Elsipogtog Health and Wellness Centre

In 2010 the Elsipogtog Health and Wellness Centre launched a program called Elders on the Move. The program, which offers wellness-based activities for individuals in the community over the age of 60, puts on exercise programming twice a week, and a more social-based activity once a month. The gym activity happens every Tuesday and Thursday morning, when members meet up to do circuit training and cardio.

The programming was originally designed by the community’s physiotherapist who oversaw all new participants, along with a nurse, testing blood pressures and making sure that there were no health concerns. These days, the participants can’t wait to take part, and aside from a staff member who attends to make sure everything is going well, elders now take part with confidence and independence.

The more social side of the program consists of an outing that happens once a month. The core group of about twenty is always well represented, and the event is open for all elders in the community to attend. Past activities have included apple and strawberry picking, a scavenger hunt, a nature walk and even bowling. At the most recent event, an older gentleman with very limited mobility surprised everybody with not only the highest score, but three strikes in a row as well!

Participants absolutely love the program, and are experiencing a renewed joie-de-vivre and sense of purpose in their daily routines. The group has more activities planned for the future and all participants live by a Mi’kmaq motto: Olatan, Oleasin, na Oleetesg; Eat well, live well, live longer.