Seniors helping seniors

Seniors helping seniors is the foundation of Senior Peer Counselling in BC.  Peer counselling is based on the principles of self-help and mutual aid.
The purpose of the Society is to address the health of aged persons by providing for senior peer counselling services and further thereof the Society:

(a) establishes contact and networks with senior peer counselling programs and similar groups in BC to provide a provincial focal point and voice for senior peer counsilling in the province

(b) gathers, organzises and exchanges information on:
– training and education
– evaluation methods
– fundraising and funding
– board structure and operation
– promotion and publicity

(c) liaises with all levels of government and provincial and national organizations involved with seniors groups

(d) promotes the concept of senior peer counselling in BC and assists in increasing community awareness at the local level, and provides consultation to established and emerging senior peer counselling groups

(e) develops guidelines for senior peer counselling services in BC

(f) promotes workshops to assist the ongoing education and training of senior peer counsellors


The Primary Care Network Indigenous Engagement and Cultural Safety Guidebook

FNHA’s Policy Statement on Cultural Safety and Humility
This policy statement provides the FNHA’s view on creating cultural safety and humility for First Nations in the health care system. It builds a common understanding of cultural safety and humility for FNHA, communicates our views with our health partners and provides recommended actions to embed cultural safety into the health system across multiple levels.


Tlesla II Dr. Evan Adams
Chief Medical O cer, First Nations Health Authority

To provide culturally “safe” care, or care where those we serve feel safe and respected, we need to be humble enough to admit that we don’t know everything about everyone’s life experiences, culture and feelings, and that health care providers don’t know it all.

In other words, we need to listen without judgement, and be open to learning from and connecting with individuals, families and communities for better care. One story I would like to share took place while I was prescribing a rather complicated course of treatment for a patient who happened to be an Indigenous man.

Intending to be helpful, I said, “This is quite complicated, would you like me to write it down for you?” To my surprise, he replied in a hurt voice, “Do you think I’m stupid? All I’ve ever heard is that I’m stupid. I was told that every day in residential school and I don’t want to keep hearing it now.”

He needed cultural knowledge from his health care professional, an awareness of history and the adverse impacts, awareness that he had experienced trauma and could be triggered by any seemingly disrespectful behaviour on the part of his health care professional.

Thankfully, I am aware of the history of residential school – my parents both went – and was able, I think, to defuse his feelings of being put down with some careful words and an explanation of my motive to help him be well. This experience taught me how personal experiences can negativelya ect health care interactions, and that as a health care professional weall need to be careful and responsive with our words.

Cultural humility and cultural safety in the health system requires health professionals to acknowledge they are always on a journey of learning, and being open to listening to what better care means for First Nations and Aboriginal peoples. We all need to acknowledge, “it starts with me”.