Profiling Specific Programs

The Raising the Profile Project (RPP) has profiled a range of community-based seniors’ services’ programs in seven core areas:

Group of seniors playing a board game in their retirement home

  1. Nutritional Supports
  2. Health and Wellness
  3. Physical Activity
  4. Education, Recreation and Creative Arts Programs
  5. Information, Referral, and Advocacy
  6. Transportation
  7. Affordable Housing

As the summary of the research evidence in the RPP’s Literature Review makes clear, these core services are essential in supporting older adults, and particularly those with low to moderate incomes, to develop new social networks, remain physically and mentally active, and live independently in their own homes for as long as possible.

To highlight the broad range of programs delivered by community-based seniors’ services and contribution these programs make in supporting seniors’ health and wellness, the RPP developed program profiles in the seven core service areas. The programs profiled were selected based on criteria designed to ensure that as much as possible these programs:

  • Reflect the broad range of programming and approaches within the sector.
  • Are representative of different regions, urban and rural communities, ethnically and culturally diverse populations, low-income seniors, etc.
  • Include programs where there is evidence of benefit for the participants (i.e. the program has been positively evaluated by participants; research available to show benefit; program is comprehensive, innovative and responsive to seniors needs) and evidence that these programs are sustainable and replicable (not dependent on a specific volunteer or personality)
  • Include case examples that show the implications of limited funding and/or of funding cuts on programs that have a proven track record

The program profiles are meant to provide examples of the excellent work being done by the sector and the role these programs play in promoting health and wellbeing, and fostering resilience for seniors. There are many other valuable programs being offered by community-based seniors’ services which we were not able to include due to limited time and resources. The programs profiled should be considered a small sampling of the range of programs available in communities across the province.

The information, included in the program profiles, was primarily collected through interviews with program coordinators. We also relied on written responses, online materials, promotional materials, reports, journal articles and other written materials. The information is presented in two different formats: program profiles and program summaries. Program profiles provide more detailed information and are the result of interviews and research. Program summaries are a brief description of a program based on either publicly available information or an interview.