Our Latest Updates

NEWS!  Bridge Lessons AVAILABLE at McMartin House!

If you are interested in learning how to play Bridge (or to improve your skills) NOW IS YOUR OPPORTUNITY. 

Bridge Lessons at McMartin House are only available every three or four years, and our new opportunity has arrived.

Our goal is to help you learn, update, or refresh your skills with carefully-structured Bridge Lessons (basic Standard American).  These will be offered on Monday afternoons, starting January 22 to March 4, from 1:00 to 3:00 at McMartin House on Gore Street, Perth.  For members  of the McMartin House/Perth Seniors Fellowship, Lessons are free. Our Lesson’s Textbook  is $3.00.  Non-Members must pay a membership fee of $30.00 per year (which also allows you to join any of the other activities available at McMartin House without additional cost (except for Yoga Classes for which there may be additional fees).

Who can attend?  Well, Senior Activity Members at McMartin House are generally fifty years old and up into the nineties, but we also admit younger people with special needs or with physical handicaps. Over the years, we have seen players in their late nineties playing as well or better than some of our younger members.

These lessons are only offered in the January-February period every three or four years. There is room for 20 players (5 tables of four) and registering for a seat in the 2024 session is on a first-come first served basis. Some seats will be occupied by mentors. There are usually more applicants than seats available.

Instruction is provided by Kveta Privora, a championship player. She knows Bridge inside out! She is also a patient and helpful instructor. The way the sessions are set up, Kveta walks the group through a lesson (with lots of opportunities for learners to ask questions). Then the tables immediately start playing Bridge. Kveta, and volunteer mentors from the Friday Bridge Club will either be seated at a table with learners or watching for those that want help and going to them and providing advice.

This is a great way to learn. With help available from a friendly crew, new players can learn without stress and get opportunities to practice what is being taught.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity!  For more information and  to pre-register  call Kveta at 613-300-9502.

 

BE AWARE OF NEW CHALLENGES FROM COVID

"I would suggest that people check the COVID levels like you check the weather and adapt your behaviour according to your risk level," Dr, Vera Etches, our Regional Medical Officer of Health told CTV News at Six last Spring.

"So younger people, people who are vaccinated, we see the lower likelihood of severe illness. When you are older, you have an immunocompromised state or someone in your family is like that, then you do want to be careful and choose to wear mask indoors, meet outdoors on the patio.

"We're trying to find the balance with the need for social connections, that is clear."

Etches says the message is people should adapt their behaviours to the current level of COVID-19 in the community.

"We're very high and now that a return to those masks indoors, in grocery stores that can make a difference for people."

We should note that through the fall and into the winter season, the potential for infection from Covid is still running fairly high.

LETTER to ACTIVITY DIRECTORS and MEMBERS of PERTH SENIORS FELLOWSHIP

Hi Everyone, 

With respect to coping with Covid, we are hearing and seeing many changes over the past while. Many of these changes are very encouraging and challenging to all of us! The future will show us which are viable and which are not.

With the easing of restrictions, we have reopened the Perth Seniors Fellowship for Activities For Seniors and are very excited to welcome all back when they are ready to begin. Since we are operating a Seniors Building, we asking our members to take appropriate precautions. Everyone attending must also sign a disclaimer freeing PSF from any associated liability before being admitted.  Your membership cards will verify that each of you are willing to comply with regulations.  

Dr. Vera Etches, our regional Medical Officer of Health, is still concerned about the potential for an increased number of infections from the latest versions of Covid.  She encourages self-awareness, self protection  through available vaccines and caution about attending any group sessions if you have any symptoms at all.

We know that opening after such a difficult time will be a learning experience for all of us.  Much as we would like everything to go back to normal that won’t be immediately possible, but we will strive to make a new normal that will fill the needs of all our members. If you have any suggestions we will be glad to hear them. Right now our only wish is to get everything up and running and keep everyone as safe as possible.  We will do all we can to maintain a clean, safe environment for all those who use our facilities. 

Thanks for your cooperation and assistance! 

Dear Members of Perth Seniors Fellowship

IT'S UP TO YOU

At a time when we have been informed that in Ontario, restrictions are being lifted, Boards operating activities for seniors are hard-pressed to know what is safe and what is not.  We do everything we can to keep the inside of McMartin House free of contamination with the cooperation of activities that have accepted their own responsibilities in this regard.  We are ready to reopen, and whether you attend is up to you.

There are still some concerns on the horizon —like the advent of more new, mutant strains of the COVID-19 virus.  We also have some practical, common-sense concerns.  We deal with seniors, and seniors often are immunosuppressed to varying degrees.  The greater the degree of immunosuppression, the greater the risk of infectivity.  At the same time, while children are seldom infected, they may carry and transmit the virus. Seniors have families, visit families and in some cases may carry the virus back to activities with their peers.

In view of all of the above, we are trying, as a Board, to ensure that reopening is safe.  We have a large number of older seniors –potentially the most “immunocompromised” groups. We have established some policies intended to safeguard them (such as requiring attendees to show proof of vaccination or letters from an authority (such as a physician) affirming that an individual has acquired immunity from infection and recovery from the disease). With the assistance of Activity Directors, infection control requirements and practices will be inplemented and monitored, including masks and social distancing to the extent possible.  

We shall be doing what we can!  However, our individual members must continue to bear responsibility for themselves. Each member must use their knowledge of their own health, especially of any urgent degree of immunosuppression, and apply their own “common sense” to assess their own exposure to risk. Each individual must decide whether an activity open because COVID-19 restrictions have been lifted is or is not safe for their attendance. 

We may face new challenges and new restrictions, or even new lockdowns. All we can do is react as these occur and continue to try to do whatever is required in the new circumstances.  Please stay safe!

AN INVITATION FROM OUR STAMP CLUB

Are you a stamp collector or interested in becoming one? Then the Perth Stamp Club is a place you need to visit!  Whether you collect stamps, covers, souvenir sheets, cancels, or maybe you collect a specific country, or a special topic? This club is for you.

We are a small group of enthusiastic philatelists. We love to look at stamps, talk about stamps and share our hobby with others. If you want to learn about stamps or to share your interest in stamps please join us.

We meet at McMartin House on the second and fourth Wednesday evening of the month from September to June.

For more information please contact Susan Murray at: drmurray@magma.ca

MARY BOWRIN BOARDROOM AT McMARTIN HOUSE

The new Mary Bowrin Boardroom  seats 8 comfortably. Its central feature is a large double pedestal oak board table styled to be complementary with the heritage of McMartin House.  Other features include conference chairs with armrests, a historic (now decorative) fireplace, oven and cook top, sink, coffeemaker, microwave, printer, projection screen and other accessories commonly needed or useful at Board meetings. For pictures of the new Mary Bowrin Boardroom and information on rentals, click the Mary Bowrin Boardroom tab at the upper right on our home page.

PSF is very grateful to have been the beneficiary in 2019 of a substantial In-Trust award from the Meriama Fund, which has helped us to develop and maintain the “Mary Bowrin Boardroom” within McMartin House. Additonal grants have subsequently helped to finance selected maintenance projects within McMartin House. In February 2021, a second major donation from the Meriama fund was received and will greatly help Perth Seniors Fellowship to survive the Covid 19 crisis financially and continue to carry out these responsibiities. More recently, throughout the Covid 19 Pandemic, further substantial awards from the Meriama Fund have helped PSF maintain payments required to sustain its operations during a period when our activities have been closed and our usual sources of revenue have been unavailable. We are very, very grateful for this vital support at a critical time.

 

NEW: ONTARIO SENIORS DENTAL CARE PROGRAM

Raymond Cho, the Government of Ontario's Minister for Seniors and Accessibilty, has asked us to share the following information:

Ontario is committed to keeping seniors healthy but untreated oral care can lead to future chronic diseases and reduced quality of life. That is why our government launched the Ontario Seniors Dental Care Program, which will provide free routine dental care for eligible low-income seniors across the province. Ontarians aged 65 and over with an income of $19,300 or less, or couples with a combined annual income of $32,300 or less, who do not have dental benefits, will qualify for the Ontario Seniors Dental Care Program.

The new dental care program will be available through public health units, including some mobile dental clinics, as well as participating Community Health Centres and Aboriginal Health Access Centres. A new user-friendly web portal to apply for the program is now open and can be accessed via ontario.ca/SeniorsDental. Seniors can also pick up an application form at their local public health unit. 

To find out more, please call: 416-916-0204 or Toll-Free 1-833-207-4435;  TTY 1-800-855-0511

MAXINE McEACHERN NAMED HONOURARY MEMBER

At the September 19th 2019 Meeting of the Perth Seniors fellowship Board of Directors, recently retired Board Member Maxine McEachern was named Honourary Member of Perth Seniors Fellowship. This award recognizes special personal contributions assisting PSF to accomplish its Mission of "Serving social, intellectual and recreational needs of our mature adult community while preserving the heritage of McMartin House."  Previous recipients include John McCluskey,  and the late Keith Buchanan, Mary Bowrin, Helena Hardy, Judy Burns,and Gus Quattrrochi.