About the rpp

The Raising the Profile Project (RPP) is an independent special project driven by an Advisory Committee representing non-profits and municipalities across the province. The RPP is identifying the importance of community-based seniors’ services and making recommendations about innovative ways to ensure the long-term capacity of the sector to meet the rising and increasingly complex needs of seniors in British Columbia now and in the future.

This project will lay the groundwork for a united sector that is making the best uses of resources available. In the end, the sector will be in a position to
demonstrate its value to each other, private and public funders, and decision-makers in the province.

What are the goals of the project?

The key goals of the project are:

  • Raise awareness in the broader community and government of the vital role played by community-based seniors’ services to support seniors to remain socially, physically and mentally active, and maintain their health and independence for as long as possible.
  • Document the uneven provision of and support for these services in different communities and regions of the province, and the limited access to services for many low income, isolated, immigrant, LGBTQ, rural and/or Indigenous seniors.
  • Outline a business case for greater investment in this sector based on the evidence showing that healthcare utilization and costs can be significantly reduced when seniors are socially engaged, physically active and have access to nutritional education and supports.
  • Identify how improving the collaboration and co-ordination within the sector and building stronger relationships with and commitment from external partners and funders will increase the capacity of the sector to support aging-well initiatives and ensure the health and well-being of diverse populations of seniors.

What are we doing?

Funding for the Raising the Profile Project has been secured for 2016-2017 for research and capacity-building activities within the sector. These activities include:

  • A literature review linking nutrition, physical activity and social support to positive health outcomes and reduced healthcare costs for seniors.
  • A survey of Better at Home Coordinators from across the province.
  • Profiles of programs offered by community-based seniors’ services in six core areas.
  • Interviews with different stakeholders involved with the community-based seniors’ services sector
  • Regional meetings in seven communities across the province.
  • Provincial summit, hosted by the City of Surrey, in the fall of 2017 to share the project’s research and identify the next steps for moving forward for the community-based seniors’ services sector.

How did the RPP get started?

The idea for the Raising the Profile Project (RPP) came from a workshop on senior’s centres at a large conference with the Seniors Advocate in the Spring of 2015. At the conference attendees highlighted the important services provided by senior centres, but also expressed concern over recent funding cuts and the lack of recognition of these services by government. A consensus emerged of the need for seniors centres and other community-based seniors’ services to have a higher profile and more support if BC is to effectively meet the challenges of its aging population. From this conference a provincial network was formed of direct service providers and organizations that support these providers in order to begin the conversation about how to build the capacity of the community-based seniors’ services sector to address the growing needs of our aging population.