Dawson Creek 'Better at Home'

CASI Archive

CASI was a pilot project with an objective of helping seniors remain independent in their homes. The project was launched in Dawson Creek on October 4 2010. On April 1 2013 CASI transitioned into Better at Home - the program that was based on the lessons learned and the model developed by CASI.

A lot of things happened during the CASI Pilot Project - and we wanted to carry that forward into our new, Better at Home website - so on this CASI Archive page you will find the files, articles and images that were posted on the original casidc.org website.


Jan 30 2013 - News Release - Better at Home

On January 28th, 2013, The Province of BC and the United Way of the Lower Mainland released more information about the Better at Home Program. See PDF of News Release.

Better at Home has evolved from the CASI Pilot Project and grown to include over 50 communities in BC - currently in various stages of development. CASI Dawson Creek is proud to have been a part of the pilot process, learning, evolving, and sharing our experience to assist the Better at Home model to come into being.

We are looking forward to transitioning into a Better at Home site this spring. We do not anticipate any major changes to our current program and services (aside from the name change) and will do our best to make the transition as seamless as possible.

We also want to welcome our new Better at Home siblings throughout BC. Have a look at the press release to see all the communities that will soon have a Better at Home site.

January 17 2013

A Happy Number

CASI tracks our volunteers' hours as they go about helping seniors to remain independent. We did a little adding and we've come up with a very happy number....

Total Volunteer Hours in 2012 - (drum roll please...) 2,641

The number doesn't tell the stories of people leading more independent lives or of the friendships forged, but it's still a very impressive number and it does tell a story of a community of caring people who give of their time and energy unstintingly.

Thank you to our dedicated, wonderful volunteers!

And many thanks also to our hardworking housekeepers who are so reliable and thorough, and who have shown such commitment towards our mission and towards our senior clients.

Thank you all. I hope we can make 2013 an even more successful year for seniors in our community.

Dec 5 2012 - ARC Resources Ltd. Donates $3,000 to help seniors stay independent

Thank you ARC Resources Ltd - for your generous support of seniors in our community!

This is the second year that ARC Resources has made a donation to help seniors remain independent in their homes.


November 2012 - SPSASS donates wheelchair to Red Cross HELPS

On behalf of one of our host agencies, South Peace Seniors' Access Services Society, CASI Dawson Creek was pleased to pass on a wheelchair and several canes to the local Red Cross HELP organization. The Health Equipment Loan Program makes this equipment available to people who need it in our community. The items were gifted to SPSASS when the local Zellers store closed down and everyone agreed that it made sense to pass them on to a sister agency who could use them best. These types of equipment are often pivotal in a seniors' independence so we were happy to be of assistance to Red Cross HELP.

Red Cross HELP Volunteers: (standing left to right) Marlene Bily, Vicky Paul. (seated left to right) Marchetta Leoppky, Myrna Gardner. Standing with wheelchair Linda Studley, CASI Coordinator.

October 1st - 2012 - CASI 2nd Anniversary and National Seniors' Day Celebrated!

October 1st may have been National Seniors’ Day in Canada but it was also CASI’s Second Anniversary in Dawson Creek (Community Action for Seniors’ Independence). The day started with a delegation to Dawson Creek City Council, led by CASI Coordinator Linda Studley, and including representatives from CASI, its host agencies SPCRS and Seniors’ Access, and from the South Peace Senior Citizens’ Association. Studley gave a short address on how CASI has helped seniors remain independent with the help of community volunteers and contractors. She then thanked the City for their support of the seniors’ transit tours “Ticket to Ride”, where seniors discover the many opportunities and facilities in the community that are just a bus ticket away. Studley emphasized how important control over one’s transportation is to personal independence. An invitation was extended to join in the celebrations not only of the 2nd Anniversary, but of National Seniors’ Day. Creek. Mayor Mike Bernier then proclaimed October 1st “National Seniors’ Day”.

That afternoon over sixty visitors joined in the celebrations at the CASI Office. Local MLA Blair Lekstrom addressed the crowd, voicing his appreciation of the many contributions that seniors have made and still make to the community. Lekstrom joked that since it was his job to cut the cake he’d better keep his speech short as he didn’t want to get between the audience and their cake! Seniors, volunteers, community members, local dignitaries, and media mingled in a social, open house setting, enjoying live music from local performer Bill Studley and a surprise guest appearance of singer/musician Ruth Wagar. Door prizes were drawn, flower bouquets were awarded, and visitors sang along to favourite old songs. A late appearance of Mayor Mike Bernier and Councillor Cheryl Shuman was applauded as they had made the extra effort to attend by rushing from an important meeting especially to catch the tail end of the festivities.

It was revealed during the celebrations that, although a name change may be in the works, the CASI Project has excellent prospects of continuing to help seniors to remain independent for years to come.

MLA Blair Lekstrom and CASI Coordinator Linda Studley cut the cake!

Friendly Visitors and the seniors they visit. Kerry and Mona Jean (above), and Kathy and Elsie (right).

CASI - Second Anniversary and National Seniors Day - Oct 1st - 2012!

Join us on October 1st to celebrate the second anniversary of CASI DC - and coincidentally - the second National Seniors Day!

We'll be at the morning council meeting for the declaration of National Seniors Day - and then at 1:30 we'll host an open house from 1:30 to 3:30pm at the CASI office in the Dawson Co-op Mall (beside Sears). There'll be live music, refreshments, fun and information.

And be sure to stop in and post a 'Thank You' to a special senior (or 2 or 3...) on our "Thank a Senior" board. It's filling up fast and we'd like to have it full for October 1st. Even the playgroup children are participating - they've posted drawings of grandparents.

August 29 2012 - Ticket to Ride

The CASI Ticket to Ride - Seniors' Transit Tour was a great success! We visited the Old Fashioned Bakery, The Dawson Creek Library, The Dawson Creek Seniors' Park (the one with the exercise equipment), and Faking Sanity Cafe.

We try to incorporate social, arts/cultural, and recreational aspects into our tours but this time the recreational aspect was really appreciated! Bev McCallum, of One Fitness, volunteered to show our participants how to use the exercise equipment, thanks Bev. There were plenty of smiles and laughter and many seniors insisted that they would definately be back and use the equipment again.

The objective of the CASI Senior Transit Tours (or 'Ticket to Ride', as the press has dubbed them) is to help seniors discover all the places they can go and the thing they can do using local transit. Many seniors have told us that because of the tours, they now use the bus regularly.

A big thank you to BC Transit, the City of Dawson Creek, and the United Way of Northern BC for their support of the bus tours. It looks like we'll be doing this on a regular basis three times a year in the future.

Thanks also to our volunteers and to the businesses who gave us lovely draw prizes that were awarded to our participants: Kentucky Fried Chicken, Mr. Mikes, Boston Pizza, Cups Tea and Cake, Canada Safeway, Shoppers Drug Mart.

Thanks to our hosts - Dawson Creek Old Fashioned Bakery, The Dawson Creek Library, and Faking Sanity.

And thanks to Sue, who has been our wonderful and courteous driver since the beginning of these tours, and best wishes on her new location! Check out the photos below of the Ticket to Ride tour.

We're on FaceBook!

our youngest volunteer enjoys a pretzel at the Old Fashioned Bakery

Our youngest volunteer (He volunteers with his mom!) enjoying a fresh baked pretzel at the Old Fashioned Bakery!

Lunch at the Library

A beautiful day for a work out - at the Dawson Creek Seniors' Community Park!

Final stop - Faking Sanity Cafe for tea and cookies.

June 7 2012

Here's some important information for anyone out there who works with volunteers and who has to deal with Criminal Records Checks.

When your volunteer’s criminal records check come back with a “may or may not exist” checked off, what do you do? Do you decline to use that volunteer and say nothing because it’s just too awkward to tell them about the “may or may not” and you don’t want to embarrass them? In reality you could be causing them more harm by not telling them.

We show our volunteers the returned criminal record check form and explain that we would need to know what the “may or may not exist” refers to before we can assign them to assist seniors. Most are slightly embarrassed but we try to help them understand that we don’t ask to make them uncomfortable, but because we need to perform our due diligence in protecting our senior clients. Generally these incidents are minor and don’t in any way affect our volunteer’s ability to serve, but a recent incidence opened our eyes to how important knowing about the “may or may nots” can be to the volunteer themselves.

After talking to one of our pending volunteers about the results of her criminal record check, the volunteer spent a sleepless, anxious night followed by an early trip to the local RCMP office to find out what that “may or may not” could be. What she found out was that her identity had been stolen and she hadn’t even been aware of it. Now she and the RCMP are taking steps to locate and prosecute this thief. So next time you feel that flinch about addressing irregularities in criminal records checks, remember, you owe your volunteers the same honesty that you expect from them.

Comment from our volunteer:

"Out of all the record checks I’ve had done for jobs and volunteering over the years, nobody ever mentioned anything showing up at all....in the “MAY OR MAY NOT BE”

If it wasn’t for your honesty in approaching me about it, I still would not know and who knows if I would have ever found out.

Thanks to you, I am now aware of the situation and with the RCMP’s help can get it all cleared up and the person dealt with. Thank you soooo much! I very much appreciate you bringing it to my attention."

Volunteers are Vital!

May 12 2012

Seniors' Conference

The ladies from 'Exploring Art' created this lovely collage during the South Peace Seniors' Access Annual Forum on May 12. It was then put up for auction and Arleene had the winning bid! Then 'Exploring Art' donated the proceeds to the CASI... Project! Thank you - Kay Hartnell, Merigene Fuhriman, Ruth Veiner, Carla Hauber, Marg Fredrickson, and Ruth Wagar - the ladies who created the picture. And thank you Arleene for bidding on it!

April 20-22 2012

Dawson Creek Kiwanis Trade Show 2012

CASI Dawson Creek coordinator and volunteers manned a booth at the 2012 Kiwanis Trade Show back in April. For three days we offered information to the thousands of people who stream through the show. We were very fortunate to acquire a large corner booth where we could arrange our displays so people could come in out of the flow of traffic and speak to us in a less rushed manner. We found this made for much more satisfying networking with more people leaving their names and numbers to be contacted as volunteers or as clients.

Our Information displays showed the increase in volunteers and seniors over the last year and featured letters and testimonials as well as photos of our volunteers and seniors.

We promoted our ongoing fundraiser - the Treasured Chronicles DVDs - locally produced videos of Peace Region seniors telling stories of homesteading the area.

We were very pleased with the overwhelming support for the project, everyone said it was a much needed program and we were also pleased at how many people were already aware of CASI and its services.

Visitors entered our draw, which was won by EV Estey of Chetwynd, BC.

April 3, 2012

Linda Studley, Arleene Thorpe, and Miriam Hall.

Today we were honoured to receive a donation from Miriam Hall, on behalf of the Keith Hall Memorial Fund. Keith was an amazing person; an accomplished opera singer who settled with his family in Dawson Creek. Keith was passionate about people, he was a caring man who touched the lives of many with his positive, compassionate personality.

Keith loved to sing for seniors in the care homes and the seniors loved him for it. Keith passed away in 2008 and is sorely missed.

Miriam, Keith's widow, learned about CASI and decided that Keith would have liked to support a project that helps seniors stay independent.

The CASI Project greatly appreciates this show of support and confidence.

Keith Hall

March 15 2012

Thank You ARC Resources Ltd. for your generous $2000. donation to the CASI Project!

That's Community Action!

Project Coordinator Linda Studley, and Volunteer Coordinator Arleene Thorpe accept cheque for $2000 from ARC Resources Ltd. representative Christine MacLean. March 15 2012.

Feb 14 2012


Will there be a CASI in your town in the next three years?

Read the media release from the Province of BC for some good news for seniors province wide!

Feb 11 2012 - The Beans 'n Jeans Dance and Charity Auction Fundraiser

The Beans 'n Jeans Dance and Charity Auction was a
HUGE success thanks to our
fabulous volunteers and generous community support!

Our Sponsors:
(alphabetic order)

Action Industrial First Aid
All-West Heritage Glass Ltd

Aspol Motors
Astral Media
B & T Ceramics

Bing’s Furniture
Bob Clapp
Boston Pizza

Brown’s Chev Olds
Brown’s Social House

Buffalodale Enterprises Ltd
Bumper to Bumper
Busy Bee Signs & Graphics
Canada Safeway
Caribou Road Services

Central Mountain Air
Century 21
Chocolate Clover Scrapbook Supplies
Dairy Queen
Dave Lewis
Dave McGowan
Dawson Creek Co-op

Dawson Creek Daily News
Dawson Creek White Spot Restaurant
Diamond Willow Retreat
Domino Pizza
Encana Corporation
Encana Events Centre
Faking Sanity
Farmer’s Market
Fitness for Life
Flowers by Charene

Hillside Gardens
In Touch Massage
Jackie Laing

Jeannie Lindgren
Joe Ballantyne

Joe Bretti
Kal Tire
Kentucky Fried Chicken

Knockout Esthetics
Lake View Credit Union
Lawrence’s Meat
Linda Smith
M&M Meats
Melina Hamilton
Mind Body & Soul Massage
Mindy's Hair Studio
Mountainview Safety Services

Mr Mikes Steakhouse & Bar
Neil Shuman/Dawson Creek Canucks
Northern Janitorial Services
Northern Metalic Sales Ltd
Northern Safety Welding Supply
Northern Saw & Pump
Northland Machine Ltd
Olde Creek Store
Old Fashioned Bakery

Panago Pizza
Peace Country Automotive
Peace Country Toyota
Peace FM

Peace photoGraphics
Peace Sauna & Bodo Wellness
Petron Communications
Prestige Gifts & Trophies
Rene’s Barber Shop
Robelix Appliance & Lock and Key
Roland Triebel Jewellers Ltd

Ross Lindgren Trucking
Royal Bank of Canada
Shear Indulgence
Simple Pleasures
Smucker’s Food
Software Emporium
Sola's Bar & Grill
Stewart Mechanical
Stuie's Dinner
Swamp Donkey Oilfield Services

The Pantry
Three Monkeys
Terry Dechief

Tim Horton's
Top Floor Design
United Spring & Brakes

Weaver Bros Auction Ltd.

October 4 2011

October 4, 2011 - CASI's First Birthday Party!

Seniors, volunteers, and friends of CASI enjoyed live music, refreshments, prizes and fun at CASI's First Birthday Party!

Above: Jane Harper, Executive Director of South Peace Community Resources Society, gave an address and cut the cake.

A year to the day since our Grand Opening we opened the doors for a First Birthday Party. Over fifty people - seniors, clients, volunteers, contractors, and the general public, came to help us celebrate. SPCRS and SPSASS were both well represented and spoke to our friends about the CASI Project. Everyone was in agreement that it is an excellent project, providing much needed services, and should be continued into the future.

Listening to live music provided by local musician, Bill Studley (Bill entertained at our Grand Opening too!), enjoying a slice of birthday cake, attendees applauded as volunteers were honoured for their contribution with lovely gifts donated by local businesses.

Above: Our first volunteer, Matt Bains, with his volunteer appreciation award (Hot Chocolate Maker! Yum)

CASI Bus Tour July 26, 2011

On July 26th a Dawson Creek City bus picked up CASI seniors and took them on a tour of the city. Stops were made at M&M Meats and at the Old Fashioned Bakery where seniors were given grand tours and offered refreshments. We even had an unexpected and unscheduled visit from a celebrity - Super Grover came aboard to greet our passengers at the Art Gallery parking area. You never know who you'll meet when you take the Bus!

Then on to Sudeten Hall, where seniors were able to voice their concerns and kudos about the local bus system to Dawson Creek Mayor Mike Berniet and a representative of Peace Transit. M&M Meats generously made lunch for over 30 participants and a draw was held for various prizes donated by local businesses, including Simple Pleasures and Boston Pizza. A bus pass was won by one of the seniors who then passed it on to her young friendly visitor so she could more easily come to visit.

CASI believes that transportation is a key element to independence for seniors, particularly in the north. We were very pleased to offer 28 seniors an opportunity to experience 'riding the bus' and have already received assurances from several that they feel much more comfortable with the idea of taking the bus after participating in the tour.

Many thanks to the City of Dawson Creek and the Transit company, to Sudeten Hall for the use of the facility, to M&M and Old Fashioned Bakery, to our prize sponsors, to Flowers by Charene for the lovely centrepieces, to Seniors' Access Society for the volunteer assistance, (apologies if I left anyone out) and to our wonderful seniors and volunteers for taking part.

April 15 - 17 2011 - CASI at the Trade Show

We had a draw for a big basket of wonderful goodies donated by generous businesses and inviduals, sold Treasured Chronicles DVDs, and offered our new CASI Pins for a contribution to the 'Pin Pig', a piggy bank that accompanies our Pin display.

I was very pleased to note how many people, when asked "Have you heard about the CASI Project", answered that they had.

We had several people sign up to become volunteers and many people who work with seniors in some capacity took brochures with the intention of passing the information along. All in all, I believe our presence at the show was a very positive step for CASI.

CASI was pleased to have a presence at the 2011 Dawson Creek Kiwanis Trade Show on April 15 - 17. Thousands of people attended and we may not have spoken to them all but we sure spoke to a lot of them! People came forward to volunteer, hundreds took away brochures, and all were very pleased with the CASI mandate and agreed that seniors' independence was a very important issue.

This three day event would have been a gruelling schedule for just one person, but I was joined by 12 terrific volunteers who helped man the booth. All are staunch CASI Boosters and did the project proud!

Oct 4, 2010 - CASI Grande Opening

left to right: Jeannie Lindgren and Sharon Miller: SPSASS, Deanna Sudnik: SPCRS, Linda Studley: CASI Coordinator, Jane Harper and Brigitta Ratschker: SPCRS at the official "cutting of the cake".

A constant stream of visitors attended the Grand Opening between 10 am and 2 pm, asking questions, signing up for services, or to volunteer or provide services.

Sharon explains some of the volunteer opportunities to a visitor.

Above: video of the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony with MLA Blair Lekstrom

On October 4th, 2010 we launched the CASI project in Dawson Creek with a celebration in our new office in the Dawson Co-op Mall.

It's always a bit of a scramble getting a new project up and running and with any luck it will resemble a duck floating serenely across a lake - smooth and seemingly effortless above the water even though she's paddling for all she's worth under the surface!

We were very thrilled with the turn out and the great interest in the project. We set out sign in sheets for people who may want services, who could offer services, or could volunteer. At the end of the four hour event we had a good collection of names on all the sign in sheets.

We were pleased to see the media out in full force, with representatives from both local newspapers, North East News and Dawson Creek Daily News, as well as from CJDC TV and Shaw Cable. Above Bert Goulet of Shaw Cable interviews Linda Studley about the CASI Project.

We were also pleased to have a representative from the Peace River Regional District, Wayne Hiebert (left), and our MLA Blair Lekstrom, on hand for the celebration. Mr. Lekstrom went on to do an excellent job of cutting the ribbon. (see video)

Bill Studley entertained our visitors with old favourites and cowboy songs!

The stage is set for another fun CASI Event!

add visitor! (over 60 people that day!)

Add home grown local live music from Bill Studley (above) and from Ruth Wagar (right) and you have a good old fashioned sing-a-long!

Everyone had a great time singing along to old favourites.


CASI Dawson Creek is a joint project of the South Peace Seniors' Access Services Society
and the South Peace Community Resources Society

Funded by the Government of British Columbia and Managed by the United Way of the Lower Mainland


 #7 10200 8th Street, Dawson Creek, BC | In the Co-op Mall beside Sears| 250-782-2341