In response to residents watching their friends and neighbors forced out of their communities into large, unfamiliar urban areas, a small group of rural seniors decided to make a difference by developing and designing an Aging in Community Village on their own terms. It was through their efforts that the Rural Way model was developed.
“If seniors have to retire outside of their community, they are giving up a lot – and so is their community. They lose their neighbourhood and their ties with friends. The community loses their wisdom and the value they add to the community. Rural Alberta seniors want to age where they live – in the communities they know and love.” said Lori Kovacs, CDS Executive Director.
The Rural Way works on the basis of engaged volunteers and involvement by seniors. “We believe that seniors need to be at the planning table and have a hand in designing their futures,” Kovacs elaborated.
“The big difference with The Rural Way,” noted Roger Thompson, Chair of CDS, “is that it’s about what we can do with seniors and not just for them!”
The Rural Way supports and builds on relevant resources and strengths that already exist in the community. This serves as catalyst for residents to come together, to identify issues facing their communities and to create local solutions that will lead to successful and sustainable futures.
CDS is dedicated to building the capacity of rural leaders and facilitating the development of collaborative partnerships to take on community development initiatives that will enhance their lives and shape their future. CDS is a registered charity and is located in Calgary.
To learn more, please visit www.theruralway.ca.