What is your organization mission statement and values?
Active Aging in Manitoba (AAIM) is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to promoting active aging opportunities for all older Manitobans to enhance their health, mobility, and continuing participation in their community. We are also the provincial organization responsible for the planning and implementation of the annual Manitoba 55+ Games. Our office is located inside the Wellness Institute at Seven Oaks General Hospital, 1075 Leila Avenue in Winnipeg.
What types of programs, services or events is your organization currently offering?Active Aging in Manitoba programs are designed to change the attitudes of all Manitobans towards healthy aging. Volunteer peer leaders are our core resource. These well-trained volunteers lead exercise classes, walking programs and facilitate presentations to educate all walks of life and all age ranges.
- Steppin’ up with Confidence is a peer-led exercise program that trains volunteers at no charge and supports them in offering free classes for older adults within their communities. Steppin’ Up with Confidence is a program of Active Aging in Manitoba and was developed in partnership with the Manitoba Fitness Council. Some of our Peer Leaders are currently offering their classes online and via television until in-person can be resumed. All Manitobans 55 years of age or older interested in healthy, active aging and a desire to lead an exercise class for their peers are encouraged to get involved. Contact our Master Trainer – Linda Brown at - firstname.lastname@example.org
Older adult volunteers who have completed training with AAIM present on various healthy aging and wellness topics in partnership with AAIM member organizations and partners. We are currently offering the following presentations at no charge to any community in Manitoba, virtually and in-person, if permitted under public health orders:
- Ten Habits to a Healthy Lifestyles
- Staying on your Feet – Falls Prevention
- Active Living
- Healthy Habits for a Healthy Brain
Manitoba 55+ Games is a cornerstone program that AAIM has offered for many years. This year, our Games, sponsored by Playnow.com, went virtual and were provided throughout the entire summer, versus a 3-day event hosted by a community in Manitoba. Interested individuals were required to register, track their activities on an activity tracker and then submit their stories and pictures at the end of the event to be eligible for prizes.
AAIM is also acts as an active living resource for older adults in Manitoba and is the backbone agency behind Active Aging week each year in October, part of our Manitoba Seniors & Elders Month.Are there any upcoming programs, projects, or event your organization would like to share?
Take a Minute to Move TWOgether, built on our Take a Minute to Move Campaign, encouraging Older adults to move more, sit less and feel better throughout their day. AAIM Steppin’ Up with Confidence Peer Leaders will be reaching out to isolated older adults in their communities, and encouraging them to move more, sit less and feel better throughout their day, but more importantly, be a social connection for someone. Older adults can also call AAIM and be paired up with a volunteer who will guide them through a series of exercises that will be mailed out to them in advance of their first phone call or virtual meeting.
Be Winter Active: Don’t Hibernate!
a free webinar in partnership with Fort Whyte Alive
Wed., November 17 from noon – 1 pm
Registration required: https://bit.ly/3m0PGJwFalls Prevention - November is Falls Prevention Month.
Linda Brown, AAIM’s Master Trainer & Certified Fall Prevention Educator, will be providing fall prevention tips throughout November.
What are the two or three biggest challenges your organization face? While we are doing our best offering training sessions, webinars, meetings via online platforms; connecting with volunteers, and the older adults we serve hasn’t always been easy. Many do not have computer access or good Wi-Fi connectivity where they live. We know that in-person is often better, we are doing the best we can. We are using the telephone lot these days. Having to pivot quickly. For example, we received a TD Park People grant and offered A Walk in the Park event in Kildonan Park. A day before our event, Manitoba went into Code Orange. We quickly altered our plans while still getting our message across; the health benefits of connecting with parks and nature. It is essential to AAIM that we keep everyone safe, abiding by public health orders.How many employees are currently employed in your organization?
We are a very small organization, with only three employees and a large core of volunteers.Can you give us some two or three points of pride?
The development of our Take a Minute to Move Campaign. We partnered with CJNU nostalgia radio and encouraged individuals to move more – sit less – and feel better throughout their day while staying safe at home. We created practical, easy exercises which aired three times a day; 8:30 am, 1:30 pm, and 5:30 pm on weekdays; 9:30 am, 12:30 pm and 2:30 pm on weekends, February 15 through to April 4, 2021. You can access these exercises at Take a Minute to Move - Active Aging in Manitoba, listen to the audio, or access our handouts.
Our Peer Leaders took it upon themselves to continue reaching out to their participants during the pandemic, learning how to use virtual platforms to teach and even working with a local television station in Neepawa, which MTS cable also picked up. You can watch channel 1030 at 10:30 am on MTS cable if you’re able to access and participate in a Steppin’ up with Confidence class. Many of our Peer Leaders are continuing to offer their classes virtually and in – person following Public Health Guidelines.
The Manitoba 55+ Virtual Games were a resounding success with over 45 communities in Manitoba participating (Participant Map - Active Aging in Manitoba (activeagingmb.ca)), many who otherwise wouldn’t have been able to participate; ** I would add – Assisted living facilities and Day Hospital Programs to participants in The Pas and Flin Flon, Manitoba. As a result, we are considering a hybrid model moving forward to be more inclusive for all Manitobans to participate and have fun!
The Games this summer was a great success for our clients who really enjoyed the Virtual component of the Games this year! Thank you for the opportunity to participate! - Cheryl Lindsay B.R.S, Recreation Facilitator, Riverview Day Hospital
I participated in the 18-hole golf events - from June 14 to July 14. I golfed everyday except for 2 days when the temperature was 37 degrees. I was grateful to be able to participate because recently two of my best friends were diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. I still have my health although my golf game certainly is not what it used to be. I have been participating in the senior games since they began. I missed 1 year. Thank you for organizing the 55 plus games despite COVID restrictions. Will be hoping for actual competitions next year. Ida Theodore, Age 82