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Newsletter April 2020
Editor's Notes

Welcome to another edition of the 50+ Newsletter.  During this time of isolation we are trying to stick with our mandate and keep you socially connected and active in different ways than we normally do.

I had a request last month to do exposés on leaders and their classes.  So this month Lucie Stein of the Senior Low Impact Class is the featured focus.  I hope you enjoy it.  And we already have next month's feature guest lined up - so stay tuned.

There are also virtual tours of all sorts to help while away the hours.  I'm sure there will something of interest for everyone.

The board is also looking for your feedback on how we communicate.  So, please do take the quick survey below.

Please feel free to forward this newsletter to friends and family.  As always I look forward to your feedback, comments and suggestions.  And of course we all want you to stay safe and healthy during this difficult time.

Carmen Grosse

Photo of president Sue Hunter

President's Message

Although we have not had the opportunity to participate in 50+ activities throughout the month of April, I must say, time has still gone by very fast. Hearing from friends and family, I understand spring cleaning got underway early this year. I have also heard of several house painting projects that have also been completed. Many people have found new ways to keep busy. Some with social media, others with a new hobby or learning various new things through the internet.

As this has been a difficult time for most people, a time of change and uncertainty, I encourage you to think of better days ahead. Look to each day for something to be thankful for. Give support to those who are struggling. Sometimes, a quick call to check in, can make someone’s day a little brighter.

I choose to not look much beyond the next day or two, so as not to become overwhelmed. Everyone handles stress differently, there is no right or wrong way. I am happy to be home in Brockville and very happy to be Canadian.

Our AGM (Annual General Meeting) is held in May each year as per our bylaws state. All members of Brockville 50+ Activity Centre are invited to this meeting.

As we are unable to get together in the way we traditionally do, we will be having this meeting via Zoom video conferencing. The application is very easy to navigate and register into on your tablet, laptop or computer. There is no cost for the application. Many people use it with friends and family to have group conversations.

The business portion of the meeting will include various reports, including financial, on the past year and election of directors for 2020 - 2022. The AGM of the Shepherd’s Welcome Foundation will also be on the agenda.

In due time, every member will receive more information and an email invitation to the Annual General Meeting. We genuinely hope many of you will be able to join us and look forward to seeing you online!

Sue Hunter


Shepherd's Centre Foundation

April 2020

Shepherd’s Centre Foundation Directors Needed.

This Foundation which provides annual funding to our Activity Centre has a need for 1-2 volunteers to serve on the board of directors.

The separate organization, the Brockville 50+ Activity Centre (formerly the Shepherd’s Welcome Centre) was formed and the Foundation has been supporting our organization by way of an annual donation for many years now.

The Foundation’s board of directors, with administrative assistance, oversees the management of the funds and assets of the trust.

When necessary, the board meets once or twice a year to review, with associated financial advisers, the performance of these investments and the management of assets

Both groups want to maximize return on investments and safeguard the long-term value of the funds. The purpose is to continue to support well into the future the provision of organized activities for area seniors. The funds are used to help organizations such as Shepherd’s Welcome Centre (now Brockville 50+ Activity Centre) to operate.

*Directors vote to decide the best approach to handling the funds.

*Meetings are usually called only when requested by the Foundation’s financial advisers.

Prospective directors should have some financial or business background.

If you would like to be considered for a Foundation board position, or need further information, please contact Marian Rafferty at the AC office: or phone 613-345-2412.

Lucie Stein - Seniors Low Impact Exercise Classes

I had the great pleasure of speaking with Lucie Stein about the senior low impact class; its popularity and benefits, as well as her dedication. I will let her tell her story in her own words, because like everything Lucie does, it tells the story best. I just want to introduce this segment of the newletter and tell you what an exceptional phone call we had. Not only did Lucie have answers to all my questions prepared, but because of her exuberance, we wondered off on all sorts of little tangents.

Lucie is the gold standard of volunteers. She puts her life second to the demands of her classes. Winter vacations are not as easily planned when there is a pull for the help she provides her students. She also tries to stay in the background and not garner praise, but yet she is very thankful for the students in her class that volunteer to help her set up and down at the beginning and end of class. She has had 4 surgeries over the last couple of years and is still going strong. Her doctor has told her that the work she does with the seniors in Brockville is noticeable, his patients do much better if they partake in her class rather than not.

During this time of isolation she is looking at options to carry on the class, but as yet has not been able to find a suitable virtual venue.

This woman is unstoppable and the 50+ Activity Centre is very fortunate to benefit from her dedication, enthusiasm and love of humanity. She also suggests that people move out of their comfort zones and volunteer. The rewards are so satisfying.

Following are the questions I had prepared and her answers:

Are you related to the late Lawrence Stein, our benefactor?

Yes, Mr. Stein was my father-in-law.

How long have you been doing this?

I started attending classes through the Shepherd Welcome Centre in 2013 under the leadership of Kay Carlson and Muriel Landeroute. I formally started teaching classes through the CPHC (Community and Primary Health Care) in 2014, and here at the centre in 2015.

What do you do to prep for your classes?

Through the summer I usually spend several hours a week looking at exercise videos and routines on YouTube. I try to find new exercises to ensure we get the most benefit out of our time together in class. As well, I search for music to use in the classes. Finding music that offers a good beat that isn’t too fast or too slow can be challenging. To create one class routine usually takes me about 8 hours. To keep things fun and interesting I insert Halloween, Irish and Christmas routines to keep in line with the time of year. I reuse routines through the year. Once the season has started, it’s usually a couple of hours a week practicing routines and fine tuning for the classes.

When creating a routine, I try to keep in mind the many restrictions and limitations of the individuals attending the classes. Some participants are quite active, while others have experienced challenges in their lives. I do my best to offer alternative options to exercises such as sitting to do the routine, or shortening their movements to avoid stressing their muscles. It definitely is not a one size fits all type of program.

Did you have any formal training?

Yes, I did complete a certification program sponsored by the CPHC in 2015. The program was offered through Western University and taught me how to design and lead effective fitness classes for community dwelling older adults. Having said that, I do remind my participants that I am not a doctor or physio therapist, but simply a volunteer.

What motivated you to become a 50+ Activity Centre leader?

My mom. My mother had always been pretty active but in her later years, I saw how she struggled just to get the easiest tasks done. She passed away in April of 2012. When the opportunity arose for me to become involved I took it, to honour my mom. My motivation is to offer some simple exercises in an environment that doesn’t judge or evaluate, but that offers fellowship mixed in with some fun music and motivating exercises.

Leading two large classes can be overwhelming at times, but I do my best.

What other interests do you have?

For the most part, I like to volunteer but I like to be in the background and am private about my involvement. Fair to say I reach out and am blessed often. I’m a mother of two adult children and enjoy their company a great deal. I love to garden, but back and knee issues have curtailed that somewhat. However, you can still find me kneeling over one of my 5 large flower beds weeding away! Probably my favourite interest is golfing with my husband. Fortunately, we are both avid golfers and we love to take golf vacations when we are able. This is one of the few negative aspects of teaching as getting away can sometimes be challenging to organize.


This is a lot of work. More than some people realize. But I can honestly say that the majority of my participants appreciate the efforts I make to lead these classes. They are generous in their praise and looking down and seeing their smiles fills my heart. When I get a bit tired and think it’s time to take a break, I try to remember the student who comes up and whispers through tears “I can get into and out of the tub by myself now” or “my doctor is so impressed with my progress”. What higher praise than this could I ask for?

2 Poetic Views of Isolation

And The People Stayed Home
-Kitty O'Meara

And the people stayed home.
And read books and listened, and rested and exercised,
and made art and played games,
and learned new ways of being and were still.
And listened more deeply.
Some meditated, some prayed, some danced.
Some met their shadows.
And the people began to think differently.

And the people healed.
And, in the absence of people living in ignorant, dangerous, mindless and heartless ways
the earth began to heal.

And when the danger passed, and the people joined together again,
they grieved their losses, and made new choices,
and dreamed new images,
and created new ways to live and heal the earth fully,
as they had been healed.

Let's All Drink To Lockdown
-Jan Beaumont

I'm normally a social girl
I love to meet my mates
But lately with the virus here
We can't go out the gates.

You see, we are the 'oldies' now
We need to stay inside
If they haven't seen us for a while
They'll think we've upped & died.

They'll never know the things we did
Before we got this old
There wasn't any Facebook
So not everything was told.

We may seem sweet old ladies
Who would never be uncouth
But we grew up in the 60s & 70s
If you only knew the truth!

There was sex and drugs and rock 'n roll
The pill and miniskirts
We smoked, we drank, we partied hard
And were quite outrageous flirts.

Then we settled down, got married
And turned into someone's mum,
Somebody's wife, then nana,
Who on earth did we become?

We didn't mind the change of pace
Because our lives were full
But to bury us before we're dead
Is like a red rag to a bull!

So here you find me stuck inside
For 4 weeks or maybe more
I'd only just found myself again
Then I had to close the door!

It didn't really bother me
I'd while away the hour
I'd bake for all the family
But I've got no bloody flour!

Now Netflix is just wonderful
I like a gutsy thriller
I'm swooning over Idris
Or some random sexy killer.

At least I've got a stash of booze
For when I'm being idle
There's wine & whiskey, even gin
Maybe spin some vinyl!

So let's all drink to lockdown
To recovery and health
And hope this bloody virus
Doesn't decimate our wealth.

We'll all get through the crisis
And be back to join our mates
Just hoping I'm not far too wide
To fit through the flamin' gates!

Virtual Tours

More places to visit while you are isolated at home.  Check out live streams, webcams and other high-tech solutions to experiencing Canada and the world.  Click on the buttons below for animal sightings, natural vistas, historical sites, and cultural venues.  Happy travels!

English Heritage Sites
Arts & Culture
Canadian Museum for Human Rights
Canadian Farms
The Melbourne Zoo
Monterey Bay Aquarium
Animal Live Cams
Around the World
Hiking World Famous Trails
One Last Thing To Do
Participate in a Research survey

The link below is for a survey for seniors engaged in hobbies or activities. Feel free to complete it if you would like. It will take approximately 8-10 minutes.

Find out more

5 Wall St., Brockville
ON K6V 4R8 Canada

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