From Arrow Lakes to Vanderhoof: six rural communities receive funding for pilot program

June 12th, 2015

United Way’s Better at Home program initially explored five locations for the Rural and Remote Pilot Project. Six communities have since received funding and are setting up their pilot programs.

Seniors who live in B.C.’s rural and remote communities have different needs than seniors living in cities. That’s why United Way’s Better at Home designed a Rural and Remote Pilot Project. Stakeholder engagement processes were conducted in early 2015 in Nakusp, Invermere, the Villages of Fraser Lake and Valemount, and Pender Island.  The communities were selected based on a number of factors including a high percentage of seniors living in the area and community capacity to manage a program.  During the community engagement phase, another rural and remote pilot community with a high percentage of seniors was explored: the Village of Granisle, a remote community of about 300 people in Northern B.C. 

Five of the six rural and remote pilot programs have developed regional models for services:

  • Arrow Lakes Better at Home (serving Nakusp, Burton, Fauquier, and Edgewood
  • Columbia Valley Better at Home (serving Invermere, Spillimacheen, Edgewater, Radium, Windemere, Panorama,  and Canal Flats)
  • North Central BC (serving Fraser Lake, Fort St. James, and Vanderhoof)
  • Robson Valley (serving Valemount, McBride, Dunster, and Tête Jaune Cache)
  • Southern Gulf Islands (serving Pender Islands, Mayne Island, Galiano Island, and Saturna Island)

The Village of Granisle plans to create a localised, single-community program.

The stakeholder engagement reports are available online at the Better at Home website. In the coming months, the pilot programs will be supported to set up their local models and start providing Better at Home services to support rural and remote seniors remain independent at home.