grey matters 2014

Conference Details






Sheraton Red Deer
Sheraton Red Deer
3310 - 50th Avenue

Conference Agenda

Program at a Glance

Conference Agenda

Learning Objectives

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

7:00 a.m.

Registration and Continental Breakfast


8:30 a.m.

Welcome and Opening Remarks


9:15 a.m.

Concurrent Breakout Sessions

The ASANT Café: Online gathering, learning place for people with Alzheimer's/Dementia and their partners in care
Christine Prysunka, RSW, Manager, Red Deer Region; Sarah Caitlin Stuart, B.A., First Link Alzheimer Society of Alberta and Northwest Territories

Welcome to ASANT Café! In 2012, the Alzheimer Society of Alberta and Northwest Territories (ASANT) received funding to develop an e-learning platform to support people living with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. ASANT Café is an innovative idea which extends ASANT’s capacity to deliver programs and services that enhance the lives of Albertans living with dementia and their care partners. It provides 24/7 access to information, education and support within a virtual community. This session will demonstrate how technology is pioneering new models to connect community, professionals and seniors.

Coordinated Community Response to Elder Abuse
Monica Morrison, Golden Circle Senior Resource Centre, Lori Therrein, Alberta Health

Elder abuse is a serious complex social issue that requires a multifaceted response. Across the province, groups are developing collaborative community responses to ensure victims of elder abuse have access to services to prevent the abuse from continuing or happening again. This session will describe the steps taken in Central Alberta to implement a coordinated community response to elder abuse and provide insights helpful to other communities interested in taking action against elder abuse.

Creating Comfort and Skills: Supporting Sexuality with Older Adults
Diana Wark, RSW, Calgary Sexual Health Centre

There are negative cultural perceptions about seniors and sexuality. What can we do as professionals to counter those views and support sexual health and well-being of older adults? Keep the dialogue open and increase your confidence when talking with clients about sexuality. Receive practical suggestions, tips and resources to start talking and keep talking about sexual health and well-being with seniors.

Addressing the Demand for Accessible and Appropriate Transportation for Seniors in Urban and Rural Alberta
Moderator: Bonnie Dobbs, PhD Gerontology
Panel: Nolan Crouse, MBA, Mayor , City of St. Albert, Alberta; Sheila Hallett, BA, Executive Director, Edmonton Seniors Coordinating Council; Bernie Buzik, B.A., B.Ed, Wainwright and District Handivan Society

Mobility is central to healthy aging. Public transportation is often seen as the solution to maintaining mobility when driving is no longer an option; however, less than 6% of Canadian seniors use public transportation, and public transportation options can be challenging in rural communities. Alberta’s aging population will increase the demand for accessible and appropriate transportation, including alternate transportation services to support mobility and social inclusion. Panel members will discuss enablers and barriers to the development of sustainable models of alternate transportation for seniors throughout Alberta.


10:30 a.m.

Displays and refreshments


11:00 a.m.

Concurrent Breakout Sessions

Aging Well in Rural Communities: Conversations in Central Alberta
Bobby Jo Stannard , Red Deer FCSS

Learn about community development strategies and approaches taken by Family Community Support Services community workers as they engage seniors in Red Deer and District to explore the current reality and future needs of older adults. Participants will learn what Central Alberta seniors have identified as issues and challenges of aging in a rural community and the supports currently available or needed to successfully ‘age well’.

Seniors Collaborative Community Outreach Team (SCCOT): Creative, Collaborative and Comprehensive Care for Seniors
Sue Nielsen, MN, NP, Nurse Practitioner, Alex Community Health Centre, Senior Clinic, Calgary AB; Kerry Greenaway, RN, BScN, Alberta Health Services; Kim Savard, Calgary Family Services

Seniors Collaborative Community Outreach Team (SCCOT) is a multi-disciplinary team comprised of a nurse practitioner, social worker, and geriatric mental health clinician responding to unique needs of clients 55+ in the Calgary area. SCCOT was developed in response to the needs of isolated, at-risk seniors in the East Village evacuated from their homes during the 2013 flooding. Participants attending this session will learn about the opportunities and successes of a truly person-centered outreach approach.

Is the Door Open: The Arrival of Lesbian and Gay Seniors!
Michael Phair, MA, M.Ed, University of Alberta, Institute of Sexual Minority Studies and Services; Eric Storey, BCom, BSW, RSW

This presentation will use recent information on gay and lesbian senior issues and interests to help ‘open the door’. It will focus on ensuring senior activity centres, all housing forms-assisted and independent senior housing complexes, long term care facilities, lodges and palliative centres-are welcoming, safe and caring environments for GLBTQ seniors 55+.



Idea Cafés

Facilitated Discussions (select one)

  • Adult Day Programs-What do Seniors Want?
  • Transportation-Ride-a-long, Keeping Seniors Mobile


12:15 p.m.


12:15 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Poster Sessions

From Issue to Action: Collaborative effort to solve identified issues in the Community
Doreen Slessor, Executive Director, Stop Abuse in Families Society
St. Albert Working Group

St Albert Seniors’ Working Group is a working group of 18 community partners that work with seniors in the City of St Albert to establish initiatives that assist seniors in their community. Members of the working group will share learnings, templates, findings and strategies so other communities can develop successful partnerships to improve the lives of seniors in their own communities.

Myths and Facts about Insurance Requirements for Volunteer Drivers and Community- Based Organizations Providing Transportation to Seniors
Bonnie Dobbs, PhD Gerontology; Tara Pidborochynski, MSc., Medically A - Risk Driver Centre (MARD); Fritz Wortman, Senior Consumer Officer, In surance Bureau of Canada; Rosalie Gelderman, PC, Edmonton Seniors Coordinating Council

In Alberta a significant number of seniors rely on community-based organizations for transportation to medical appointments and other essential services. Community-based organizations may be dependent on volunteer drivers. Questions often arise about automobile insurance requirements for volunteer drivers and organizations providing driving services. Join us for an overview of requirements and an opportunity for answers to these questions.

A novel comprehensive model of infection control for contracted senior facilities
Geoffrey Tomko, Bsc, B.E.H(AD), CPHI(c)

The South Zone Community Infection Prevention and Control (CIPC) program is a novel model which provides infection control to contracted seniors living facilities (CSLFs) and home care. The CIPC program works in close collaboration between Alberta Health Services Senior Health, Public Health and the Medical Officer of Health while using infection strategies to ensure overall patient/resident safety. Additionally, the program provides education, support and coordination with homecare services related to infection control to ensure quality and patient safety.

GPS technology: Can it support dementia clients and their caregivers?
Tracy Raadik-Ruptash, BScOT, OT (c); Alberta Health Services

Alberta Health Services and the Government of Alberta have partnered to bring community-based technology to dementia patients and their caregivers. The aim of GPS technology is to enable individuals living with dementia to be safe, independent, and active members of their community. GPS technology is an innovative way of supporting family, caregivers and emergency responders to locate and assist dementia clients who have wandered or become lost. Innovations such as the use of GPS technology offer a community-based solution for supporting dementia clients and their caregivers. Participants will learn how this can be implemented in their communities.

Engaging Immigrant Seniors in Community Development
Marcie Stork, Abi Adhikari, Lethbridge Family Services/ Marlene Van Eden, Lethbridge Senior Citizens Organization

The goal of this project is to engage Bhutanese seniors in research and development of programs or projects that will facilitate active participation in community activities on a regular and ongoing basis. Strategies and process of engaging seniors in the development of programs and benefits to seniors will be shared.

Alberta Supports: Call/Click/Come In
Conina Cole, Government of Alberta

Alberta Supports can be viewed as ‘the front door’ to integrated service delivery. It is the one-stop contact point that helps Albertans across the province obtain the supports they need efficiently and consistently. Find out how to access information, programs, referrals and services by clicking on line, and speaking to a Service Coordinator.

Integrated Community Response to Hoarding
Doneka Simmons, RSW, Seniors Association of Greater Edmonton (SAGE)

SAGE partners and the community in leading a Hoarding Coalition, where community partners come together in an integrated, collaborative way to address the experiences and needs of individuals 55+ with Hoarding Disorder. An overview of different methods used in collaborations to deliver services to seniors and helping them ‘Get Connected’.

1:30 p.m.

Keynote Address: Valerie Pringle -
Veteran Broadcaster and Advocate

As the co-anchor of CTV’s Canada AM morning show for almost a decade, Valerie Pringle is one of Canada’s most acclaimed and best-known broadcasters. In addition to her accomplishments in the broadcasting industry, she is also well-known for her involvement with non-profit organizations and documentary work.


2:45 p.m.

Refresh and Replenish


3:00 p.m.

Featured Panel: Alberta Motor Association

Moderator: Mr. Don Szarko Panel: Dr. David Hogan MD, FRCPC; Ms. Cynthia Johnson MHS, BScOT, OT(c); Dr. Charles Scialfa, BSc., MA., PhD

Driving Assessment/Evaluation:
The Current Framework and Exploring New Opportunities

Driving is the primary mode of community mobility among seniors in Canada and is associated with well-being and social participation. With the population aging, policy makers, health care providers, and researchers recognize the value in working together to ensure fairness and consistency in evaluating fitness to drive. This panel will share physician, occupational therapist, and traffic safety perspectives on driver assessments and highlight what is being done to educate and encourage families and seniors to plan ahead for the day they will no longer be able to drive.


4:00 p.m.

Closing Remarks


5:00 p.m.

Networking Reception





Thursday, October 2, 2014

7:30 a.m.

Registration and Continental Breakfast


8:30 a.m.

Welcome Address

  • Tara Veer, Mayor of Red Deer

9:00 a.m.

Keynote Address: Amanda Lindhout -
Kidnap Survivor, Best-selling Author and Humanitarian

As Founder and Executive Director of The Global Enrichment Foundation (GEF), Amanda Lindhout has gained international acclaim for her work supporting development and aid in Somalia – the country where she once spent 460 days as a hostage. Her award-winning humanitarian work has provided aid and education to over 300,000 people living in the war-torn country. Amanda’s story of survival in the face of lost hope illustrates the remarkable strength of the human spirit.


10:30 a.m.

Displays and Refreshments


11:00 a.m.

Concurrent Breakout Sessions

Delivering More than a Meal to our Community
Kim Jeffery, B.Sc., RD, Calgary Meals on Wheels

How can communities effectively support the nutritional health of seniors? Identifying barriers to nutrition is critical, as is the need to develop strategies and interventions that address specific deficiencies and optimize one’s nutritional health. Several strategies will be discussed that exemplify healthy eating and promote higher quality of life, including:

  • Seniors Group Meal Programs
  • Grocery shopping and senior transportation initiatives
  • Cooking clubs
  • Readily available, safe, affordable, nutritious food

Becoming Intercultural: Inclusive Organizational Practices and Interagency Collaborations
Bernice Sewell, RSW, Director of Operations Seniors Association of Greater Edmonton
Yvonne Chiu, Executive Director, Multicultural Health Brokers Co - operative

Participants will learn about key domains of collaborative practice:

  • A model of outreach and culturally responsive programming for isolated immigrant and refugee seniors in Edmonton
  • Beginning the process for developing intercultural programming to nurture community connections between immigrant/refugee and mainstream seniors
  • An organizational development framework for inclusive practices

Mental Health of Family Care Givers: Empirical Evidence and Practice Implications
Daniel Lai, MSocSc, MSW, PhD; Lun Li, BSW, MA, University of Calgary

Family caregivers are of central importance in caring for older adults, and approximately 1 in 4 Albertans aged 45 and over are caring for an older person Their role is crucial to ‘aging in place’, enabling aging individuals to remain in their homes and communities. Recent research has described the mental health consequences of caregiving tasks and increased risk of mental health problems for caregivers. This presentation will connect empirical research evidence with practice implications by exploring several aspects of mental health consequences of caregiving.



Idea Cafés

Facilitated Discussions (select one)

  • Aging Well in Rural Communities: Continued Conversations
  • Inclusivity: Welcoming the Rainbow


12:15 p.m.

Lunch and displays


1:30 p.m.

Concurrent Breakout Sessions

Anticipating an Aging Alberta-Where Should We Focus?
Dr. Duncan Robertson, Senior Medical Director; Dennis Cleaver, B.Com, MHSA, Executive Director, Seniors Health Strategic Clinical Network

Alberta’s Seniors Health Strategic Clinical Network is pursuing improvements to health care services and practices that enable Alberta’s seniors to optimize their health, well-being, and independence. The Network is actively engaging stakeholders in a collaborative process to identify and implement evidence based, informed leading practices in seniors’ health care across Alberta. An overview of the Network’s three platforms and projects, including the appropriate use of antipsychotics in long term care and elder friendly care will be shared.

Age or Decay: Our Choice
Allan Ferchuk, BPE, M.Sc., P.G.D. University of Saskatchewan

This workshop will strive to provide knowledge of a ‘holistic’ approach to health and wellness for seniors in Alberta, building a foundation of understanding as to how modern society influences are detrimental to our physical, emotional and mental brains. Participants will improve their understanding of why self-leadership is key to becoming leading professionals in best practices for improved life-style in the last third of our lives.

Palliative Care and End of Life Alberta Provincial Framework: What does this mean for Albertans?
Jamie Tycholiz, RN, BSc, Alberta Health; Max Jajszczak, RN, BN, PMP, Alberta Health Services

In jurisdictions across Canada, Palliative End of Life Care (PEOLC) is successfully provided at the primary care level if clinicians, care-providers, patients and families are supported when complexities and emergencies arise. This presentation will discuss

  • Plans to introduce a standardized PEOLC framework in Alberta
  • Areas that require strengthening and development to improve PEOLC in Alberta
  • How the current PEOLC landscape is expected to change over the next few years

Building Healthy Seniors Communities-Beyond Bullying
Karen Sheridan; Barbara Ashely Phillips, JD; Shelley Sabo, BA South East Edmonton Seniors Association

Senior to senior bullying in independent living and assisted living facilities is common across the country. It can lead to depression, anxiety and loneliness which will put significant strain on the health care system and community resources. Little is done to prepare seniors for the give and take of communal living.

This session will provide a deeper look at co-creating healthy communities where positive relationships can be built, respected and supported within a communal setting. Participants will be armed with strategies, a tool kit for naming and documenting bullying behaviors, and recommendations for staff to address the issue


3:00 p.m.

Closing Remarks and Door Prizes





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Hosted by:

Golden Circle



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