GWSA 2021-2022 Annual Report

Create successful ePaper yourself

Turn your PDF publications into a flip-book with our unique Google optimized e-Paper software.

April 1, <strong>2021</strong> - March 31, <strong>2022</strong><br />

Guelph Wellington Seniors Association<br />

Evergreen Seniors Community Centre<br />

683 Woolwich Street<br />

Guelph, Ontario<br />



Board Overview<br />

This has been a year of transition as we emerged from the pandemic and launched a return to<br />

gathering with others. We appreciate the individuals who contributed to this <strong>Annual</strong> <strong>Report</strong><br />

which summarizes our <strong>2021</strong>-<strong>2022</strong> fiscal year for members of the Association.<br />

Through the past year, the United Way and the City of Guelph have provided generous support<br />

to our hard-working team, which helped alleviate issues of food insecurity and isolation for<br />

vulnerable seniors. During the shutdown, the City of Guelph waived lease expenses, allowing us<br />

to put your membership fees on hold.<br />

Organizations have faced challenges through this time, and we were not immune. The United<br />

Way received fewer donations and we learned that the funding for our Community Support<br />

Programs would be heavily impacted, initially requiring the closure of the Move Well Program.<br />

Later, as the grant details unfolded, the Board faced the difficult decision to transition remaining<br />

CSS programs to other agencies which have the resources needed to support such services. This<br />

impacted our budget, valued services, and the employment of amazing staff.<br />

The Board extends appreciation to the volunteers who serve on <strong>GWSA</strong> Committees and as<br />

Activity Group Leaders. They have offered outstanding programming and have been<br />

instrumental in getting members back to activities with their friends. Here are some noteworthy<br />

accomplishments:<br />

The ‘Launch Team’, <strong>GWSA</strong> Email Update Editor, and Webmaster partnered to provide<br />

timely communication as the situation changed<br />

Staff and directors collaborated to get members back as soon as possible, initially through<br />

the use of waivers, proof of vaccination and DocuSign, temporary In-Person Play<br />

ACCESS cards, masking rules, and capacity limits – until legislation later addressed<br />

matters<br />

Activity groups developed ‘Return-to-Play Plans’ for Board approval to meet regulatory<br />

and public health requirements<br />

The volunteers at The Sentinel continued to produce monthly newsletters online while<br />

returning to printing, including this <strong>Annual</strong> <strong>Report</strong><br />

Our ‘Launch Team’, including the Executive Committee and City staff, collaborated on<br />

the best way to manage membership records and scheduling, and agreed on the use of<br />

Perfect Mind membership management platform<br />

The <strong>GWSA</strong> Board of Directors remains committed to the <strong>GWSA</strong> vision of a future that is<br />

inclusive, progressive, and innovative in offering opportunities for older adults in Guelph. Part of<br />

our moving forward included rebranding a former management position into that of Executive<br />

Director, so that this organization will be better positioned for sustainability, while adding a<br />

consistent presence to manage the daily business of the Association.<br />

While we move through and beyond the recent challenges, this report celebrates the<br />

accomplishments of our resilient staff, dedicated directors, and hundreds of creative volunteers.<br />

Thank you for your ongoing support of the <strong>GWSA</strong>.<br />



<strong>GWSA</strong> BOARD OF DIRECTORS ..…………………………………………………….. 5<br />

<strong>GWSA</strong> EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR ……………………………………………………… 7<br />

CITY OF GUELPH STAFF ..……………………………………………………………. 8<br />


SECTION OVERVIEW ……………………………………………………………………….. 10<br />

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE …………………………………………………………………... 10<br />

HUMAN RESOURCES COMMITTEE ……………………………………………………….... 11<br />

FINANCE COMMITTEE …………………………………………………………………….. 11<br />

TREASURER ………..……………………………………………………...…………….…. 12<br />

<strong>GWSA</strong> BUDGET <strong>2021</strong>-<strong>2022</strong> ($) ……………………………………………………………. 13<br />

CHARTS FOR INCOME AND EXPENSES …………………………………………..…………. 14<br />

GOVERNANCE COMMITTEE ……………………………………………………………….. 15<br />

PROGRAM COMMITTEE …………………………..………………………..………………. 16<br />

COMMUNITY SUPPORT SERVICES ……...………………………………………………….. 16<br />

MEMBERSHIP & MARKETING COMMITTEE ………………..…………………………….... 17<br />

VOLUNTEER ADVISORY COMMITTEE …….……..……………..………………………….. 18<br />


TECHNOLOGY ADVISORY COMMITTEE ...……………..…………………………………... 20<br />

THE SENTINEL ………………………………..……………………………….………….... 21<br />

THE WEB TEAM ………………….…….……………..……………………………………. 22<br />

ACTIVITY GROUP REPORTS ……………………………………………………………….. 23<br />

BADMINTON CLUB ……………………………………………………………………….. 23<br />

BOOK CLUB 1 ……………………………………………………………………………... 24<br />

BOOK NOOK ..………………………………………………………………………….…. 24<br />

BUNKA ..……………………………………………………………………….…………. 25<br />

CANOE CLUB ……………………………………………………………………………… 25<br />

CASUAL BICYCLING …………………………………………………………….………… 26<br />

CRAFT CLUB …………………………………………………………………………….... 26<br />

INTO FOCUS PHOTOGRAPHY CLUB ……………………………………………………….. 26<br />

LINE DANCING ……………………………………………………………………………. 27<br />

QUILTING GROUP …………………………………………………………………………. 27<br />

RUG HOOKING ……………………………………………………………………………. 27<br />

SHUFFLEBOARD ………………………………………………………………………….. 27<br />

SILVER STRUMMERS ……………………………………………………………………... 28<br />

SILVERTONES CHOIR ……………………………………………………………………... 28<br />

TABLE TENNIS …………………………………………………………………………..... 29<br />

TRAVEL COMMITTEE ……………………………………………………………….…….. 30<br />

WATERCOLOURS …………………………………………………………………….….... 31<br />

WOOD CARVING ……………………………………………………………..…….…….. 31<br />

CITY OF GUELPH SENIOR SERVICES .…………….……….…………………………..…….…….. 32<br />

THANKS TO OUR CONTRIBUTORS ………………………………………………………...….……. 33<br />

DONORS AND SUPPORTERS .…………………………….………………………….……….…….. 33<br />


<strong>GWSA</strong> <strong>2021</strong>-<strong>2022</strong> Board of Directors<br />

Two Directors left the Board during <strong>2021</strong>-<strong>2022</strong>. We were sorry to hear of the passing of Mike<br />

Woof on July 19 after many years of service, and past President Becky Fiedler left the Board on<br />

September 30 having contributed much to the organization. This section includes the biographies<br />

of Directors who formed the Board as our fiscal year closed on March 31, <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

Charlie Bishop is looking ahead to retirement where he can engage in the community doing<br />

something he enjoys. His previous experiences include: design and development of products for<br />

global, world class, high tech companies such as Nortel and BlackBerry, Chairman and<br />

Executive Director on an international Board of Directors for a wireless consortium which<br />

brought not only technology aspects but HR, multiple years of IT support/implementation,<br />

finance and business. Charlie has extensive background in technology and is looking to apply<br />

that background to give back to the <strong>GWSA</strong> community. Charlie is a forward thinker, seeing the<br />

bigger picture. His motivation is seeing opportunities to do things and having them come to<br />

fruition. If he sees something that isn’t working, he is able to create ways to move forward.<br />

Ken Fugler has been an active member of <strong>GWSA</strong> for several years. He was elected as President<br />

of the Evergreen Canoe Club at its inception in 2009 and currently is on the Membership &<br />

Marketing Committee. Ken is a Graduate of Ryerson in Aeronautical Engineering and was an<br />

Officer in the RCAF military. His career was in project management and sales of custom<br />

manufactured machinery, where he gained experience dealing with complicated legal quote<br />

requests and purchases. Ken was elected to the Board in May 2019. Recently, he began leading<br />

the Guelph Carving Club which joined the <strong>GWSA</strong> in the fall of <strong>2021</strong>.<br />

Pat Gage came to the Board with a background in administration and human resources. She<br />

worked at Trent University for over 20 years, Gage Health Systems, and you know her best for<br />

her time at the Evergreen Seniors Community Centre as the administrative assistant for<br />

Community Support Services until retirement in December 2019. She has sat on the Board for<br />

the Guelph Curling Club, Treasurer for the Board of the Volunteer Association of Guelph<br />

General Hospital, and presently as <strong>GWSA</strong> Board member and Chair of the Program Committee.<br />

Pat is also a crafter. She belongs to the Royal City Quilt Guild, the <strong>GWSA</strong> Quilt Group and<br />

Into Focus Photography Group. She is an avid quilter, knitter and enjoys her little garden.<br />

As COVID restrictions are loosened, she looks forward to working with the Board, Activity<br />

Group Leaders, and members of the <strong>GWSA</strong> community to help build a strong, inviting<br />

environment for all seniors.<br />

Wenda King’s career of 42 years prior to retirement was with a large insurance company where<br />

she was an Operational Regional Manager for 28 years. She is a 20-year-plus volunteer at<br />

Guelph General Hospital where she is a buyer and merchandiser for the hospital boutique.<br />

She is a member of the Human Resources Committee of her church, as well as holding the<br />

position as a Trustee and a member of their Endowment committee.<br />

Wenda became a member of the <strong>GWSA</strong> Board and the Membership & Marketing Committee<br />

in 2020 and now serves as Chair of the Committee.<br />


Ross Knechtel is active with the Computer Club, Computer Mentoring, the Into Focus<br />

Photography Club, the Silvertones Choir, and the Membership & Marketing Committee. Ross<br />

was elected to the <strong>GWSA</strong> Board of Directors in 2017 and he resigned in March of 2019 in order<br />

to go public about the controversial “secret meeting” regarding the future of <strong>GWSA</strong> Community<br />

Support Services. He was re-elected at the Special Members Meeting held on May 13, 2019, to<br />

serve the balance of a three-year term. At the 2020 AGM, he was elected to an additional threeyear<br />

term on the Board of Directors.<br />

Teresa McKeeman spent 31 years working as a frontline worker and in administration in the<br />

social services department at the County of Wellington. She was actively involved in the<br />

Steering Group that led to the development of the Better Beginnings, Better Futures parent<br />

support program in the Shelldale community. Since retirement, she has been an avid volunteer<br />

with different community programs, including a number of years at <strong>GWSA</strong> with the Community<br />

Support Services. She is particularly interested in the <strong>GWSA</strong> strategic priority of ensuring<br />

programs and services are diverse and equitable and she looks forward to exploring opportunities<br />

to increase our presence in the community.<br />

Janice Robertson has been a lifelong resident of Guelph and a member of the Senior Centre<br />

since her retirement in 2007. Janice taught elementary school with a variety of teaching<br />

specialties, as well as regular classroom grades. She taught all grades from 1-8 as well as<br />

Special Education classes, Learning Disability, Behaviour and Gifted. She finished her career at<br />

College Avenue School as a resource teacher. She is pleased to be on the Board to contribute to<br />

the vibrant and necessary programs that the senior community in Guelph enjoys due to the<br />

Evergreen staff and volunteers.<br />

Brian Smith joined the <strong>GWSA</strong> in 2019 and became President in <strong>2021</strong>. He chairs the Board of<br />

Directors, Executive Committee, Governance Committee, and Human Resources Management<br />

Committee, and is actively managing the website. Brian brings diverse qualifications and<br />

experience from a career of 37 years in education. As a school administrator, he provided<br />

leadership on many committees, became a founding member of the local Ontario Principals’<br />

Council, and received Supervisory Officer certification from the Ministry of Education. He<br />

recently completed six years on the Board of Directors of Shelldale Family Gateway, which<br />

supports a diverse community, including many of Guelph’s most vulnerable children, youth, and<br />

adults.<br />

Roger Stevens, prior to retirement, worked for NCR as a Customer Service representative for 26<br />

years. He served as a volunteer for the CSS Outreach program, along with his wife Kathy. He is<br />

also a member of the Canoe Club. He previously has served as Treasurer for the Canadian<br />

Speedway Racing Association. Roger was elected to the Board in May 2019 and is serving on<br />

the <strong>GWSA</strong> Board as Treasurer.<br />

Adam Rutherford (City Representative) is the City of Guelph’s Program Manager of<br />

Programming and Community Development. For more than 20 years, Adam has been working<br />

with, advocating for, and developing programs in partnership with community members of all<br />

ages. Adam’s work has focused on engagement, innovative program development, and the needs<br />

of marginalized and underserved populations. He’s a middle-aged skateboarder, lover of film and<br />


music, a big thinker that prefers intimate environments, and always on the run. If his door’s<br />

open, come in and say hi! Adam is the City of Guelph’s representative on the <strong>GWSA</strong> Board of<br />

Directors.<br />

Brooke Gibbons is the Interim Recreation Program Co-ordinator – Seniors – Culture and<br />

Recreation. She has worked in various roles within the City of Guelph over the past four years,<br />

but recently, all of her attention has been put into researching and developing new recreation<br />

programs for the senior community. Brooke has been appointed secretary for the <strong>GWSA</strong> and<br />

looks forward to working alongside all <strong>GWSA</strong> members to support their initiatives and goals.<br />

Tonie MacInnis has temporarily transitioned into a new role of Supervisor of Programs &<br />

Community Development within the City of Guelph. This position oversees all City of Guelph<br />

recreation programs from preschool through to and including the Senior Services portfolio.<br />

Tonie’s permanent position with the City of Guelph is the Recreation Program Co-ordinator –<br />

Seniors and Recreation Services – Culture and Recreation. She has worked in various roles<br />

within the Corporation of the City of Guelph over the past eight years, but recently, all of her<br />

attention has been put into developing new and exciting recreational programs for the<br />

Guelph community. Tonie was appointed co-secretary for the <strong>GWSA</strong> and has been working<br />

alongside all <strong>GWSA</strong> members to support their initiatives and goals.<br />

<strong>GWSA</strong> – Executive Director<br />

Linda Jeffrey, our new executive director, arrived for her first day at the Evergreen Seniors<br />

Community Centre on January 4 th , and she says that the last five months certainly have not been<br />

boring.<br />

As Executive Director, it is her job to collaborate with community groups and outside agencies<br />

in the delivery of programs and services. She has been working to secure and grow broaderbased<br />

funding for our sustained operation by working with groups like Immigrant Services<br />

Guelph Wellington, The Guelph Lions Club, and the Older Adult Centres Association of<br />

Ontario. In May, two Board Members joined her in attending and hosting a table at the Lions<br />

Healthy Aging Roadshow at the West End Community Centre and Victoria Road Recreation<br />

Centre. They met people new to Guelph and former members who had let their membership<br />

lapse who were interested in becoming more active, involved, and making friends. This outreach<br />

is essential, and this fall, we intend to partner with some of the organizations we met that first<br />

weekend, as well as other new partners, to bring exciting new programming to the Evergreen and<br />

to other locations throughout Guelph.<br />

She brags to her friends that she has one of the loveliest work environments – she is regularly<br />

serenaded by the Silvertones Choir and the Silver Strummers!<br />


City of Guelph Staff<br />

The <strong>GWSA</strong> appreciates the support and diligence of City Staff who work directly with us.<br />

Danna Evans<br />

Lynne Briggs<br />

Adam Rutherford<br />

Tonie MacInnis<br />

Brooke Gibbons<br />

Becky MacDonald<br />

Jocelynn Desroches<br />

Sheri-Lyn Roy<br />

Don Harris<br />

Drew Steadman (new in <strong>2022</strong>)<br />

Jill Hunt (new in <strong>2022</strong>)<br />

General Manager of Culture and Recreation<br />

Manager of Recreation Services<br />

Manager of Senior Services: Board Member,<br />

Executive, Advocacy, Governance, Finance,<br />

Community Support Services Advisory Committees<br />

Recreation Program Co-ordinator – Seniors Recreation<br />

Services - Culture and Recreation<br />

Interim Recreation Program Co-ordinator – Seniors<br />

Recreation Services - Culture and Recreation<br />

Recreation Co-ordinator – Volunteers<br />

Chef of Bistro 683 (Evergreen Dining Room)<br />

Customer Service Clerk: Membership & Marketing<br />

Committee<br />

Facility Cleaner – assisting with room set-ups,<br />

cleaning and maintaining of <strong>GWSA</strong> physical assets<br />

Sous Chef Bistro 683 (Evergreen Dining Room)<br />

Customer Service Clerk: Recreation Services:<br />

Membership & Marketing Committee<br />


Organization Chart and Standing Committee <strong>Report</strong>s<br />

______________________________________________________<br />


Section Overview<br />

An <strong>Annual</strong> <strong>Report</strong> presents the accomplishments and results of the previous year. In this section,<br />

we share a summary of activities and efforts undertaken by those on the <strong>GWSA</strong>’s standing<br />

committees.<br />

Where available, we used summary reports submitted by the person who chaired the<br />

respective committee throughout the previous year. In other instances, one or more committee<br />

members provided the summary presented here. The name of the person submitting the report is<br />

provided at the end.<br />

Where no report was submitted by the previous committee, we reviewed the committee’s<br />

meeting minutes from the past year and prepared a summary. We also preview future plans for<br />

the committee.<br />

Executive Committee<br />

Executive Committee Members: Brian Smith (Chair), Roger Stevens, Pat Gage, Adam<br />

Rutherford<br />

The purpose of the <strong>GWSA</strong> Executive Committee is to handle matters referred to it by the full<br />

Board, and to manage the affairs of the Board as needed between meetings where authority has<br />

been granted.<br />

In the summer, the Executive Committee engaged available directors to form an ad hoc ‘launch<br />

team’ to work through the complicated stages of reopening. Considerable time was devoted early<br />

in the year to investigating the best way to manage our membership records, finances, and group<br />

schedules. The organization requires meaningful access to records to effectively serve the<br />

members, and it was timely to consider possibilities as we anticipated reopening our in-person<br />

activities last fall. We explored what was available, compared features, and assessed cost of<br />

hardware, operation, maintenance, and needed supports. After spirited discussions, lengthy<br />

meetings, and reconsideration, we recommended the Board collaborate closely with the City of<br />

Guelph to make the most effective use of their Perfect Mind software. This has been gratefully<br />

supported with thanks to City staff who continue to work with us. With some adjustments, this<br />

has turned out to work in our best interests while offering considerable savings in cost and<br />

human resources.<br />

Considerable time and energy was given to the stages of reopening for the fall, with the<br />

introduction of new policies, COVID-19 waivers, IPP Access cards, DocuSign process for Proof<br />

of Vaccination, and providing new membership cards with extended dates for everyone. Having<br />

groups return to in-person play required another layer of processing to ensure we met all the<br />

health requirements. Much of this has thankfully passed, and we are thrilled that so many<br />

members were able to return well ahead of many organizations.<br />

Through much of the year, the Executive Committee has continued to meet on short notice and<br />

maintain frequent contact through email to be responsive to the many daily matters that tend to<br />

arise in such a busy organization. Fortunately, this has been a solid team that was able to work<br />

closely together with the members interests always in mind.<br />


Human Resources Management Committee<br />

Committee members: Brian Smith (chair), Linda Jeffrey, Roger Stevens, Adam Rutherford.<br />

Emma Whittaker served on the committee until she left in November.<br />

The Human Resources Management Committee is responsible for administering policies,<br />

procedures, legal and legislative requirements relating to its role as an employer. During the<br />

<strong>2021</strong>-<strong>2022</strong> fiscal year, the Committee:<br />

Accepted Emma Whittaker’s resignation as Community Support Services Manager;<br />

Reimagined the CSS Manager’s role to become the Executive Director position;<br />

Conducted interviews, and hired Linda Jeffrey as the <strong>GWSA</strong> Executive Director;<br />

<br />

<br />

Extended contracts for CSS staff and the financial administrator; and<br />

Provided a letter of termination to the CSS Move Well Program Co-ordinator as funding<br />

for the program ended.<br />

We can also share that, after the close of the fiscal year, we received resignations from two CSS<br />

staff and provided one notice of termination, all associated with the loss of funding and the<br />

transition of Community Support Services to other agencies. In May, we received a letter of<br />

resignation from the financial administrator and proceeded to outsource those services.<br />

Finance Committee<br />

Committee Members: Roger Stevens (Treasurer), Wendi Hake (Financial Administrator), Joe<br />

Freamo, Earlby Wakefield, Randy Taylor, Ruth Slavin (Secretary)<br />

The Finance Committee was established to advise and assist the <strong>GWSA</strong> Board and the Treasurer<br />

in the development and monitoring of:<br />

● Financial Policies and Procedures of the <strong>GWSA</strong><br />

● Financial Operations of all Activities and Services of the <strong>GWSA</strong><br />

The Finance Committee met at 1:00 p.m. on the third Tuesday of several months throughout the<br />

year; it was not accomplished monthly because of the ongoing pandemic and the lack of<br />

meaningful activities. What meetings we had over Zoom were to discuss Financial Statements<br />

and any other item that needed to be resolved. We finally returned to our face-to-face meetings<br />

in September.<br />

In March, the Committee reviewed the <strong>2022</strong>/2023 budget and forwarded recommendations to the<br />

Board.<br />

The final Board-approved budget is included in this <strong>Annual</strong> <strong>Report</strong>.<br />

The annual budget is a critical tool for the Treasurer and Finance Committee to judge if the<br />

Association is staying on course, ensuring financial health. <strong>GWSA</strong>’s 40+ activity groups played<br />

a large part in preparing the overall <strong>GWSA</strong> budget.<br />


Each activity group has submitted their budget for the coming year and which were submitted to<br />

the Finance Committee for their approval and to assist in mitigating risk. The Finance<br />

Committee then submitted their results and recommendations to the Board for their final<br />

approval.<br />

The Committee is also responsible for reviewing investment strategies to assist in mitigating risk<br />

of <strong>GWSA</strong>’s funds. The Committee forwards their findings to the Board for approval.<br />

If you have experience in non-profit organizations and are interested in working on the Finance<br />

Committee, please fill out a Committee Volunteer form indicating your availability.<br />

Treasurer’s <strong>Report</strong><br />

We finally got back to the Centre and everyone who has returned seems to be doing well.<br />

Financially, not the best since we did not have a full year again. A loss, but nothing our reserves<br />

can’t handle.<br />

Our investments are still secure, and while we have not invested more, mainly because of the<br />

COVID situation, our investments are still in good shape.<br />

My thanks once again to our Financial Administrator, who has gone above and beyond.<br />

Since this is my last day as Treasurer (June 21 st ), I want to take this opportunity to thank<br />

everyone at the Evergreen for their support, sometimes during difficult times. I hope I have done<br />

well for you and the organization and I wish you all well.<br />




Governance Committee<br />

This Committee included Brian Smith (chair), Lloyd LeBlanc, and Adam Rutherford (ex<br />

officio).<br />

The Governance Committee oversees the operation of the Board to ensure its actions comply<br />

with legislation and the <strong>GWSA</strong> By-law and Policies. The committee advises and assists the<br />

Board in the development, implementation and review of all documents that govern its work,<br />

including drafting policies when requested to do so by the Board.<br />

Over the past three years, this Governance Committee made impressive progress, reviewing well<br />

over a hundred policies and procedures, position descriptions, and committee terms of reference.<br />

The Committee updated the Index of Policies and Procedures after each change, maintained the<br />

electronic files, and tracked the dates of original approval, revision, and latest Board approval.<br />

This helps guide our work and what needs to be done next. Hard copies of everything, including<br />

all Board minutes, have been provided to the Library for member access.<br />

The Committee received no requests by the September deadline for revisions to terms of<br />

reference and position descriptions, leading us to understand those were now in good form. This<br />

proved to be helpful as all directors were immersed in the work of re-opening the <strong>GWSA</strong> as soon<br />

as possible. The Board managed a fast-paced pandemic environment that temporarily made for<br />

COVID waivers, In-Person Play cards, Proof of Vaccination, and use of DocuSign, and<br />

developing related policies. That got everyone back to the Centre well before most other<br />

organizations, to the benefit of all. We were eventually able to move beyond those temporary<br />

measures as legislation caught up with our measures after a few months.<br />

Because the Committee was not fully comprised, and there was some limited connectivity<br />

through the winter and spring, policy revisions were made with the chair taking priority revisions<br />

directly to Board for debate and approval. While functional, this was less than ideal due to the<br />

Board meeting time required. We hope the Governance Committee can be fully comprised with<br />

an injection of additional members once the next Board is installed.<br />

A very high priority moving forward should be the transition to the Ontario Not-for-Profit<br />

Corporations Act (ONCA), enacted last fall, which involves a thorough review of the <strong>GWSA</strong><br />

By-law and related policies. This initiative needs to be completed and approved by members<br />

before October 19, 2024, and there remains a small handful of policies that would still benefit<br />

from cyclical review.<br />

If you have an interest in policy development and review, record keeping, or keeping everyone<br />

aligned with requirements, the Governance Committee is a rewarding place to become involved<br />

and learn more about the <strong>GWSA</strong> and how non-profit boards work.<br />


Program Committee<br />

Pat Gage – Chair<br />

Bonnie Snider – Secretary<br />

Brooke Gibbons – City Representative<br />

And all 38 Program Group Leaders<br />

The Program Committee meets the 4 th Thursday of each month at 9:30 am. We meet one week<br />

after the Board meeting to keep Activity Group Leaders up-to-date as soon as possible of things<br />

going on around the Centre. Due to COVID, the committee has been meeting via Zoom for the<br />

past 2 years. Now that COVID restrictions have been lifted, we are meeting face to face.<br />

Objective<br />

The future holds the unknown. COVID is still around and we must live with this disease but we<br />

also must be safe. Hopefully, we will build our groups to capacity and help our seniors enjoy<br />

their time at the Evergreen Seniors Community Centre. We have lost some groups due to<br />

COVID, members finding other things to keep themselves busy, and those who have passed on.<br />

However, our new groups include Wood Carving, Rug Hooking and the Silver Strummers. A<br />

couple of new groups starting in September include “Write Your Own Story” and “Seniors<br />

Volleyball”. We are always looking for new groups to keep us busy – maybe Genealogy, Plays<br />

& Poems, and, of course, our pilot project of Saturday Night Dances. Look on the <strong>GWSA</strong><br />

website (<strong>GWSA</strong>-Guelph.ca) for more information about how to start a new group. Some groups<br />

like Pickleball and Badminton are full to capacity and have wait lists.<br />

Future Goals<br />

Encourage new members, and those already members, to try new things. Send in ideas for new<br />

groups. Fill the rooms at the Evergreen Seniors Community Centre with seniors laughing and<br />

living life.<br />

Respectfully Submitted<br />

Pat Gage<br />

Chair – Program Committee<br />

Community Support Services<br />

For over a decade, Community Support Services (CSS) and their clients have been a valued part<br />

of the <strong>GWSA</strong>. The Guelph Wellington Seniors Association has regularly partnered with the City<br />

of Guelph and agencies like the United Way to offer programs to older adults in our community.<br />

Last year, we submitted letters of intent for all our CSS Programs to the United Way. As a nonprofit<br />

association, we have always depended on outside funding sources – primarily grants, and<br />

throughout the years, we have submitted dozens of applications. For this funding cycle, the<br />

United Way received requests for more than three times what was available to allocate. As a<br />

result, the United Way Board had to make some incredibly difficult funding decisions.<br />

In the fall, we learned that we would lose all the funding to continue the Move Well Gentle<br />

Exercise program. Then this February, we learned the United Way would be reducing funding<br />


for our remaining CSS services by about 76%. We spent months exploring how to minimize the<br />

disruption to CSS programming – we could not help remembering what had happened back in<br />

2019 when a previous Board planned to stop offering these outreach programs and many<br />

directors resigned. This Board came to the rescue and stood up for services we believed in and,<br />

until now, we were able to deliver. With the loss of most United Way funding, the <strong>GWSA</strong><br />

wrestled with options and decided the only way to continue such supports was to transition our<br />

existing programs to other willing agencies and organizations that had funds available.<br />

In April, we worked with Compass to transition our Seniors Offering Support (SOS) telephone<br />

program to Compass’s existing Telephone Support Services, which include Distress Line,<br />

TeleConnect and LGBTQ+ Support Lines. In addition to assuming the program, Compass<br />

welcomed the SOS volunteers, thus ensuring the seamless continuation of service and<br />

established trusted connections between volunteers and clients.<br />

Over the last few months, we have been in discussion with Older Adult Centres Association of<br />

Ontario who have been conducting a 3-year project called Links2Wellbeing, which helps older<br />

adults participate in social and recreational activities. We are now exploring how those clients<br />

who participated in our Outreach Program with Paula Frappier can transition to these programs<br />

within the Evergreen Centre so we can expand their networks and help them stay healthy.<br />

Lastly, our Eat Well Program, which grew into an emergency food access program during the<br />

pandemic, was the most challenging program to transition. Originally, it was a weekly Seniors<br />

Community Food Market at six subsidized housing locations across Guelph which increased<br />

food access to 300 vulnerable seniors and was led by Molly Roberts, a Community Dietitian.<br />

Teams of volunteers and community partners worked with the SEED, The City of Guelph, the<br />

Guelph Food Bank, Cobs Bread, Hope House, and others to increase food access to seniors.<br />

Working with the United Way and the Board of Hope House, we believe we now have found a<br />

way to transition the Eat Well Program. Hope House is an organization that is the leading food<br />

security advocate in Guelph who operates on the belief that poverty, food insecurity, inequality,<br />

health, and community are all interconnected. They offer services and programs that challenge<br />

the stigmas surrounding poverty and allow individuals to maintain their dignity and choice, and<br />

we are pleased that they will be delivering better food access in the Guelph Wellington area.<br />

Submitted by Linda Jeffrey, Executive Director<br />

Membership & Marketing Committee<br />

In July <strong>2021</strong>, the Membership & Marketing Committee chair transferred from Interim Chair Ken<br />

Fugler to Wenda King and COVID continued to play havoc with membership participation with<br />

<strong>GWSA</strong>.<br />

During the last six months of <strong>2021</strong>, the M&M Committee continued to meet via Zoom and<br />

partnered with the Program Committee to keep communication open for the members to<br />

participate in their activities as much as Zoom allowed.<br />


At the beginning of September <strong>2021</strong>, the M&M Committee advertised the reopening of the<br />

Evergreen Centre for members and new members. The committee assisted in welcoming existing<br />

members back to the Evergreen Seniors Community Centre during September when new<br />

membership cards were issued and made available for all members to pick up at the Centre.<br />

A New Member Reception was to take place in January <strong>2022</strong> for members who had joined<br />

between September and November, but unfortunately, due to another strain of COVID, the<br />

reception had to be cancelled as the Evergreen Seniors Community Centre doors were closed<br />

again. The New Member Reception was rescheduled for March 30, <strong>2022</strong>. Ann Sneyd provided<br />

wonderful entertainment for the attendees. President Brian Smith welcomed the new members<br />

and activity leaders spoke to the attendees about their programs. Ann Sneyd, member of the<br />

Silvertones/Silver Strummers, promoted the June 10, <strong>2022</strong>, Open House.<br />

The M&M Committee recognized our Evergreen Senior volunteers during International<br />

Volunteer Week in April <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

The Committee members are participating in demonstrations and volunteering for the Open<br />

House on June 10, <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

The Committee will be working towards increasing our membership in the last quarter of <strong>2022</strong><br />

and continue through 2023.<br />

Submitted by Wenda King, Chair<br />

Volunteer Advisory Committee<br />

Becky MacDonald, City of Guelph Recreation Co-ordinator – Volunteers (Chair)<br />

Joan Ksenych<br />

Athar Khan<br />

Lloyd Le Blanc<br />

Kerry Detlor<br />

The Volunteer Advisory Committee meets monthly to review and support the <strong>GWSA</strong> Volunteer<br />

Program. The Committee assists with the reviewing of documents, awards, recognition,<br />

evaluation, and overall discussion that pertain to the volunteer program. In this process, the role<br />

of the City of Guelph Recreation Co-ordinator – Volunteers is to provide support to the <strong>GWSA</strong><br />

with co-ordination of the Volunteer Program.<br />

With <strong>GWSA</strong> activities returning to in-person, all volunteers are now required to complete a<br />

‘return to volunteer’ orientation and training with COVID training to ensure everyone is kept safe<br />

and informed. Gradually, volunteers started to return to new or past positions in September <strong>2021</strong>.<br />

As the year <strong>2022</strong> progresses, we look forward to continuing to connect with all volunteers and<br />

working together in providing the required programs and services. We also strive to build<br />

structured and meaningful volunteer roles that are so important to engage the older adult<br />

population.<br />


Accomplishments<br />

Orientation and Training module for all volunteers offered virtually online for<br />

volunteers to access and complete<br />

42 new volunteers joined the team within Activity Groups, Committees and in the Bistro<br />

683<br />

Position Descriptions reviewed and updated<br />

Goals for <strong>2022</strong>-2023<br />

Recruit new volunteers and increase awareness of the vast number and diversity of<br />

current and new volunteer positions available<br />

Continue to update Policies and Procedures that are related to volunteers<br />

Continue to update the Volunteer Handbooks as a resource for volunteers to utilize<br />

and have a better understanding of their roles and expectations<br />

Reviewing the recognition program for all volunteers<br />

Planning, Nominating and Succession Committee<br />

The Planning, Nominating and Succession Committee was re-established in September <strong>2021</strong>.<br />

The committee met monthly and on as needed basis, to review, plan and discuss strategies in<br />

reaching members and non-members to volunteer with the Board of Directors.<br />

The committee members are:<br />

Ann Grant (Chair)<br />

Ken Fugler (Board Member)<br />

Teresa McKeeman (Board Member)<br />

Becky MacDonald (City of Guelph - Volunteer Co-ordinator)<br />

Recruitment for the vacant positions on the Board was conducted in the following ways:<br />

The Sentinel – one page advertisement and in the Volunteer corner<br />

The <strong>GWSA</strong> website<br />

The <strong>GWSA</strong> membership email list<br />

PIN website for volunteer opportunities<br />

Reaching out to all current volunteer email list<br />

Personal connections through word of mouth<br />

Networking with the community<br />

The Committee interviewed and recommended 4 well-qualified people to become Board<br />

Members who will run for election at the AGM.<br />

Thank you to the committee members who worked so diligently this year.<br />

Ann Grant<br />


Technology Advisory Committee<br />

Members:<br />

Russ Brown Dave Corkell Ross Knechtel<br />

Beth Sheir Jan MacInnes Charlie Bishop<br />

Brian Yasvinshi Gord Webb Ellen Webb<br />

The Technology Advisory Committee was formed at the end of <strong>2021</strong>, in the midst of COVID-19.<br />

The group met virtually for the first time on December 13 th @ 4 pm over Zoom.<br />

As COVID started to wind down early in <strong>2022</strong>, the group met for the first time in the Bistro 683<br />

over lunch. This is where some tasks were more formally engaged.<br />

Since the start of the team, the following items have been addressed, and there are some that<br />

have yet to be accomplished.<br />


1. Purchase & deployment off 12 new 32” 4K resolution monitors<br />

2. Purchase & deployment of 6 – i7-based desktop machines<br />

3. Purchase of wireless projector with mobile cart<br />

4. Purchase of 2 tables to hold the streaming video system<br />

5. Purchase new wireless Colour Laser Printer<br />


6. Debug and repair of Gym Sound System (zero cost)<br />

7. Verification of Sound Board, wireless microphones, and components<br />

8. Investigation of Gym Lights and clear labelling so others can run the lights<br />

9. Investigation of pre-COVID centre spotlight (ONGOING WITH VENDOR)<br />

10. Identification of 6 fault lamps in the Stage lighting (PENDING)<br />

11. Inventory and Operational checks of all Sound/Video interface boxes inside meeting<br />

rooms<br />

12. Purchase of rechargeable batteries & charger for activity groups to use<br />

13. Replacement of Board Room Overhead Projector (PENDING)<br />

14. Addition of Wi-Fi Access points in the gym (APPROVED, PENDING INSTALL)<br />

15. Install of computer/printer in the Library (PENDING)<br />

16. Take Inventory of excess computers/accessories (PENDING)<br />

17. Delivered two, one-hour Zoom-based presentations. First on Cybersecurity and then<br />

on computer basics<br />


The Sentinel<br />

The Sentinel office is a very busy place now that we are BACK! Linda does a great job of putting<br />

together each monthly issue of the Sentinel, which is also posted online each month so that all our<br />

members and advertisers can keep up-to-date with information regarding the goings on at Evergreen.<br />

Printed Sentinels have been available since October, with a pause in January during the last closure at<br />

the Centre.<br />

The Sentinel Team tries to keep all the members included in<br />

one way or another. Remember, if you want your birthday<br />

or anniversary put into the Sentinel, you yourself MUST let<br />

us know by the first of the month PRIOR to the occasion<br />

(i.e., August for September, April for May, etc.). If, by<br />

chance, you ‘forget’ and still want your celebration inserted<br />

in, we can do that in the following month’s edition. Also,<br />

we aren’t familiar with all of the <strong>GWSA</strong> members, so, if<br />

you hear or know of a member’s passing, please let us<br />

know at the Sentinel so we can include their information<br />

in the Passages.<br />

Our email<br />

address is<br />

always near the<br />

front of each<br />

issue, but here it<br />

is in case you<br />

don’t have a<br />

copy handy (sentinel@gwsa-guelph.ca).<br />

We apologize to any members who do not have a<br />

computer but hope that a friend or relative will share<br />

viewing their Sentinel with you. We work from our<br />

homes as well as from our office to keep all our members<br />

informed of what has been going on in and around the<br />

City and our Evergreen Centre.<br />

The Sentinel Team doesn’t take the summer off as many<br />

members presume. Last year, the AGM was held online<br />

via Zoom on June 8 at 1:30 pm. We prepare the documents for the <strong>Annual</strong> <strong>Report</strong> for the <strong>Annual</strong><br />

General Meeting (AGM) which is to be held this year on June 21. We wish everyone to stay safe<br />

and healthy during these trying times.<br />

Submitted by Carol Croft and Linda Green.<br />


The Web Team<br />

Members: Ross Knechtel (<strong>GWSA</strong> webmaster), Sue Wi-Afedzi (<strong>GWSA</strong> Email Updates), Brian<br />

Smith (<strong>GWSA</strong> website)<br />

The <strong>GWSA</strong> Web Team volunteers provide support for the <strong>GWSA</strong> website, the <strong>GWSA</strong> Email<br />

Updates and the <strong>GWSA</strong>’s social media accounts, with oversight from the Membership and<br />

Marketing Committee.<br />

The <strong>GWSA</strong> website started in 2008 and outlines the programs and services offered by the<br />

<strong>GWSA</strong>, and the City of Guelph programs for older adults. The website has been redesigned<br />

using the Elegant Themes-Divi module using WordPress, with increased speed, simplified<br />

menus, and improved readability, and the hosting has been moved to Cloudflare. We include<br />

‘blog posts’ for the latest news, ‘blurbs’ for static information, and ‘read-only’ windows to some<br />

of our files to provide transparency on meetings and documents relevant to members. Links are<br />

offered to social media, The Sentinel Newsletter, and even the latest menus from Bistro 683.<br />

We monitor website usage for anonymous data including number of site visitors, popular pages<br />

and site performance, and use SSL, bot blockers, and security features to protect the site from<br />

hacking attempts, most of which arrive from overseas.<br />

The team welcomes feedback. We encourage Activity Group Leaders to keep things current.<br />

Members can join Activity Groups, apply to start groups, and log their volunteer hours through<br />

the website. This year, we added a live Google Activity Calendar, maintained by the Program<br />

Committee. With library automation underway, members will be able to explore the Book Nook<br />

collection, which we expect will lead to increased visits to that impressive space.<br />

Be sure to check our website often at https://gwsa-guelph.ca to get the latest information.<br />

The <strong>GWSA</strong> Email Updates are powered by Mail Chimp, sending email blasts to anyone who<br />

subscribes. Normally these are distributed between issues of The Sentinel newsletter, but also<br />

when there are timely messages as have occurred during the pandemic and our re-opening<br />

changes. As a result, there were over 20 updates over the past year. As these email blasts reach<br />

only about half our members, be sure to sign up through the website, and check that we have<br />

your current email information when you renew your membership.<br />

The <strong>GWSA</strong> social media accounts include Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. These platforms are<br />

used to notify followers about important news, programs and events as well as the availability of<br />

new issues of The Sentinel. These social media links are accessible from the footer of our<br />

website.<br />

We can sometimes use extra help for this diverse team, and we hope to make more extensive use<br />

of social media. If you have strong communication and moderate computer skills, please contact<br />

the volunteer co-ordinator, Becky MacDonald at becky.macdonald@guelph.ca for more<br />

information.<br />



Badminton<br />

The Badminton Club, like all groups, very much missed our time at the Evergreen and West End<br />

Centre this past year. The inability to gather, to exercise, and to socialize forced us to appreciate<br />

what we previously may have taken for granted. We are very lucky to have access to these two<br />

facilities.<br />

The Badminton Club Leadership Team had just gone through its own internal shock wave<br />

when the COVID-19 shock wave started to sink in. The new Leadership team quickly learned<br />

(stumbled) to use something called Zoom and identified 17 items of priority to focus upon.<br />

To date, 10 items are completed or are likely to always be on-going works in progress. Some<br />

of the notable topics are as follows:<br />

The consolidation and compression of numerous governance documents that we<br />

inherited. One of the more significant improvements was email voting. This will allow<br />

for change or amendments at any time of the year without waiting for the AGM, making<br />

it really an information session.<br />

Placing all key documents into the hands of members in a move to become totally<br />

transparent.<br />

We brought back coaching clinics holding two 4-part clinics for large groups, Quick-start<br />

sessions for beginners, and small group lessons on request for all members.<br />

We brought back our first tournaments since 2018 and held 3 for various skill levels.<br />

We upgraded some of our badminton nets and improved our supply of birds.<br />

We continued to “Pay it Forward” by donating 12 gently used rackets from retired<br />

players to the Students at St. John’s Catholic School.<br />

We restarted our Outreach Coaching efforts again where numerous club members share<br />

their expertise with aspiring young Badminton players in both primary and secondary<br />

Guelph schools.<br />

We are slowly trying to document our club’s long history.<br />

We continue to struggle with a membership cap. While we would love to let everyone<br />

join to rekindle their love of the sport or new folks discover the joy of Badminton, we are<br />

trying to weigh quality of play with overcrowding in our small 3-court gyms.<br />

The <strong>GWSA</strong> Badminton Club now participates with numerous other sports organizations<br />

in the City to bring about awareness for the lack of indoor court space with proper<br />

wooden (sprung) gymnasium type floors surfaces.<br />

During lockdowns, our members organized hikes along the Escarpment, numerous bike hikes on<br />

City and area trails, and we even organized Sunday night pickleball games during last summer at<br />

Margaret Green Park.<br />

As we look to our future, we do, however, have one very serious problem. Not enough<br />

members step up to make things happen. This includes ideas & suggestions, the running of<br />

coaching clinics and tournaments, etc., as well as succession planning for our leadership team.<br />


Regardless of this, our Leadership Team feels we have turned our club around and our<br />

members always show up with smiles on their faces.<br />

Please poke your head into the gym and see for yourself. If you like what you see, we invite<br />

you to get your name onto our waiting list.<br />

See you on the court.<br />

Submitted by Jeff Millard<br />

Book Club 1<br />

The <strong>GWSA</strong> Book Club 1 meets on the last Friday of every month from 1:00 pm to 2:30 pm in<br />

the Board room at the Evergreen Centre. Last year at this time, we had 20 members in the club.<br />

When the pandemic arrived in the spring of 2020, the lockdown began and the book club was<br />

unable to continue because the Guelph Public Library was completely shut down and we get our<br />

books primarily from the library. When the library began curbside pickup, we continued reading<br />

the selected books and used emails for the members to discuss and distribute their reviews about<br />

the book we were reading.<br />

In January <strong>2021</strong>, we began a new list of selected books, and this time, we met on Zoom for our<br />

monthly meetings. Emails were still used by people who didn’t have Zoom. Our numbers have<br />

decreased by two who have left the club, two more are on hiatus, and we have 8 active members<br />

who continue to stay in touch with emails and/or Zoom.<br />

With the weather improving, we plan to meet outdoors in the future for our monthly meetings.<br />

Submitted by Veronica Sanche.<br />

Book Nook<br />

Our team of volunteers:<br />

Chris Fraser, Librarian<br />

Jane Pyper Barb McLean Louisa Santin<br />

Sue Gamble Janet Ashbee Sue La Chapelle<br />

Joan Ksenych Brenda Walton Sandi Wilkes<br />

Donna Houghton Beth Madole<br />

We thank all the above volunteers for their continued and faithful service in continuing to keep<br />

our library running in an efficient manner and keeping it neat and tidy for our members to enjoy.<br />

Some of our volunteers did not return after Evergreen re-opened and we now have a few new<br />

volunteers. When the Evergreen re-opened again in <strong>2021</strong>, we made sure the Book Nook was kept<br />

sanitized and safe for members to come into. Due to COVID-19 precautions, the jigsaw puzzles<br />

were removed as well as magazines, all books being returned were quarantined before being put<br />

back onto the shelf.<br />


In September <strong>2021</strong>, we purchased new books for the library for members to enjoy reading.<br />

Every month, Chris reads one of the “new” books and submits a report to the Sentinel,<br />

recommending it, and to encourage members to sign out that book to enjoy reading.<br />

Due to COVID-19, we were not able to hold any book sales during this time but are planning to<br />

have another one very soon.<br />

The Book Nook is a relaxing place to come into to browse our great selection of books and<br />

DVDs or to sit and read a magazine, and we look forward to seeing members return as well as<br />

new members come in to sign out books.<br />

Submitted by Chris Fraser, Librarian<br />

Bunka<br />

Bunka is a type of Japanese embroidery which results in beautiful pictures similar to paintings.<br />

The Bunka group did not meet in <strong>2021</strong> until the <strong>GWSA</strong> was reopened as members preferred to<br />

wait and meet again in person rather than over Zoom. When we finally were able to meet, we<br />

practiced social distancing and wore masks and abided by the rules of the Centre.<br />

We have a dedicated group who meet every Wednesday morning during the year to work on<br />

their pictures, and it has also become a social time to enjoy seeing what everyone is working on.<br />

The light is much better at the Centre than in our homes so most work on Bunka only at the<br />

<strong>GWSA</strong>.<br />

We do not have a teacher and members are required to purchase their own supplies. At the<br />

present time, prospective new members will be put on a waiting list but should have some<br />

experience in the craft.<br />

Our group is currently self sufficient and does not require funding for our needs from the <strong>GWSA</strong><br />

program budget.<br />

Diane Barber<br />

Bunka Co-ordinator<br />

Canoe Club<br />

After a two-year hiatus, the Canoe Club is back on the water. We lost many members over the<br />

COVID break, but we have rebounded with membership numbers back to our capacity level.<br />

With our spring training completed in April, we were able to get back on the river in early May.<br />

Last week, we picked up our new canoe and were able to sell one of the older canoes. We are<br />

back to enjoying the paddling and, as always, excited to see what wildlife awaits around the next<br />

bend.<br />

John Ness, President<br />

Evergreen Canoe Club<br />


Casual Bicycling<br />

The Casual Bicycling Club has returned with more interest than ever. Our membership has risen<br />

to 35 members. We got the bikes dusted off and began riding the first week of May. Some of the<br />

members are new to the Guelph area and are really excited to try all the trails. We are looking<br />

forward to an excellent season riding the trails in and around Wellington County.<br />

John Ness<br />

Representative for Casual Bicycling.<br />

Craft Club<br />

The Craft Club re-opened on Oct. 1 st of last year and it was nice to see everyone again. The<br />

ladies worked hard during the shutdown and showed up with many articles for the store.<br />

Right away, we started to make scarfs, hats, mitts, and toques to donate to local charities, for the<br />

needy.<br />

I am pleased to say the ladies came through again and we donated many articles to be given<br />

out at Christmas. We are all looking forward to the rest of the year, especially being together<br />

again and making lots of new articles to see in the store.<br />

Submitted by Judy Montgomery<br />

Into Focus Photography Club<br />

Like all the Activity Groups, the IFPC cancelled all in-person meetings and photography field<br />

trips due to the coronavirus pandemic. This certainly put a damper on the social interactions<br />

enjoyed by the members but it did not stop each individual from continuing on with their hobby.<br />

Thanks to the success and popularity of meeting virtually via Zoom, we have been able to<br />

maintain a regular schedule of two sessions per month. The mid-month Chit-Chat gatherings<br />

have been popular and well attended, as have been the month-end formal meetings consisting of<br />

photo-sharing via our regular Theme-of-The-Month, Monthly Challenge, and educational<br />

presentations. Uploads of photos to our SmugMug website have continued despite COVID-<br />

19. Our Flickr and Facebook group pages have also enjoyed steady participation.<br />

We really miss our monthly field trips as an organized group, however, most of us manage to<br />

get outdoors and chase those Kodak moments on an individual basis.<br />

On a sad note, over the past year, we have lost two of our prominent members due to non-<br />

COVID-related health issues. Jean McClelland and Alan Pickersgill, sorely missed by us all,<br />

will live on in our memories.<br />

Submitted by Stu McCannell<br />


Line Dancing<br />

2020/21 was a challenge for <strong>GWSA</strong> Line Dancing. To the line dancers who kept coming each<br />

week and supported us as we worked through learning the new sound system and music format,<br />

thank you. Our sincere thanks go to our instructors – Margaret Green, Kathy Kemp, Jill Kropf,<br />

Eleanore Klein, Betty Chu, Patty Liberatore, Carol Lightfoot and Janet Trimble. These ladies<br />

have continued to instruct each other and dance each week via their phones so they were ready to<br />

go once the Evergreen Centre opened. We sent out three emails to our membership. Included in<br />

each was a list of URLs that directed the line dancers to written instructions as well as the music<br />

and demos for several line dances. We trust that everyone is dancing at home at least once a<br />

week and looking forward to when we can line dance together.<br />

Submitted by Phyllis Carnochan and Donna Holmes, Co-Chair<br />

Quilting Group<br />

Due to the pandemic and closures in <strong>2021</strong>, our weekly meetings (Mondays 12:30-4:00 pm) of the<br />

Quilting ladies managed to sew and produce hundreds of face masks of different styles and<br />

colours. This epic contribution, and dedication, raised $3400 for <strong>GWSA</strong>. Much effort through<br />

this time of isolation, also, resulted in several baby blankets, micro-bowls and other saleable<br />

items for when the Centre opened again, and were visible in the Boutique. As most of our<br />

creative efforts are worked on at home, we are still able to spend lots of time sorting fabrics,<br />

which are donated, and learning from each other to produce the items that we sell. Now, with<br />

Seriously? Seniors? on June 10, we are fully occupied with our presentations to further our<br />

contributions to <strong>GWSA</strong>.<br />

Submitted by Beryl Drohan<br />

Rug Hooking<br />

Rug Hooking is a new activity group at the Evergreen Centre. Since our first gathering on<br />

February 22, <strong>2022</strong>, there has been a lot of interest in this traditional craft. We have helped some<br />

new rug hookers get started on their first project as well as those who have dug out unfinished<br />

pieces from years ago and are now completing them. Rug hooking is a very enjoyable and social<br />

activity. We have received a warm welcome at the Evergreen Centre and are enjoying our large,<br />

bright meeting space.<br />

We meet on Tuesday from 12-4 in Room 2. New participants are welcome.<br />

Contact: Kathy McCallum, Phone: 226-821-1331, Email: kamccallum@gmail.com<br />

Shuffleboard<br />

We started back on Feb. 1 with 8-10 people playing – we had decided on our COVID<br />

precautions, like always wearing masks, sitting a distance apart, and cleaning down our sticks<br />

with disinfectant before we started to play. We have gradually grown to 26-27 players, with<br />


many of those players brand new. Many of our pre-pandemic members have not returned! We<br />

have had people with disabilities come out with a caregiver and have two regulars now who are<br />

super keen! So far, Tuesday is the preferred day, but some are coming both days. I think our<br />

group is very social and we have many laughs!!<br />

Submitted by Elaine Bigam<br />

Silver Strummers<br />

The Silver Strummers are the <strong>GWSA</strong>’s Ukulele Orchestra Activity Group. We were formed in<br />

January of 2020 as a pilot project to see if there would be an interest from <strong>GWSA</strong> members.<br />

Unfortunately, as of March 2020, our in-person meetings came to an abrupt halt. Not to be<br />

deterred, we continued meeting using the Zoom platform for more than 18 months. During that<br />

time, the membership grew from 22 people to well over 30 currently. We are hoping to reach a<br />

membership of 50 in the near future as people return to live activities.<br />

Our instructor is Carolyn McCleod McCarthy, an active teacher and performer in the Guelph<br />

area. We meet on Friday afternoons from 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm in Rm 3 at the Evergreen Centre.<br />

The Silver Strummers own more than a dozen instruments, music stands, and music binders for<br />

use by our members who do not own or choose to rent their instruments. We play a very diverse<br />

repertoire, covering many musical genres.<br />

Our inaugural public concert occurs in conjunction with the Silvertones Choir’s 42nd<br />

anniversary concert on June 10, <strong>2022</strong>, at the “Seriously? Seniors?” showcase event.<br />

You do not need previous musical training to join the Silver Strummers. It is helpful, but not<br />

necessary, if you like to sing, as we usually sing along with our strumming. If you have always<br />

wanted to play an instrument, ukulele is accessible and doable for most seniors. We invite<br />

prospective members to come out for three “free trial” rehearsals, to see if playing ukulele is<br />

something you would enjoy.<br />

Respectfully Submitted<br />

Ann Sneyd<br />

Activity Group Leader<br />

Silvertones Choir<br />


Doreen Muir, Arlene McEllistrum, Elaine Gowing, Thelma Smeltzer, Patti DuGuid, Marion<br />

Cassolato, Betty Wilson McGhee, Marion Grayson, Penny Richards, Darlene Pembleton<br />

DIRECTOR: Ann Sneyd ACCOMPANIST: Andrea LeBlanc<br />

We all remember Friday, March 13, 2020, as though it were yesterday! The Silvertones Choir<br />

was practicing in Room 3 when the announcement was made that the <strong>GWSA</strong> facility would be<br />

closing until further notice!<br />


Over the past two years, our choir continued to practice via Zoom with Ann Sneyd as Director<br />

AND Accompanist with the muted choir members singing individually from their homes.<br />

Amazingly, Ann knew, though she could not hear us, where we were a bit weak. We all looked<br />

forward to our practices and to our Director's informative weekly emails, which would<br />

include personal anecdotes. Ann also provided the choir with her own practice videos through<br />

email. Zoom was not ideal, not like practicing in person in Room 3, but it was a good way to<br />

stay in touch and keep our voices honed. The majority of our choir took to the Zoom format, and<br />

everyone looked forward to being part of this interaction. These electronic practices went a long<br />

way in preparing the choir for getting back to "in person" practices and readying the Silvertones<br />

for their first performance Post-COVID at the <strong>GWSA</strong> Open House and 42nd birthday for the<br />

Silvertones held June 10th, <strong>2022</strong> (we trust this event will be a success for both <strong>GWSA</strong> and the<br />

Silvertones and all of our wonderful volunteers)!<br />

We were challenged this year in welcoming two new prospective singers with special<br />

needs. These individuals have been attending our practices regularly with a care giver. We<br />

know that the participants are enjoying these weekly practices and hope to continue to be part of<br />

our choir when we return in the Fall of this year! Our membership continues to grow, and we<br />

welcome our new accompanist, Andrea LeBlanc.<br />

We do not know what the future holds but the Silvertones are back on track and looking forward<br />

to many more years of Entertaining in our Community<br />

Submitted by Doreen Muir<br />

President<br />

Table Tennis Club<br />

For the second year in a row, we were partially shut down due to COVID-19. Our club<br />

activities, playing Table Tennis (Ping Pong to some), resumed on September 22, <strong>2021</strong>, after the<br />

COVID shutdown. The shutdown extended from March 13, 2020, so over 16 months!<br />

The <strong>GWSA</strong> required everyone to sign COVID Waivers, acknowledging the risks one would be<br />

taking, and agreeing to follow the new protocols and requirements.<br />

The City of Guelph implemented some COVID protocols such as checking proof of vaccination<br />

and ID when entering the Recreation Centres. Once the COVID passport was introduced and<br />

mandated, that was the only way to prove being fully vaccinated. There was also additional<br />

cleaning, and the setup of some spaces in the centre was modified.<br />

Table Tennis restarted playing with our own COVID protocols in place, which focused on social<br />

distancing, wearing of masks, and good hand washing hygiene. We spaced out the chairs in the<br />

Gym into a 6-foot grid, and took off masks only while playing. The table surfaces were<br />

disinfected regularly, and everyone was asked to only use their own table tennis racket. Another<br />

big change was the introduction of much lower room capacity limits, where not all of our<br />

members could be in the Gym at the same time. We planned to have everyone split into two<br />

somewhat equal groups, which would attend either the first or second half of our session. But<br />


ecause the initial turnouts were much lower than pre-COVID, we did not need to implement the<br />

cohorting, but had to keep an eye on the numbers during our busier sessions. Once into <strong>2022</strong>,<br />

some of the restrictions were lifted.<br />

Those that came back to play were happy to do so, having missed the activity and interaction for<br />

so long. We stopped using Room 4 on days when the Gym was not available due to the much<br />

tighter confines where physical distancing would not be possible while waiting for a turn to play,<br />

with only three tables fitting into the room.<br />

Typically, we would have groups of four people playing a match (best of 3 games), and then<br />

checking if there was anyone waiting to play, to give them a chance to play. If many people<br />

were not waiting to play, then some would prefer to play singles and had a chance to do so. Our<br />

playing times were adjusted somewhat to accommodate the very popular Pickle Ball activity.<br />

We played on Monday late afternoon (3:00 to 6:15 pm), Wednesday morning (10:00 to 1:00 pm)<br />

and Saturday mornings (9:00 to 12:00 noon). In addition, we would play on Friday afternoons<br />

(1:00 to 4:00 pm) at the West End Recreation Centre in a Gym there. Our membership is down<br />

somewhat from the pre-pandemic levels, with 53 current members. Our attendance is also down,<br />

so we often end up with unused tables.<br />

If you enjoy an active lifestyle, we have players at all levels, from beginners to quite proficient.<br />

There is also plenty of room. We would welcome you to join us!<br />

Submitted by Petr Vales.<br />

Travel Committee<br />

Joanne White (chair), Joan Bruder, Yvonne Thomas, Jessie Watt<br />

During the 1½-year COVID shutdown, the Travel Committee met over Zoom, coming up with<br />

some great trip ideas. We had hoped that we would be able to get our seniors out on some day<br />

trips away. In anticipation of the Centre re-opening, we planned a safe out-of-doors trip to<br />

Gravenhurst in September of <strong>2021</strong>. This trip was thoroughly enjoyed by all! Then when the<br />

Centre re-opened, the Travel Committee was ready to make sure our seniors would have other<br />

trips to get out and tour again.<br />

In December, we arranged an outing to Niagara Falls - dining at the Skylon Tower, attending the<br />

Greg Frewin magic show, and viewing the Winter Festival of Lights!<br />

In January of <strong>2022</strong>, the Centre was shut down once again. We had planned a trip to Medieval<br />

Times but, with the Centre closed and RecEnroll not available, the trip had no interest. We may<br />

schedule this trip again in November <strong>2022</strong> - keep checking the Sentinel and the <strong>GWSA</strong> website<br />

for upcoming trips.<br />

I would like to thank Terry Keleher and Mumtaz Kassam, who had been on the committee prior<br />

to COVID and had planned and took our seniors on some excellent trips; they decided to take on<br />

more volunteering elsewhere and so they left us in November. Also, a big thank you to Wendi<br />


Hake for all her help with the financial side of our committee - certainly made things a lot easier<br />

for us. And a thank you to our president Brian for advertising our trips on the website as well as<br />

thanks to Carol and Linda of the Sentinel for the excellent way you advertise our trips each<br />

month.<br />

Travel, even though we only planned 2 successful trips for Apr <strong>2021</strong> to Mar <strong>2022</strong>, we are still<br />

very proud of how they went and our seniors certainly seemed to enjoy them.<br />

Even though there were few outings, we certainly have planned a lot of trips for the future . This<br />

is evident as we have booked 9 trips already for the April <strong>2022</strong> to March 2023 season and this<br />

only takes us through October.<br />

I would like to thank Joan, Yvonne and Jessie for all their hard work in planning the trips to date.<br />

Also Thank You to our seniors for coming on our trips, your participation makes <strong>GWSA</strong> trips<br />

possible.<br />

Submitted by Joanne White<br />

Watercolours Group<br />

We have been “keeping our brushes wet”, painting and sharing our results with each other. On<br />

Zoom, we have continued our 1 pm meetings on the alternate Wednesdays of our normal inperson<br />

day. We are grateful to the <strong>GWSA</strong> for providing this service! As the Evergreen Centre<br />

opened up again, some members have felt able to return in person to Room 2 as well. We choose<br />

optional subjects to paint: snow, hearth and home, animals, perspective, reflections, 4 elements,<br />

self-portrait, water, mist, botanical, etc., and enjoy seeing the varied approaches to each. For<br />

Christmas, we created a calendar featuring representative paintings by our members, and had<br />

copies printed for each person in the club.<br />

Mary Mulholland<br />

Woodcarving<br />

The Guelph Carving Club has been operating independently since 1987. The latest meeting<br />

place we had for about ten years, was a room at the Marden Library complex. When COVID-19<br />

hit, this venue was closed to us.<br />

When we saw the Evergreen Centre, and as a result, <strong>GWSA</strong>, open in the Fall of <strong>2021</strong>, our<br />

Club decided to join <strong>GWSA</strong> as an activity. As a result, we have been operating as an Activity<br />

under <strong>GWSA</strong> since September <strong>2021</strong>.<br />

We are a Wood Carving/Craft Club that Carves items in the Round, in Pyrography (wood<br />

shading, or ‘burning’) and Marquetry (inlaid small thin pieces of veneer). We can loan you tools<br />

and some materials to get you started and will train and assist you all the way.<br />

We see better times ahead with some local Wood Shows opening up and interest in general<br />

growing.<br />

Submitted by Ken Fugler – President<br />


City of Guelph Senior Services <strong>Report</strong><br />

Hello Guelph Wellington Seniors Association members, friends, and supporters.<br />

Our doors are open! A year ago, I wrote my thoughts about year one in a pandemic, the things<br />

we missed, and the silver linings along the way. This year, I write to you with a welcome back to<br />

the Evergreen Seniors Community Centre and a thank you for persevering along with the <strong>GWSA</strong><br />

and the City of Guelph teams. It’s been wonderful to see the Evergreen back in action and to see<br />

the faces, hear the voices, and feel the energy of our members and guests.<br />

Like the year before, we have relied on the tireless work of the <strong>GWSA</strong> and City teams to<br />

navigate an endless series of regulations, protocols, and procedures. While some of these actions<br />

are now part of our day-to-day lives and other tasks seem like distant memories, it’s important to<br />

acknowledge that we persevered, and we made it through. I thank everyone that stepped up to<br />

support our return to regular activities. I’d especially like to thank the <strong>GWSA</strong>’s Executive Team<br />

for all their efforts. They have tackled a very challenging year with tireless dedication, a<br />

thoughtful approach, and a steadfast desire to support and improve the <strong>GWSA</strong>.<br />

As in previous years, City staff continue to make both subtle and significant improvements to<br />

the Evergreen. Most obvious is our revamped front desk and dining room counter set-ups. Both<br />

look great and help maintain the updated health and safety expectations. You’ll also notice that<br />

we’ve re-named our dining room “Bistro 683” and added some wonderful graphics from<br />

designer Ellyn Lusis to liven up the facility. And finally, I’m happy to report that we will be<br />

extending dining room hours of operation until 4pm beginning in the Fall.<br />

We’ve also revamped our Snooker Room and replaced the worn-out felt and pockets on our<br />

tables, replaced the lighting with energy efficient alternatives, and have added a few creature<br />

comforts to make the space more enjoyable.<br />

Less obvious, but equally important improvements around the Evergreen include a<br />

replacement of our hot water systems, repairs to the Auditorium floor, replacement of<br />

Auditorium lights, and a facility-wide enhancement of our Wi-Fi system to allow for better<br />

access and speed. These improvements will make day-to-day use of the Evergreen more<br />

enjoyable for all guests.<br />

Finally, I’d like to acknowledge and say thank you to our Evergreen and <strong>GWSA</strong> Staff that<br />

have moved on to new adventures and opportunities; this includes Tonie MacInnis (now acting-<br />

Supervisor of Programs for Recreation) and Sheri-Lyn Roy who has moved into a permanent<br />

role with the City of Guelph. I want to extend a special thank you to the <strong>GWSA</strong> Community<br />

Support Services team. I have so much appreciation and gratitude for all the work you’ve done<br />

and differences you’ve made in the lives of older adults in our community. I had the privilege of<br />

working with this team throughout the pandemic and cannot say enough about their efforts to<br />

support those in need in times of greatest need. Thank you so much.<br />

The weather is getting warmer, the sun is shining longer, the Evergreen doors are open, and<br />

my door is always open for you!<br />

I’m looking forward to connecting with familiar faces and welcoming new ones over the next<br />

year.<br />

With gratitude,<br />

Adam.<br />

Adam Rutherford – Program Manager Evergreen Seniors Centre<br />


Thanks to Our Contributors<br />

For the 12 Months Ending March 31, <strong>2022</strong><br />

For the 12 months ending March 31, <strong>2022</strong>, <strong>GWSA</strong> Activity Groups had a net<br />

remittance of $22,670.<br />

And there were Individual Donations to the <strong>GWSA</strong> of $3,450.<br />

We extend the utmost gratitude to all for their generous donations, which enable<br />

us to continue offering our many Programs and Activities.<br />

Thanks for generous support for these programs from:<br />

The City of Guelph, the United Way, Guelph Wellington Dufferin, Guelph Community<br />

Foundation, The Guelph Family Health Team, Emergency Community Support Fund, Guelph<br />

Rotary Trillium, Compass, Older Adult Centres Association of Ontario, The SEED, The Guelph<br />

Food Bank, and Hope House.<br />

Also, a special thanks to new partnerships who generously<br />

supported the Emergency Food Program:<br />

The City of Guelph Evergreen Kitchen, Diabetes Care Guelph, and The County of Wellington<br />

Housing Services, Church of the Apostles, Bulk Barn, Linamar, COBS Bread, Foresters’<br />

Insurance, COSTCO, Queens Café, The Stocking Lady, With The Grain, West End Bakery,<br />

VON Senior Support Services, Guelph Independent Living, <strong>GWSA</strong> Quilt Group, <strong>GWSA</strong> Craft<br />

Group, and the many CSS volunteers for their dedication to our Community Support Services<br />

community.<br />

We extend special thanks to all the volunteers for our CSS<br />

programs, including:<br />

<br />

<br />

<br />

Seniors’ Pandemic Emergency Food Delivery program volunteers<br />

SOS members<br />

All CSS volunteers who make our CSS community great<br />



Hooray! Your file is uploaded and ready to be published.

Saved successfully!

Ooh no, something went wrong!