Stock photo from Unsplash.com
The B.C. Minister of Health is looking for volunteer to engage in meaningful conversations with residents in Quesnel about their experience living in long-term care. (Stock photo from Unsplash.com)

Stock photo from Unsplash.com The B.C. Minister of Health is looking for volunteer to engage in meaningful conversations with residents in Quesnel about their experience living in long-term care. (Stock photo from Unsplash.com)

Volunteers needed for elder interviews in Quesnel

BC Ministry of Health organizing survey

Emily Jurek grew up in Quesnel. She’s still a young professional, working with the BC Ministry of Health, but one day she will be senior citizen. She is helping coordinate a survey of Quesnel elders so improvements can be made and one day, when she is perhaps in a facility like Dunrovin Park Lodge, it will be an even better care facility than it is today.

The survey is part of a provincewide initiative to consult with seniors directly, one on one, in conversations that draw out information from the very ones who are living in publicly funded care homes. Who better to inform policy makers and caregivers?

“We are still looking for a few volunteers in Quesnel, although they would need to sign up immediately in order to be helpful before the project closes in Quesnel. Surveys are in progress daily at Dunrovin Park Lodge,” Jurek said. “Volunteers are needed to visit with these residents, ask their opinion, and brighten their day. This is important work, and it does make a difference for seniors locally and provincially.”

According to Jurek, there are more than 29,000 people living in 294 publicly subsidized care homes in BC. Every resident will be approached to participate in an in-person interview conducted by trained volunteers like the ones still needed in Quesnel.

In addition, all family and visitors of each resident will be invited to complete an online survey. The rich information collected will be an important source of information for the Seniors Advocate to identify system wide issues. A similar consultation effort was done in 2016-17, at the time the largest gathering of information ever done in that way in Canada. It resulted in some wild applause and some scathing criticism.

That report is entitled Every Voice Counts and can be read on the website of the BC Seniors’ Advocate. One of the best parts of this volunteer-led initiative is the interactions between the elders and the interviewers, most of whom live in the same community.

“Our previous volunteers have had overwhelmingly positive experiences,” said Jurek. “I hope you will support our efforts to ensure that the quality of long-term care in every community in BC is something we can be proud of.”

Once the interviews in Quesnel are finished, other communities in the Central Interior will also be serviced in this way. Jurek said, “Williams Lake is one area where we are especially in need of volunteers to conduct upcoming surveys with their local seniors.”

For more information or to apply as a volunteer, visit:

Online: www.surveybcseniors.org/volunteer

Call: 1-877-952-9181

Every Voice Counts report can be read here:

Every Voice Counts: Provincial Residential Care Survey Results

Quesnel