Coming together to stop elder abuse

submitted by Audrey Glasier

Coronation’s Elder Angels are lighting up the night all around Coronation in planters, on street corners and in people’s yards, bringing the issue of elder abuse to the attention of our community.

The angels were designed locally and custom-made by Kastiel Welding of Panoka and will be numbered for authenticity. The metal ornaments’ design has a very symbolic meaning.

The angel’s halo represents wrapping your head around abuse.  The body is the abuse and the wings represent giving a piece of your heart. The three boughs stand for family, friends and community coming together to stop abuse.

With our aging population abuse is on the rise, even in rural Alberta. The more awareness we raise, the sooner those who are suffering in silence and who are too afraid or ashamed, may come forward.

Elder Angels came out of a New Horizon grant that was obtained through the Coronation Community Silver Club in response to the rising occurrence of elder abuse.

The club spent a year holding workshops, having speakers and informal training session within the community as well as a symposium last fall, for the general public and healthcare professionals.

The Elder Angels have even come to the attention of Lori Therrien with Alberta Elder Abuse Awareness.  She would like take them to the Deputy Minister for withe possibility of using them throughout the province.

The eight angels are on display in the rock planters on Royal Street and will be on display for the winter season with the possibility of extending that into the summer months.

The angels are supported by three boughs and a solar light will keep her shining through the night.

The intent behind the Elder Angel is that they will become an engine used to spread the word about elder abuse and bringing hope to those who are silent.

Students from the Coronation Outreach school  helped assemble the angels will be taking care of the angels.

If you suspect someone is being mistreated by family, friends or an acquaintance please reach out and report abuse.

Financial and emotional abuse are the most common forms but self-neglect, physical and sexual abuse are also happening.

If the person is in imminent danger please call 911 or the family violence hotline 310-1818 to report.

If you would like to support this campaign, you can call 403-578-4063 or 403-578-2727. A huge thank you to our friends at the outreach school for helping assemble the Elder Angels and keeping them safe.

Coronation’s outreach students, from the left: Cole Severin, Alexis Purdy, Braydon Chambers and Lucas Riley helped set up the Elder Angels along Royal Street in Coronation on Wed., Feb 10.  The Elder Angels are lit with solar lights and will be on display for the winter season.  ECA Review/Y.Thulien

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