Better at Home

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Better at Home?
What services does Better at Home provide?
Who delivers the services?
Am I eligible and how do I apply?
Who pays for Better at Home?
Which communities does Better at Home currently serve?
How were Better at Home communities chosen?
How much funding does each Better at Home program receive?
Who decided which Better at Home services are available in each community?
What are the common standards of all Better at Home programs?
I want to know more!

What is Better at Home?

Better at Home is a United Way program that helps BC seniors continue living independently in their own homes by providing simple, non-medical home support services.

What services does Better at Home provide?

The range of Better at Home services available varies from community to community, depending on the specific needs of local seniors. The Better at Home basked of services includes:

  • Friendly visiting
  • Transportation
  • Light yard work
  • Minor home repairs
  • Light housekeeping
  • Grocery shopping
  • Snow shoveling

Who delivers the services?

In each community, local non-profit organizations deliver Better at Home services. Services are delivered by a mix of volunteers, contractors and paid staff.

Am I eligible and how do I apply?

If you are a senior living in a community that has a Better at Home program, you may be eligible. You can apply by contacting your local Better at Home provider (there is a list of providers here). A program representative will speak with you, assess your needs, and suggest services that may be of interest to you.

Who pays for Better at Home?

The Government of BC has contributed funding to the United Way of the Lower Mainland to manage Better at Home across BC. Individual community organizations will accept donations, raise funds, and encourage volunteer participation in the program.

Seniors who receive Better at Home services will also pay a fee for some services based on their income. Some services may be free.  These fees-for-service are fed back into the local program.

Which communities does Better at Home currently serve?

United Way manages 67 Better at Home programs across the province. You can find a list of current Better at Home communities here.

How were Better at Home communities chosen?

Program sites were selected with the help of regional experts, for example people from seniors’ organizations and the Regional Health Authorities managing the seniors’ portfolio. A community development approach was used to identify communities with a high number of vulnerable seniors who would benefit from these services.

How much funding does each Better at Home program receive?

Funding is reserved for each local program based on the demographics of the community such as the number of seniors residing in that community, the income of those seniors, etc. The funding allocation will be different in each community because of their distinct community characteristics.

Who decided which Better at Home services are available in each community?

Seniors, organizations that serve seniors, and other community members who are knowledgeable about the needs of seniors have helped determine which services are most needed.

What are the common standards of all Better at Home programs?

Although there are many differences between the Better at Home programs, there are also commonalities:

  • service fees are established on an income-based sliding scale, which ensures that services are free for low income seniors and market rate for seniors with an income above the BC average.
  • all volunteers providing services directly to seniors must have a criminal record check.
  • programs have a local Advisory Committee for guidance, advocacy and to help support the integration of the program into community, and be responsive to seniors's needs.
  • programs submit regular reports to the provincial office to monitor performance and progress.
  • program coordinators engage in a Community of Practice which includes sharing learining activities, discussing and sharing best practices on an online portal, and meeting annually for training opportunities and participation in collective dialogue.  These activities help develop the capacity of each local program to best serve and support the seniors in BC.

I want to know more!

For more information, please contact:
Email: info@betterathome.ca
Phone: 604.268.1312

Last updated: November 3, 2015