Elders Financial Abuse Awareness Dialogue Projects Celebrated
On Tuesday, March 22, 2011, over a hundred people gathered at the Heritage Hall on Main Street in Vancouver to celebrate the projects completed by seniors groups in the Elders Financial Abuse Awareness Dialogue Project.
Launched in February 2010, the project’s goals were to increase awareness and knowledge amongst ethno-cultural seniors in the Lower Mainland on how to prevent financial abuse, and build relationships with Neighbourhood Houses and immigrant service providers.
It is estimated that one in 12 seniors in BC experience some form of financial abuse, and 5% of older British Columbians living at home experience one or more forms of abuse from family members.
Project Lead Jessie Sutherland of Finding Home says, “There was a great need to reach out to ethno-cultural communities to raise awareness about elder abuse. As a facilitator, my hope is to support everyone in the Dialogue to bring this awareness out into the community and offer a space to share stories about these challenges, connect with each other, and learn about community resources.”
Throughout the course of the Dialogue Project, seniors of Afghan, South Asian, Punjabi, Iranian, and other multicultural backgrounds from the North Shore, Burnaby, and Vancouver identified root causes of elder financial abuse in their communities, and created educational tools and projects. At the event, group participants showcased the projects that they have created including a puppet show and storytelling.
Initial United Way funding helped to kick this project off.