By sharing a monthly meal together, we build a true sense of family and belonging. Attendees not only enjoy healthy and nutritious meals, but have a chance to sit down together and socialize, build friendships and be a part of a loving family.
The purpose of the Super Smoothies program is to create a fun & welcoming environment that promotes social interaction, relationship building and ultimately a place where residents can get to know their neighbors. The smoothies are also a nutritious snack filled with nutrients and vitamins that are often lacking in the diets of our guests.
Currently, this program is run by the Alumni of the Union Gospel Mission Recovery Program, which is very inspiring to our guests. We offer friendship and support in order to diminish loneliness and promote health.
Acknowledgements: Alumni of the Union Gospel Mission Recovery Program
We enjoy hosting weekly Seated Exercise sessions with our members. This is a great opportunity to stay active, increase strength and mobility and have fun!
Every month our lobby turns into a “retail store” where donated clothing and personal items are laid out to be “purchased” by our “customers”. By giving the residents free tokens which they can exchange for clothes, it imparts a sense of autonomy as well as an opportunity to choose the styles they enjoy.
Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday morning the residents are welcomed downstairs by the smell of coffee. We offer hot coffee and tea, bagels and other breakfast necessities, giving them that pick me up they need to start their days on the right foot.
They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day, so we thought we would share it together. Every second Friday we provide a continental style breakfast and coffee for the residents to enjoy in the lobby so they can start their day in a healthy and positive way.
Building meaningful and supportive friendships that instil value and worth by having fun together. Join in on a fun day of trivia, bingo, pictionary, chess, cribbage or checkers and enjoy meeting new friends.
Working with men who face physical disabilities, mental health issues and may be at risk of homelessness, we are able to offer one-on-one support in various areas such as help with accessing resources, groceries, laundry, counsel, bedding, and various other concerns.
Every month we want to let our residents know that we’re happy that they were born, so we will be having a birthday party! BALLOONS, CAKE, CARDS, SINGING, FAMILY & FUN! Our aim is that every person leaves knowing that they are special and loved. This is also a great excuse to get together and have a PARTY!
We are so grateful to have local hairstylists volunteer their time and talents to offer complimentary hair cuts & beard trims once a month! We all have a little more pep in our step when we’re lookin’ fresh!
On occasion residents of the Veterans Manor are admitted into the hopital for various health reasons. We genuinely feel honored that we get to sit with them while they are lonely, hold their hand while they are scared and pray with them while they are hurting. We count it a complete privilege to be someone’s “person” when they may have no other family to call their own. We have walked alongside a lot of hurting people, we have cared for the sick and we have comforted the dying. It is a hard road but we are so thankful that we can offer true love and hope to the hurting.
Many of our residents live with various mobility issues or vulnerabilities that make everyday errands difficult or even unsafe. We are able to offer safe van rides to the bank, medical appointments and other important destinations allowing our residents to maintain independence and control over the daily tasks that they wouldn’t be able to complete otherwise.
With outings ranging from walks in Stanley Park, to seeing plays at the Cultch, to learning about tropical birds at the Blodel Conservatory, the Afternoon Outings program gives the gentlemen a fun and safe environment to get some exercise and explore our beautiful city. The program promotes social interaction, low impact exercise, relationship building and gives an opportunity for residents to get to know their neighbours in shared experience based setting.
Building meaningful and supportive friendships means helping our residents in all their needs, including their living space. Many of our residents struggle with mobility limitations which make it difficult for them to clean their rooms. Clean walls and tidy kitchens make for a higher quality of life.
By celebrating holidays such as Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas together, we aim to create special family memories with our guests. Holidays can often feel very lonely for residents of the Downtown Eastside and we want to provide a welcoming atmosphere to celebrate together, enjoy a delicious meal and be with friends and family that we love.
The Annual Family Picnic in the Park and going to the PNE are examples of great ways to get out of our day to day surroundings and create great memories while having fun and experiencing new things.
Whole Way House is open 7 days a week from 8am-6pm for the tenants of the Veterans Manor to enjoy at their leisure. We serve 180 cups of free coffee every week and provide snacks when available. Books, games and movies are always available for their use and enjoyment.
In an effort to improve quality of life and provide natural beauty, we would like to beautify and support the existing rooftop and courtyard gardens at the Veterans Manor.
Pet Therapy is a great way for our residents to feel seen and known, and something to look forward to and feel connected by. Through the presence of dogs in our office and the responsibility of a fish tank, we see many of the residents come alive.
Moving into a new building can be a stressful experience, so we try to make the process as positive experience as possible complete with welcome packages! In partnership with the Westin Bayshore we are able to provide new towels, bed linens, dishes and hygiene products to give all new tenants a fresh start.
We believe cooking and eating together is fun and really helps to ReConnect people and build relationships and friendships, which are so important because of the prominent loneliness and isolation in the DTES which can lead to hopelessness.
Acknowledgements: Chef David Robertson, The Dirty Apron