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The great “no-flip mattress” rip-off How much money have you lost trying to get a good night’s sleep? If you want sweet dreams, read on. by John Rogers, President, John’s Bedroom Barn For over a quarter of a century now I’ve been searching for the perfect mattress system. I’ve listened to sales rep after sales rep telling me about their “latest and greatest, new and improved” products ad nauseam. On many an occasion I’ve bought these “latest and greatest” systems for my own stores, hoping each time that the product would live up to its hype. I’d conservatively guess that over the years we’ve spent over $150,000 on mattress systems that failed and warranties that didn’t work because of the fine print. And over the years we’ve listened to innumerable clients who are in the same boat. They’ve spent thousands of dollars on conventional mattress systems that failed weeks, months or a couple of years after their purchase, only to find that the terms of their warranty made it impossible to collect. What’s wrong with the mattress industry In the old days, mattress had quilted “comfort layers” both top and bottom. This meant we all had to flip our mattresses regularly in order to efficiently utilize both layers of topping. Now I never met anyone who enjoyed flipping their mattress, so it was inevitable that sooner or later someone would come up with a solution. This great day arrived in 2003 when manufacturers declared that the “no flip mattress” was the answer. “No more fighting with your bed! With our New and Improved Product, all you have to do is lie down and go to sleep” Sounds great, but were they really trying to save you extra work? No - they were trying to cut costs. Instead of quilting mattresses both top and bottom to provide you with two comfort layers, they saved a pile of money by only quilting the top. And because there’s only one quilted layer, guess what wears out twice as fast? You got it - your no-flip mattress. So it turns out that while the no-flip gimmick may have saved you some work, the real winners are the manufacturers who cut their costs by cutting quality. Why the warranties don’t work You can still get 15 - 20 year warranties on these new-

fangled mattresses, so it looks like your new no-flip mattress should last as long as your old one. But let’s take a look at the fine print. Old warranties used to protect you against the excessive softening of your mattress over time. New mattress warranties claim that up to 2 inches of visible height loss, or body impressions, are completely normal and so not warranted. What does that mean exactly? Here’s an example. We’ve all sat on a couch that’s old - you know, the kinds where you take a seat and your behind ends up lower then your knees. Have a look at the cushion when you climb out of the trough. Has it lost any height from its orginal size? Unlikely. But the top layer has lost all its ability to cushion you. It’s almost impossible to lose height on foam, which is what all mattresses are topped with, but that doesn’t mean the foam is doing the job you paid it to do. As the couch example demonstrates, just because your mattresses might look fine, it doesn’t mean that it will remain comfortable. But your warranty probably won’t cover you if it doesn’t. We have some solutions The mattresses in my stores are made exclusively for my stores according to our specifications. We don’t follow the industry by touting new gimmicks, cutting corners and writing warranties that protect us, not you. Instead, we use old-fashioned common sense coupled with great Canadian - made foams and we do a little backyard tinkering when we find a better way or a superior product. Our mattress can be made differently from side to side to accommodate different comfort preferences, usually at no additional cost. The mattresses can be flipped - easily! - and if components like the topping material do wear out, they can easily and inexpensively replaced. It’s not expensive! A good queen-size mattress from us starts at $499.99. Come in and see our mattress specialists and find out why we are “the home of a great night’s sleep:”. 1707 Bowen Rd. Nanaimo 741-1777 841 Cliffe Ave. Courtenay 897-1666 Toll Free 1-800-663-5645


Prime, Fall 2011


Cover: Pickleball is a fast-growing sport among seniors (pg. 8). Below, Margaret Hughes enjoys a walk through the ampitheatre.

Prime is a ppublication of thee Chronicle, a division ooff Black Press. FALL, 2011

Volume 2, Issue 1

Publisher Teresa McKinley

Editor Matt Peterson

In Ladysmith - 4 New reality - 5 In Chemainus - 6/7 Staying active - 8/9 Seniors’ issues - 10/11 - and much more.

Reporter Niomi Pearson

Production Doug Kent Kelly Gagne

Advertising Tim O’Rourke

Office services Colleen Wheeler The Chronicle Box 400 Ladysmith, B.C. V9G 1A3 Phone 250-245-2277 Fax 250-245-2260 Online at:

Prime, Fall 2011


In Ladysmith

Seniors benefit from beautiful setting


he Ladysmith Seniors Centre Society formerly known as the OAP, have consistently worked with the town to provide a valuable service and a location for the seniors of our community to gather in. If you are 55 years or older you are eligible to become a member of the organization. The beautiful new facility on 2nd Avenue is already creating new interest and incentive to expand the activities that develop goodwill, fellowship, entertainment which help alleviate loneliness etc. Examples of activities include card games,

carpet bowling, shuffle board, soup and sandwich, dinners, birthday parties, pancake brunch and many other activities. The Seniors Centre Office is open Monday’s, Tuesday’s and Friday’s from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Persons interested in additional information please drop in or call 250924-1924.

Carpet bowling is one of the many activities for seniors at the Ladysmith Seniors Centre Society at their new location on Second Avenue.

Oceanviews Vacation Rentals Opening two new properties in Crofton, BC. “Gabled Cottage” is the new, 2800 sq ft cottage on oceanfront property built by the creators of Oceanview Retirement Village Ltd. The second property, “The Loft”, is the completely refurbished, 800 sq ft carriage house at “Rose Cottage”, also owned and operated by ORV Ltd. Insp Inspired by their love of anything English, the h owners modeled “Gabled Cottage” afteer an English country home. This property is perfect for the corporate pro getaway as the upstairs loft can be used as ggeet a media room. “The Loft”, located above m the th h carriage house at “Rose Cottage”, has been bbe e completely remodeled. “The Loft” was wa w as created for the more relaxed and casual traveller who enjoys walking barefoot along the beach and building sand castles. Your stay can be for one night or for the entire month. Catering, Concierge and Maid service can be arranged for your stay.

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New generation

‘New reality’ for families


ost teenagers spend their time counting the days until they are free of their parents’ tyrannical rule. But for a growing number of people, living with their parents has become an important and rewarding lifestyle. Take for instance Sean Jonas and his mother, Meta. The two had lived together before, with Meta living in a separate suite with her son years ago. After Sean’s family break up, the two have found themselves again sharing the same address. The pressures of a new career coupled with a failing relationship was hard for Jonas and is thankful his mother was there to help. “(She’s been) moral support in a difficult time,” said Sean when asked about the benefits. “I’m blessed to have a mother there in that situation. She helped me in a very difficult time in my life,” said Sean, adding he has set up a fund to make sure his mother and those close to him are taken care of should he pass. The relationship is a lot about give and take, Sean pointed out, but the two have always had a very strong relationship making living close much easier. The living arrangement has benefited Meta, too, who enjoys having her son nearby. Sean has also been able to help with renovations and repairs around the house. “He’s sorta handy,” Meta joked. “It’s nice having him home.” That being said, it’s not all roses, noted Sean. “My mother is an individual and so am I, so at times there is conflict. I’d be lying to say it is always rosy.” Prime, Fall 2011

“He actually needs his space and I need mine,” said Meta. For people thinking about entering into the same kind of situation, Meta has some advice — be prepared. “If you’re used to living on your own and have someone come in, even though you’ve raised them, they are totally different. I mean they are not you and you all have your own habits.” And, for the Jonas’, this is not a temporary solution. They plan on listing Meta’s house and purchasing a home with a suite, or a duplex. Sean said their experience is becoming more common place for families. “I think we are coming into a new reality overall,” Sean said, adding that while North Americans have a stigma about living with parents, it is a common practice around the world. Other forms of care can become expensive, Sean said, and living with family members is a great support system for aging parents that keeps them in their houses longer. “If I’m there to help her in any way I can, then that is great,” he said. While Meta is a strong, capable woman, Sean notes there are days her arthritis can get in the way. “And I’m there to help her.” Sean said he finds it sad there are a number of seniors in extended care who get cast aside by family members. “I don’t think it bodes well for those kids who don’t go see their parents, because their children are going to see the same thing happening. “They are raising their children not to care about them.”

Meta and Sean Jonas

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In Chemainus

Heather Gibbins, Joan Chaba, Dori Taylor, Dian Kevis and Robin Irwin are just some of the Centre Stage Dancers at Chemainus’ Senior Centre dancing under the direction of Jo Kelly.


A Pharmacy First Rexall™ carries the HOME HEALTH CARE PRODUCTS YOU NEED! We’ll make you feel right at home. • On-Site Flu Clinics in November • Participating in the Smoking Cessation Program • Compression Stockings • Mastectomy bras and forms • Freedom and mobility products • Raised toilet seats • Bars • Walkers • We offer Free Delivery • Seniors Day 20% off last Tuesday of every month Ask Nancy our Nurse’s Assistant for help or Sabiha, our Pharmacist, for all your Medical Needs and Health Concerns.

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Monthly Activities BINGO

Every Mon. Doors open at 4:45 pm. Starts at 6:40 pm. Loonie Pot, G-Ball, Bonanza & 50/50 Draw. Everyone welcome!


Every 2nd & 4th Saturday (cost $7 incl. lunch). Doors open @ 7:00 pm. Everyone welcome!

Every 3rd Saturday 5 pm. POT LUCK BIRTHDAY PARTIES Everyone welcome! Entertainment by the Wrinklies. Wed. & Fri. 9:30 to 11:30. Please come as usual for fun MUFFIN MORNINGS & conversation. BLOOD PRESSURE Every 3rd Wed. 9:30 to 11:30 am. CLINIC SOUP & SANDWICH Every 3rd Wed. 11:30 to 12:45 pm (Cost $5) Everyone welcome! Entertainment 2012 MEMBERSHIP ($15) now available Our 575 plus membership is increasing daily. New members (55+) are always welcome! Annual membership is only $15. OPEN MONDAY–FRIDAY 9 am–3pm SATURDAY 10am–12 noon Phone 250-246-2111 for info. 9824 Willow Street, Chemainus BC Prime, Fall 2011

In Chemainus

Daniel Gerwig, Judy West, Sally Urton and Janis Finn take to the table for a game of majong in Chemainus.

Plenty of activities at Chemainus centre


here are many options for seniors in Chemainus. In fact, there is so much to do at the Chemainus Senior’s Centre, it draws residents from as far away as Nanaimo and Mill Bay. There are currently 575 members. President Murray Schafer said the activities range from card games to dancing.

“We are busy here everyday of the week,” he said of the Willow Street facility. There are tap classes, mens and women’s choirs, bridge, linedancing, computer drop-in, table tennis, Spanish lessons, yoga and much more. There is also weekly bingo and frequent dances and potluck birthday parties.

“The group we have here is very active. You need to remain active when you are a senior.” There is a $15 annual fee to sign up with the centre and each activity is $1. “It gives people something to do and socialize,” he said, noting the coffee is usually on and they can even serve some specialty drinks such as mochas.

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Prime, Fall 2011

Twice a week there is also ‘Muffin Morning,’ where seniors have a chance to chat over coffee and muffins. And of course, it is all possible thanks to behind-thescenes help. “It’s all because of the good volunteers we have,” said Schafer. “It takes a lot of people to run this place.”



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Staying active

Pickleball attracting seniors’ attention


ake one whiffle ball and a hard paddle bat and you’ve got the elements of Pickleball, one of Ladysmith’s fastest growing sports for seniors. “It’s fantastic exercise, it develops a spirit of camaraderie amongst the participants, its a kinder, gentler form of tennis, so it’s appealing to people who’ve had racquet sport experience earlier in their years, and also to people new to the sport who are looking for an interesting and fun way to keep fit,” said Jillian Easterbrook, Ladysmith pickleball coordinator. Pickleball is a pleasant combination of badminton, tennis and table tennis. Armed with their paddle and whiffle ball, players take to the court, which has the same dimensions of a double’s

badminton court. To be considered pickleball, the net must be about two inches lower than a tennis net. Pickleball originated in 1965 in the state of Washington and was invented by American congressman Joel Pritchard. Its trademark name came from Pritchard’s family dog, Pickle, who would often attempt to steal the ball during a game, said John Bucchieri, who plays pickleball three times a week. Since then it has experienced a resurgence in recent years and has grown into a popular sport in high schools across North America and in US states like Arizona, where Easterbrook discovered the sport while vacationing at the Case Grande with husband Moe. “We came home and it was like

pickleball withdrawal because we had been playing every day down there,” she said. To Easterbrook’s surprise, the closest local place to play was Nanaimo. And so, armed with information she researched on google, Easterbrook headed up to the Frank Jameson Community Centre to see about bringing the sport to Ladysmith. What started as a limited number of sessions has developed into a six-days-a-week gathering with a pool of about 50-60 regular players. Pickleball is a social sport which attracts dozens of residents to the community centre every week, where players can get their Pickle-fix for a small drop-in fee. “It’s caught on quite well,” said Bucchieri. “It’s not as strenuous as other racquet ball sports.”

Because of the smaller size of the court and slower ball speed, pickleball is an ideal activity for seniors. But Easterbrook emphasized age is not a requirement and that residents of all ages can come out to play. New players are always welcome, so if you haven’t already smacked your first pickleball you can give it a try at the Frank Jameson Community Centre Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m to 12 p.m. or Wednesdays from 7:25 p.m. to 8:25 p.m., or Thursday from 9 to 10:30 p.m. The drop-in rate is $2.25. Pickleball will also be coming to Chemainus on Thursdays at the elementary school starting November 3 from 6-8 p.m. Drop-in fee is $3.

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Prime, Fall 2011

Staying active

Keeping fit starts with stop at FJCC L

adysmith Parks, Recreation and Culture recognize the need for the older adult to stay active. Active living and physical activity help us to stay engaged in life. The benefits of active living and physical activity include improved health and an increase in energy levels. Physical activity and exercise can help manage the symptoms of illness and pain, improve mood and mental health, and gives us opportunities to meet new people. Ladysmith Parks, Recreation and Culture offers a wide variety of group fitness classes that are geared towards the older adult. Classes are at the Frank Jameson Community Centre in both the fitness studio and pool. Fitness Lite is a fun, low impact aerobics class which includes a strength and flexibility component. It runs Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Yoga Fitness helps improve musculoskeletal flexibility, range of motion and balance, and is offered on Tuesday and Friday from noon to 1 p.m. During an aquatic-based fitness class, each participant is able to work at their own intensity and exercise at a comfortable water level. Water-based exercise classes decrease the amount of shock which is transmitted through the bones, joints and ligaments. Nifty Fifties is offered on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 2 to 3:30 p.m.

Pickleball is a fun, low-impact way to get out and stay fit. The sport happens at the Frank Jameson Community Centre on Sixth Avenue. Adaptive fitness is another waterbased fitness class, recommended for the older adult with arthritis or other mobility limitations. This class is offered Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 11 a.m. to noon, and on Tuesdays and Thursdays 8:30 to 9:30 a.m., and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. Look soon for ‘Restorative Aquatic Fitness,’ an entry-level adaptive fitness class. It will be happening on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11 a.m. to noon. Whether you are an early riser or late starter, the pool has aquatic fitness classes for you. Classes are held on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. and night classes are held Mondays and Wednesdays from 7:30 p.m. to 8:30

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p.m. There are also adult swim lessons on Mondays and Wednesdays from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. If you prefer to work out on your own, the air-conditioned fitness centre offers an extensive selection of cardio and strength training equipment. The fitness centre is staffed by experienced fitness and personal trainers who can take you through a gym orientation and get you motivated and started on a fitness program. Some of the benefits of strength training include improved balance, an increase in total strength, and functional performance. Early bird length swimming is offered on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 6 to 8:30 a.m., and noon length swimming is Monday-

$10 All Day Golf

Friday from noon to 1 p.m. Urban poling or nordic walking is a combination of cross-country skiing and walking. Benefits of this hot fitness trend include improved posture, balance and stability. This activity can be done any time of year and is great for anyone who is just starting out on the road to better fitness and vitality, as well as those who may have lower joint pain, arthritis, and osteoporosis. Ladysmith Parks, Recreation and Culture offers free urban pole walking clinics and participants may borrow the poles at any time to use around town. For more information, please call 250-245-6424 or pick up a leisure guide at FJCC or the Chronicle.

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Speaking for Seniors

Examining issues facing elderly Pat Edge Ladysmith Seniors Office


hat are the chief or main challenges facing seniors in our community today? For the last 10 years the challenges for seniors identified by the Ladysmith Resources Association have been health, finance, transportation, housing and legal/ personal-related matters – and these are still the challenges our seniors face today. According to a National Report released by the National Seniors Council of Canada in 2009, health, finances, transportation and housing were the top four challenges for seniors across Canada. The fifth concern in this report was awareness and delivery of services and benefits. It is because of such a challenge that the LRCA was organized and has developed so many programs and services to assist our community. This report confirms that the chief concerns or challenges were similar for all seniors regardless where they lived in Canada. In Ladysmith and area many of our non-employed seniors are the backbone of volunteers for churches, service clubs, auxiliaries, societies, groups and clubs providing support to the public, fraternal orders, non-profits providing free services and seniors’ as individuals

Pat Edge is a member of the National Seniors Council and is co-ordinator at the Seniors Office in the Ladysmith Resources Centre. helping family, friends and neighbours. It has been shown numerous times that Ladysmith is a “Town with a Heart”, and that our senior volunteers are the engine that helps drive this force. Non senior working people – people with families and jobs – also contribute to the communities’ wellbeing, spending hundreds of hours volunteering to help make Ladysmith and area a better and safer place to live. Not forgetting our teenagers – seeing these young people joining in to assist others is so gratifying

to see, and contributes to building their character and learning experiences. The Seniors Office of the LRCA is the first to acknowledge that there are many lonely, isolated and shut-in seniors not reached nor participating in the LRCA programs and services, nor city services nor contacting either the federal or the provincial governments to access their programs and services. It is because of these seniors that the Senior Office of the LRCA was created in 1996 and still remains as our objective. “To help keep seniors healthy, safe and secure in their

own homes for as long as possible and to reach lonely, isolated and shut-in seniors” What are some of the programs and services available and who provides them for our seniors in the Ladysmith and area? We will record a number of sources, but this is only a partial list. Additional information is available Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Ladysmith Resources Centre Assn. Senior Office 250-245-3079. ❱ HEALTH: The BC Provincial Medical Services Plan covers prescription, physicians and surgeons, diagnostic X-rays and laboratory services. These and other additional services are covered for those eligible for Premium Assistance which is based on income. The Vancouver Island Health Authority Home and Community Care services are to complement or supplement client’s needs which are met mainly through families, friends and other community resources. — BC Health and Seniors Line is 1 800 465 4911 — HealthLink BC (phone 811) provides health information on: BC HealthGuide, BC HealthFiles, BC NurseLine and Pharmacist service and Dial-a-Dietitian. Locally we have the Health Care Auxiliary that offers LifeLine, Meals on Wheels and rental of Red Cross


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Prime, Fall 2011

Speaking for Seniors

Many resources available in Ladysmith Health Equipment Loan Program Anyone who served in the Canadian Forces should contact their local Legion office for benefits available for veterans. The LRCA provides a free counseling program, Good Food Box, the Food Bank, plus another 30 or more programs and services for residents of Ladysmith and area. ❱ FINANCES A volunteer income tax program is available for any seniors receiving the GIS or without GIS but with multi-medical and disability expenses can be prepared at no cost at the LRCA from March 1 to April 30 each year. Free year-round problem solving, tax credits, disability applications and previous year’s returns etc are also available. Benefits from both the provincial and federal government are based on income reported to Canada Revenue Agency each year. The Old Age Security is granted at age 65. The Guaranteed Income Supplement, Safer (rental subsidy) and MSP-Premium Assistance are tied to income. The T2201 Non refundable Disability Tax Credit is tied to health, and will reduce any Income Tax payable, can be transferred between spouses, can

Prime, Fall 2011

reduce your Car insurance, MSP-PA, you can apply for Fuel Tax Refund and reduce your annual Home Owners Tax bill. Call the Seniors Office for details. Split Pensions is another item – Canada Pension or personal company pension, call us to learn about the possible positive or negative sides of this option. ❱ TRANSPORTATION Ladysmith now has its own in-Town Trolley, check out the schedules and routes, it’s fun and convenient. The basic drivers insurance may be reduced by 25 per cent at age 65. A further 25 per cent reduction is possible if you have the Revenue Canada Disability Tax Credit, plus savings of .14 ½ cents per litre for gasoline (Fuel Tax Refund Program) Travel Assistance Program — when referred by your physician to a major center within B.C., for non-emergency medical services and travelling by car at least 40 km one way from your home, there are meal and kilometer expenses that can be claimed as medical expenses on your Income Tax, when traveling via rail, air, bus or ferry ask your physician for forms before you travel. Free transportation

is provided by the LRCA for seniors not having means of transportation, when travelling to Nanaimo or Duncan for a medical appointment. When travelling to Victoria or Vancouver, call the LRCA for a contract telephone number. ❱ HOUSING SAFER is a non-taxable, nonreportable rental subsidy for seniors 60 years of age or older, who pay more than 30 per cent of their gross income for rent. Eligibility is tied to income. Home Owners Grant provides a grant to reduce your property taxes. Property tax deferment for those 55 or older provides a low interest loan to assist qualified B.C. homeowners in paying their property taxes. HASI helps homeowners and landlords pay for minor home adaptations to allow low-income seniors to remain in their homes. Tied to income. RRAP provides low-income senior homeowner’s assistance for repair of their home, aid is also available for modifications to homes for persons with disabilities. Tied to income. The Town of Ladysmith has a Snow Angel program recognizing people who help their neighbours during the winter.

❱ LEGAL/PERSONAL The question of wills, representative agreements, power of attorney, living wills, what should a person prepare prior to death, and what should the survivor do with or without a will is a daunting one. What can happen if you add your adult child to your bank account or home ownership? Simple questions can be answered at the LRCA, and we refer clients to our local Lawyers and Notary Publics. We also refer seniors to the Public Guardian and Trustee of B.C., Diala-Law, People’s Law School, Legal Services Society, and BC Centre for Elder Advocacy and Support. These are just a few of the agencies who can also provide assistance and advice. Locally we have the RCMP detachment, Victim Services, the RCMP Community Policing with all of their programs, including the Community Police Station, Citizens on Patrol and Speed Watch. For information on the above list of agencies, groups and societies providing assistance to seniors, plus many, many more, each with their own eligibility, limitations and coverage, please contact the Seniors Office at the LRCA. Our Mission is to co-ordinate, facilitate and provide community services and information in order to enhance the physical, mental and emotional health and well being of seniors in Ladysmith and area. Contact the office at 250245-3079.


Seniors Issues

Understanding power of attorney Gary Richardson Public Notary & Ladysmith seniors council member


Power of Attorney (“POA”) allows an adult to appoint one or more persons, called an attorney, to legally act on the adult’s behalf, in carrying out financial transactions, if the adult is unable to act themselves due to illness, injury, or simply absent. POA’s do not cover medical issues, only financial. Examples

are paying bills, selling a home, or filing an income tax return. Everyone should have a POA, regardless of age. Usually a spouse or child is appointed, but it can be a relative, friend, or even a professional. An alternate attorney should always be appointed, in case the first attorney is sick, unwilling to act in the future due to unforeseen circumstances, or deceased. Two or more attorneys can be appointed to act together, if desired.

If an adult does not have a POA and becomes incapacitated, either the Public Guardian and Trustee of B.C. takes over, or the family has to make a court application either of which is very expensive. An enduring Power of Attorney (“EPOA”) may be used if the adult becomes mentally incompetent. This can protect the adult if he/ she is the victim of an event such as a stroke, which prevents him/ her from making legally binding decisions.

POA’s and EPOA’s can be cancelled at any time. Death cancels it automatically, and the Will then takes over. The attorney must always act in the best interests of the adult. Recent B.C. legislation imposes strict standards of care for the attorney. For further information, please contact Gary Richardson of the Ladysmith Senior Advisory Council at 250-924-8833

Combating crime RCMP Seniors’ Guidebook great reference to keep on top of threats


here is a growing security threat facing people of all ages these days. Crooks and fiends are finding new ways to get to and steal from anyone caught with their guard down. The RCMP have an extensive guidebook on how seniors can stay safe in their home, combat elder abuse and avoid sneaky scammers. ”Seniors safety is important to us here at the Ladysmith RCMP,” said Staff-Sgt. Roger Plamondon. “Fraud is often directed at senior citizens because con artists will

take advantage of circumstances that make seniors more vulnerable. Always take steps to protect yourself by checking and verifying the identity of all visitors or salespeople to your home. Don’t do business with people who approach you first. If you are asked to sign any documents or cheques, ensure that it is for a legitimate reason. Never give your credit card number, banking information or social insurance number to anyone over the phone. If in doubt, contact a trusted friend, lawyer or by all means, call your local police.”

Covered in the Guidebook are such tips as “Change your routine. Burglars often monitor activities in a neighbourhood; if going on vacation, make sure someone is checking on your home regularly; when walking around in public, do not burden yourself with packages and a bulky purse or handbag. The guidebook also deals with several kinds of fraud, what to be wary of and how to protect yourself. For instance, the book warns seniors of renovation fraud, where a handyman might show up at your

door and promise a ‘today-only deal’ for house renovations. In those cases, the book’s advice is to not rush. Take time to examine the deal, make sure a proper contract is drafted and examined by a lawyer and take time to check references for the worker and get other estimates on the job being done. The report can be found by visiting the RCMP website at and selecting Home > Reports and Publications > Contract & Aboriginal Police Services > Seniors Guidebook to Safety and Security

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Prime, Fall 2011

In motion Ken Champagne and dog Sherman were out enjoying a fall day at Transfer Beach.

Swinging time


hat if someone told you there was a place you could go, get exercise have fun with friends all for an affordable price? Believe it or not, Ladysmith has such a gem in its Ladysmith Golf Club. “They could walk it and get their exercise,” said Sylvia Smith, president of the golf club. But it’s not just the physical benefits of golf that draw people, said Smith. The regulars are a welcoming group who are always looking to incorporate a few more faces around the greens. “It’s a very friendly, easy place,” said Smith. “It’s definitely a seniors place,”

The Ladysmith & District Historical Society Urgently needs help to get the Museum up and running.

Hospice can help at a difficult time. Whether you are facing an advancing illness or grieving a death, hospice can help:

We need volunteers with the following skills: * GRAPHIC DESIGN * ELECTRICIAN * CARPENTRY * PHOTOGRAPHY * HISTORICAL RESEARCH * PRINTING/COLLAGE Please call 250 245 0100 (archives, 9-2) or 250 245 0423 (museum) For that special gift, visit us under Tim Horton’s & check out our very inexpensive historical books by local authors. Prime, Fall 2011

she added, noting coffee is always on and there is often a bridge game to play. And if you’ve never picked up a golf club in your life, never fear, said Smith. The course usually has someone around who would likely love to teach you. And if there isn’t, wait 10 minutes. “No one cares it’s your first time to golf, if you came in and said you’ve not golfed before, we’d find someone for them to go out with. All you have to do is ask.” For a couple to be full members, it costs $511 plus tax and single seniors could pay $306 plus tax. Per round is $12 and there is a two-for-one deal on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

• Compassionate emotional support • Relaxing care clinic treatments Cowichan Valley

• Information and resources


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Helping ease the final transition Gretchen Hartley Cowichan Valley Hospice


am honoured to be a volunteer with the Cowichan Valley Hospice Society. Two of my main jobs for Hospice are to co-ordinate and sit vigils for people in the very last stage of life. This week as I was sitting a vigil in one of our local facilities for the elderly I had the opportunity to meet the family of the person with whom I was sitting. I was asked, with all due respect, whether hospice is a religious organization or possibly a “cult” and I assured the family member that we are neither. I explained that we are a secular, non-denominational, volunteer organization of people committed to helping those in transition from

life to death do so in accordance with their wishes. I explained that we also provide a venue for family members affected by the impending transition to be supported and to express themselves should they feel the need. Based on my description one could easily envision a very dry and stuffy organization and group of people when, indeed, the opposite is closer to the truth. I described (to myself) our vigil group as a bunch of people who like to hang out with those who are dying and I had to laugh because it does sound pretty ghoulish! However, we believe that everyone has the innate right to make the transition from life to after-life on their own terms. Given the lack of familiarity

with the organization expressed by the family member with whom I spoke I asked our executive director what, if anything, we do to get the word out about Hospice and its services. Apparently, we do a lot. That led me to wonder why people still do not either know about us or about what we actually do? I believe that death is a difficult subject for people to deal with. So, if there is a belief or a philosophy common to those in Hospice, other than the belief that those who are dying deserve to do so as they choose, it is that death is a transition, no more and no less. It is our beliefs about the nature of that transition that, I believe, make it so problematic. Speaking solely for myself, I find it the ultimate honor to be completely

present with and for someone undergoing the final transition from humanity to spirit and as I sit quietly with someone close to “death” I find that the true spirit of the person is that with which I am sitting. And in those moments or hours everything that is extraneous to life, all the business all the distractions, all the worldly cares just cease to be and what is left is the magical connection of two spirits in a place of knowing that this never “dies”. So, what is Hospice? From my standpoint it is a wonderful, caring and committed group of people who are no longer so afraid of “death” that they cannot be present for someone else who is approaching that transition. You should check us out!

• Divorce & Family Law • Criminal Law • Civil Litigation • Immigration • Corporate & Commercial • Wills & Estates

At home and away on vacation, trust all your insurance needs to your neighbours at VIIC. Protecting islanders since 1863

• Wrongful Dismissal • Real Estate & Mortgages

BASTION LAW GROUP Lawyers & Notaries Ronald E. Peters Stephen T. Littley Laura E. Allen Krystal C. Tan Debby A. Baker, Paralegal Kara M.C. Duncan, Articled Student Izabella P. Filip, Articled Student


250-753-5372 Fax 250-753-5368 405-235 Bastion St., Nanaimo 410A First Ave., Ladysmith

Prime, Fall 2011

Technology skills

Insurance and investing have changed.

Decoding the latest trends


eeling flustered with new technology? Thanks to a Ladysmith group, you can abandon your fears and embrace technological advancement. The 50+ computer club meets on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m. at the Ladysmith Secondary School. Nita Grant, who has helped revive the club, said the club is for people of all skill levels. “Some people don’t even know how to turn them on and others know how to build them,” said Grant. The class is a pressure-free environment where people can get comfortable with all things wired. “They soon learn they can’t do anything to wreck it,” Grant said. Computer teacher Marky

Henkel-Vogelzang is on hand to help people get over their fears and learn about everything from basic use to explaining the latest trends. Henkel-Vogelzang said often when technology changes, the new systems can become hard to navigate. Classes like this, Grant said, are getting more important as technology advances quickly. The class even covers such procedures as how to use a digital camera, download and store the photos. There is also computer help/Internet time available at the Ladysmith Resources Centre. For more information, call 250-245-3079.

Mutual funds have given way to segregated funds which offer guarantees. Timing is everything. Let me help you eliminate the risks of timing and provide a solid, life long retirement income for you.

Come by and let me get to know you. Sean Jonas

PJ Financial

Life, Mortgage and Travel Insurance, Seg. Funds 3B 32 High Street, Ladysmith (across from the post office)

Ph/Fax 250-924-3317

Ladysmith Health Care Auxiliary Our volunteer members operate and manage numerous programs in the community to provide services and generate funds to assist other nonprofit health related programs.

Volunteers Make a Difference! Join Us Today! Ph: 250-245-5225

home medical equipment

you to r close complete product selection


ake ’t M ? It In r Fo Call me o In-H ice r e S v

walkers/rollators t scooters t wheelchairs seating systems t canes/crutches t lift chairs stairlifts/porchlifts t braces/supports bedroom safety t aids to daily living adjustable beds t van conversions

personalized service free in-home trials/assessments in-house service department home delivery/set-up t rentals assistance with funding


6481-B Portsmouth Rd, Nanaimo (250)933-0600 (beside Ono’s - between Canadian Tire & Costco)


Prime, Fall 2011

Nanaimo - 2517 Bowen Rd (USED/CONSIGN) - 2110 Northfield Rd Duncan - 2628 Beverly St Powell River - 4488 Marine Ave shop online at

(250) 756-9875 (250) 756-9878 (250) 709-9939 (604) 485-9310 1-800-667-1406 15

Pharmasave Celebrates Seniors Every Day! Every day seniors receive 10% off regular prices. On the last Wednesday of every month, seniors receive 15% off regular prices. (some restrictions apply)

Services we offer: • Free prescription delivery • Medication management • Medication compliance packaging • Diabetic metre downloads and reports • “Rx Canada” medication information • Private consultations • Health and wellness clinics • Flu and travel vaccines • Home health care rentals and services • Compression stocking fittings • Full service cosmetics • Great giftware, greeting cards & confections • Lottery, gift cards and phone cards

And, of course, the friendly and knowledgeable customer service you’ve come to expect from Pharmasave.

We have expanded our Home Healthcare selection to serve you better.

Just a trolley ride away from your door. Visit us today. Hours - Monday to Saturday 9am to 6pm Sundays and Holidays Noon to 5pm 441 First Ave., Ladysmith

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Prime, Fall 2011

Prime 55+ Magazine  

Your guide to Senior's activites and services on the Ladysmith, Chemianus area on Vancouver Island