Recently, I was invited by the Greater Sudbury chapter of the Canadian Association of Retired Persons (CARP) to proclaim National Senior’s Day and raise CARP’s flag over Tom Davies Square. It truly was an honour to lead the ceremonies.
CARP is committed to a “New Vision of Aging for Canada,” and promoting social change that will bring security, equity and freedom to its members. These are values we strive for every day here in Greater Sudbury.
At the city, our goal is to promote and protect the interests, rights and quality of life for all citizens so that we live active, independent and purposeful lives as we age. On this journey, CARP is one of many valuable community groups working with and for older adults in our city.
Consider some of the things CARP and its members do, just in our city:
- CARP members have contributed thousands of dollars to fund health-care projects, as well as the Sudbury-Manitoulin Alzheimer Society, money raised through fundraising and selling tickets for the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association for their “Ultimate Dream Home.”
- CARP sponsors a number of local events for members throughout the city, such as visits to Science North, Dynamic Earth and the Sudbury Theatre Centre, to name a few.
- Through its national association, local CARP members such as president Patricia Douglas are able to share our success stories on a national stage, and bring back lessons from other communities.
CARP is just one of almost two-dozen associations, clubs and community centres representing the interests of older adults in Greater Sudbury.
Much of the prosperity we enjoy today is due to a lifetime of hard work and dedication by our older adults. Today’s seniors fought for our freedom, built our institutions and laid the foundation for the prosperity we enjoy today.
We can all think of a senior Sudburian who has made an impact in our lives. They are our mentors, our leaders, our grandparents and our loved ones. They are our volunteers, our neighbours and our role models.
Through their commitment to remain active, engaged and informed, older adults are demonstrating to Greater Sudburians of all ages exactly what it means to age well. And we are all benefiting from their ongoing contributions.
There are many opportunities that go along with an aging population, and I thank groups such as Health Sciences North and the North East Specialized Geriatric Centre for their leadership in helping us find them.
It’s fitting on National Senior’s Day to focus more on the contributions of this generation.
Together, we are building a sense of community and shared values in Greater Sudbury that makes us a model city in which live, work, play and retire.
Marianne Matichuk is mayor of the City of Greater Sudbury.