By Sheena Read, QMI Agency
April 22, 2013
An upcoming conference will highlight elder abuse and available support systems.
The Nanton Quality of Life Foundation will be hosting a seniors conference called Shining A Light: A Seniors Conference on May 8.
The one-day conference will offer a series of workshops providing education and awareness to help local seniors, family members, service providers, volunteers and the public understand what elder abuse is.
“We know the need is out there,” says Nanton Quality of Life Foundation executive director Nicole Van Langen. “In there region there has been instances of senior abuse.”
The conference will help participants understand the many facets of abuse, and how to respond to the various forms of abuse.
It is the hope that this understanding will reduce the incidence of elder abuse through increased awareness and knowledge of the issue, says Van Langen.
“I think people are becoming more informed as to what constitutes the specifics of elder abuse,” says Van Langen. “I think it also helps that the government has provided a definition for it.”
Van Langen says she doesn’t believe that elder abuse is increasing, but likens it how there was a movement of growing awareness for domestic abuse about 30 years ago.
Elder abuse can occur in financial, physical, prescription, sexual, emotional and neglect forms.
“I think that education and information equals power,” says Van Langen.
“We have experts in those fields coming in to define all areas of abuse, and what to do if you’re a victim,” says Van Langen.
Included in the day’s workshops will be an expert on frauds and scams.
“I think that what happens is people don’t know what to do once it happens. He’ll show the information on what to do to protect yourself,” she says.
Another workshop will deal with how to maintain mental wellness.
“People will suffer in silence, especially in a small town,” she says. ‘
Van Langen says that the Nanton Quality of Life Foundation has obtained some great resource materials for packages for participants.
Although the target audience for the conference is seniors, Van Langen says that is applicable for anyone who has a senior in their life, as well as service providers like financial institutions, volunteers and care givers.
“In order to pinpoint abuse, sometimes it takes a team effort,” she says. The conference will be holding a limited number of seats for service providers.
“The information provided will be just as applicable,” says Van Langen.
There is no cost to attend this conference, and everyone is welcome.
For more information, contact the Nanton Quality of Life Foundation office at 403-646-2436.
SOURCE: The Nanton News
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