Se­niors’ fair still grow­ing

The Packet (Clarenville) - - SPORTS -

The Se­niors’ Age-Friendly In­for­ma­tion Fair hosted by the Ran­dom Age-Friendly Com­mu­ni­ties board is grow­ing each year.

On Oct. 19, the fifth an­nual Se­niors’ In­for­ma­tion Fair gave 41 busi­nesses and or­ga­ni­za­tions – four new and 37 from pre­vi­ous years – an op­por­tu­nity to tell se­niors and their fam­ily mem­bers about the prod­ucts or ser­vices they of­fer and to show­case their abil­ity to meet the needs of a grow­ing mar­ket of older adults.

The fair has in­creased from 25 ex­hibitors in 2013 to 41in 2017. Or­ga­niz­ers are pleased that Clarenville Mid­dle School can ac­com­mo­date such large num­bers of ex­hibitors.

Leo Bon­nell, vice-chair of Ran­dom Age-Friendly Com­mu­ni­ties, em­ceed the event while Deputy Mayor He­ber Smith brought greet­ings on be­half of the Town of Clarenville. Smith in­di­cated how proud the town is to host such a worth­while and es­sen­tial event.

Joanne Free­man, con­stituency as­sis­tant for Terra Nova MHA Colin Hol­loway, brought greet­ings on his be­half and echoed Smith’s com­ments about how valu­able and mean­ing­ful such events are to our se­niors.

Sam Saun­ders spoke on be­half of the NL 50+ Fed­er­a­tion, an um­brella or­ga­ni­za­tion that rep­re­sents over 132 clubs and groups in the prov­ince. The fed­er­a­tion is de­voted to the wel­fare and best in­ter­ests of the se­niors of New­found­land and Labrador.

Ap­prox­i­mately 225 peo­ple from the Clarenville re­gion at­tended the fair.

All se­niors re­ceived a tote in­clud­ing valu­able in­for­ma­tion on prod­ucts and ser­vices such as med­i­cal alarms, care givers, pre­scrip­tion drugs, home care ser­vices, and more.

Two se­niors’ groups—Twin Towns 50+ and GATHER – pro­vided in­for­ma­tion on their safe so­cial set­tings, where peo­ple can meet friends new and old. They ex­tended an in­vi­ta­tion for new mem­bers to join.

A book and puz­zle ex­change was held again this year. Peo­ple were en­cour­aged to bring books and/or puz­zles for ex­change.

Two in­for­ma­tion ses­sions held through­out the day were a sig­nif­i­cant part of the event. Mary Hynes of New­found­land Funeral So­lu­tions gave a pre­sen­ta­tion on pre-ar­rang­ing and pre-fund­ing funer­als, and Tony Rose of Fire Emer­gency Ser­vices NL pre­sented on fire preven­tion and emer­gency pre­pared­ness.

Both pre­sen­ta­tions gen­er­ated a lot of good con­ver­sa­tion and ques­tions.

Fair par­tic­i­pants were served a tasty soup and sand­wich lun­cheon. Prizes, gen­er­ously do­nated by busi­nesses and or­ga­ni­za­tions in the Clarenville area, were drawn for through­out the day.

The day ended with mu­sic pro­vided by the ever-pop­u­lar Art & Austin. Many danced while oth­ers clapped or sang along with their favourites.

Larry Reid, chair­per­son of Ran­dom Age-Friendly Com­mu­ni­ties board, feels the fair was an­other great suc­cess and a great way to get prac­ti­cal in­for­ma­tion on ser­vices and pro­grams to se­niors to as­sist them and pro­mote so­cial in­clu­sion and ed­u­ca­tion.

He thanked lo­cal busi­nesses, or­ga­ni­za­tions and vol­un­teers for their sup­port, and the Town of Clarenville for help­ing make Clarenville an age-friendly com­mu­nity where se­niors can age ac­tively, live in se­cu­rity and en­joy good health.

The town and Ran­dom Age­Friendly Com­mu­ni­ties have a plan to make Clarenville a great place to live and age, and one of the pri­or­i­ties is ac­cess to in­for­ma­tion and ser­vice.

Se­niors end their day at the fair danc­ing to the mu­sic of Art & Austin.

Pho­tos cour­tesy of Ran­dom Age-Friendly Com­mu­ni­ties Se­niors make their way around to visit each ex­hibitor to gain valu­able in­for­ma­tion on their ser­vices and prod­ucts.

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