong presence in communities across Canada and that they receive the recognition, respect and admiration they deserve.”
– The Honourable Filomena Tassi, Minister of Seniors
- Every year organizations are invited to apply for NHSP community-based funding through a call for proposals. The project funding announced today was approved as part of a call for proposals that launched on May 7, 2018, and closed on June 22, 2018.
- Community-based projects are eligible to receive up to $25,000 in grant funding and, as of this year, up to $5,000 in new small grants funding for organizations that have not received funding within the last five years.
- A total of approximately $35 million has been approved across Canada for NHSP community-based projects in 2018–2019.
- Community-based project funding supports activities that engage seniors and address one or more of the program’s five objectives: volunteering, mentoring, expanding awareness of elder abuse, social participation and capital assistance.
Background – Letter from St. Andrews about their project
Senior’s Growing Food and Friends for Life
St. Andrew’s Tweed is tackling climate change, senior loneliness, and food insecurity by creating a pollinator and vegetable gardens on the Church grounds.
In 2018, pollinator and small vegetable gardens planted at the Church were met with considerable enthusiasm. People enjoyed being able to stop and chat at the garden, work in the earth, water plants, observe butterflies, and, of course, take home some fresh produce.
A New Horizons Seniors Program grant has been received to develop the vegetable and pollinator gardens further. Raised garden beds as well as chair height elevated garden beds will be built to increase accessibility and inclusion. Working in the garden will be open to community members. Some people do not have the space or the time to have a garden of their own at home, but enjoy the feel of the earth, and the satisfaction of growing their own food. Some don’t feel they are strong or well enough to work in the garden, but enjoy being in the atmosphere outside with others.
Learning gardening techniques from those who have been there and done that, and thankfully are willing to share their knowledge is another aim of the garden. The hope is that all people will find a spot and feel welcome in the garden, working together on the common goal of food production.
Seminars will be held to discuss gardening techniques, such as soil management, planting, weeding, and watering methods. A walk through the garden has been planned to identify the pollinator plants and offer details about which plants are a food source for specific pollinators. Seminars also will provide ideas about the preparation of garden produce for eating and storing and will encourage recipe exchanges.
It is the hope of St. Andrew’s Tweed that the garden will become a gathering place, outside, for sharing stories of life, puttering in the earth, and sharing food together.