After nearly 20 years of standing strong for the Golden Seniors Society, it was time for the organization’s centre to get an upgrade.
“The Seniors Centre opened up in 1997, and not much has been done with the interior of the building since then, other than a coat of paint,” said Irene Gray, Seniors Society President.
They decided it was time, so Gray started looking into granting opportunities, and was successful in securing three. The Government of Canada’s New Horizons for Seniors Program was the first to provide project funding to upgrade the building. This made it possible for the centre to upgrade the front doors.
“They’re automatic now, and the members just love it,” said Gray.
The next two came from Columbia Basin Trust, and covered interior painting, and new toilets to upgrade the washrooms.
“So I figured if we were already doing that, we should add new vanities. Then we upgraded the handicap washroom,” said Gray.
The facility’s guests are primarily seniors, some with health issues, and the handicap washroom was without an alarm on the interior. One has now been installed that both makes a sound, and lights up, alerting people outside in the event of a medical problem.
“We also changed the door handle from a knob to a handle. People with arthritis had difficulty turning the knob,” added Gray. All of the washrooms have also been fitted with new vanities.
And on top of that, the Town chipped in to add two small ramps on the side, then Valley Blacktop took it one step further and blacktopped both ramps all the way down to the road, making access much easier.
The revamped centre has already reopened, with some of the regular weekly activities already resumed. But the official grand opening is on hold until the summer is over.
“It looks so great in there, I can’t wait for people to see it,” said Gray.
“Everyone worked so well together, both the contractors and all of the volunteers. We managed to get most of it done in just two weeks.”
The actual grand opening is scheduled for the afternoon of Sept. 17, and will include music, games, mingling, a ribbon cutting, and of course some refreshments and goodies.
“I just can’t thank everyone enough, it all came together so well,” said Gray. And the list of thanks is a long one, including: the Government of Canada’s New Horizons for Seniors Program, CBT, Golden Installations, Selkirk Glass, Wendell Johnston Painting, Kardash Plumbing, Columbia Cabinets, Nex Cleaning, the Town of Golden, Overwaitea, Valley Blacktop, Leigan Enterprises, the Magnusson family, and the many volunteers.”