Supporting seniors in winter weather

Over the last few days, B.C.’s South Coast has experienced an onslaught of snow, wind and freezing rain, and it appears that there may be more to come.

Here are a few things you can do to help the seniors in your life.

Keep sidewalks clear

Route 65 is reminding home and business property owners to keep sidewalks cleared and free of icy surfaces. Seniors in particular, are at more risk for falls, and may suffer more significant injuries when sidewalks are not cleared and salted.

Many municipalities have bylaws that require the clearing of snow and ice from the full width of sidewalks that surround their property by 10 a.m. on the morning following a snowfall, seven days a week.

Help your neighbours

Many seniors are simply unable to shovel their own driveway or sidewalk. If you can, consider helping an elderly neighbour out by doing some shovelling for them. Aside from the feeling accomplishment you’ll get, it’s great cardio and burns upwards of 400 calories an hour! Some cities, such as Vancouver, have “Snow Angel” programs to encourage residents and businesses to lend a hand to those who are unable to shovel their own sidewalks.

Check in

During the winter, social isolation is a big challenge especially for seniors and others who live with mobility challenges. If there are seniors in your life or in your neighbourhood, consider asking if they need someone to pick up groceries or run other small errands. Just taking a moment to check in or have a cup of tea can go a long way.

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