Our idea is to create a safe space and opportunity to gather with Elders in our region for a meal/event once per month. We provide monthly meals through the use of a rented space in our region to prepare, cook and package our meals while our own facility is undergoing necessary renovations from a flood in our region in 2020. Our organization staff and members as well as volunteers throughout other companies and organizations in the community, deliver these meals to the elderly members of NAFC via personal transportation. We have a partnership with the local Salvation Army as well and they also deliver meals and expand our reach into rural areas. The meal program allows us to support our goal of strengthening Aboriginal and Non-Aboriginal ties within the community from the interactions between volunteers, partnering organizations, elders, youth and our team as well as often reach at-risk or times of hardships for many families and elders. In previous years prior to the unfortunate natural disaster to our kitchen facility, we were also able to provide food hampers to our members and community. This is a portion of our previous food system we would potentially reignite through this project with greater funding support given the rising cost of groceries and supplies to sustain this program. Our project would have a ripple effect, providing meals and gathering opportunities to our members and community can have a great impact not only on those receiving the support but the lives providing the support through volunteering with us and supporting the cooking, preparation and serving of our meals and organizing of our events.
The Nistawoyou Association Friendship Centre is dedicated to the development of social and recreational activities of our community. Our mission is to promote and encourage better relationships between Aboriginal and Non- Aboriginal peoples in our community and act as a liaison between the people of Aboriginal background and government, voluntary agencies, industry and other groups.
Our building sustained damage during a downtown flood in 2020 and while awaiting repairs, we have not been operating out of our own building however maintaining our services, proving the strength of our organization and its need in our community. We have been a staple in the community, open to everyone while having a focus on our elders, youth and at-risk.
Who Will it Benefit?
Our elder supper program will focus on elders and seniors age 55+ within the Wood Buffalo region in Northern Alberta but will also impact the lives of their loved ones and families knowing they have this support from our organization. Elders and seniors will benefit through the receiving of meals as well as a social gathering in which they can develop healthy connections in a safe space.
Our volunteers and staff members will also benefit through this program by having the opportunity to connect with elders and seniors in our region - to gather, share and learn from them in a safe and welcoming environment as well as providing assistance and support to our elders and seniors. This will also impact our community partnerships with other organizations through the opportunity to learn more of our organization and members with the restart of our in person gatherings and opportunities to join us.