Friends, Faith, and Familiarity: Why Aging in Place Is so Important

Friends, Faith, and Familiarity: Why Aging in Place Is so Important

Aging in place is the term used to describe seniors living and receiving assistance in the homes of their own choosing. Everyone has their own reasons for wanting to age in place, but there are three factors that are common across many people who express this desire. It often comes down to friends, faith, and familiarity. All of these three things have to do with an older adult’s rootedness in their neighbourhood. Their social networks are often deeply engaged in place, revolving around lifelong neighbours, local religious organizations, and familiar services like doctors and grocers.

Friends

One of the biggest concerns regarding the process of aging in place is that elders can become isolated in changing neighbourhoods. Close friends and neighbours often belong to similar generations, and over the years, members pass and move away. One of the fears that some experts express is that this process can leave elders remaining in a community isolated, especially as a different demographic moves into an area. However, because this is only one part of the social triangle that makes an area so important, many seniors are undeterred by gentrification. Home care assistance is one way that families can be sure that their aging loved one is getting a certain level of companionship. Sometimes, a caretaker’s job is as much to provide company and mental stimulation as healthcare.

Faith

Faith-based institutions like churches, temples, and synagogues are another important factor in the decision to stay. Although it is undergoing significant commercial and residential changes, Toronto’s Palmerston and Trinity-Bellwoods neighbourhoods remain rich with churches and temples of dozens of faiths and denominations, offering masses in many languages. Church can form an integral part of a senior’s social and spiritual life, and often they desire to remain in the same parish or congregation.

Familiarity

Home healthcare providers like Toronto’s Mavencare recognize the importance of familiarity in a senior’s life. They match their personal support workers with their clients’ needs, including language. Personal support workers come from diverse backgrounds and caretakers fluent in Polish, Chinese, Italian, and Spanish can all be found for elders who prefer to communicate in their mother tongue.

For older adults, especially those who immigrated to Canada, access to institutions like church services, healthcare, and commercial needs are enough reason to stay rooted in their communities. Despite changes, Toronto neighbourhoods still offer an abundance of general practitioners, pharmacists, and legal advisors who can speak to older residents of the community. Part of the job of a Mavencare caretaker is providing transportation assistance, whether it’s to make an appointment, pick up medications, or go grocery shopping. They help keep seniors active participants in the communities where they feel at home. If you want to give your elderly parent the gift of familiarity, visit Mavencare.com/toronto and ask more about aging in place. Give your mother or father the best care they can receive and call for a free assessment today.

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