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June 25, 2003
For immediate release

Seniors Directory to be Published

Health and Social Services

The Prince Edward Island Health and Social Services system and the Atlantic Seniors Health Promotion Network-PEI (ASHPN) today announced plans to assist Island seniors to more easily access information about provincial and federal government programs and services.

ASHPN-PEI is preparing to publish a Seniors Directory, to be available by mid-September, 2003. The directory will give an overview of federal and provincial government programs and services for seniors and will contain a comprehensive listing of seniors organizations and other information pertinent to seniors in Prince Edward Island communities.

"This directory will provide up-to-date information in an easy to access manner," said Dr. Bernice Bell, chair of the Steering Committee which guides ASHPN-PEI. "There are many services available for seniors, and it is important that Island seniors can find those services when they are needed. I want to thank the provincial Department of Health and Social Services and Health Canada for their assistance in helping us develop this directory."

The Atlantic Seniors Health Promotion Network of Prince Edward Island was formed in March 2002 to strengthen networks in which Island seniors support each other and work together on common issues. The Network has recently completed a project called The Voice of Older Adults: Influencing Public Policy, which included a policy development workshop. The group also held workshops in each of the four Health Regions, to explore means to enhance the capacity of seniors/seniors organizations to influence public policy.

"I want to congratulate the Network for working to develop this new guide for seniors," said Health and Social Services Minister Jamie Ballem. "June is Seniors Month, and it is important that we recognize the many contributions and the vital role that seniors play in our society. This project, which is being spearheaded by an active seniors network, is a prime example. The guide will help Island seniors navigate the sometimes confusing maze of government programs and services and will help seniors find the most appropriate contact in the most efficient manner. It is a great project, which we are pleased to support."

Members of the ASHPN-PEI steering committee include Dr. Bell as Steering Committee chair and vice-chair of the province's Seniors Advisory Council; Ian MacDonald, chair of the Atlantic Seniors Health Promotion Network; Anna Duffy, president of the P.E.I. Senior Citizens Federation; Eileen Trainor, representative of the Seniors Advisory Committee; Bill MacDonald, president of the Charlottetown Branch of the Federal Superannuates National Association; Priscilla Ykelenstam representing Local 19 of the P.E.I. Union of Public Sector Employees; and Pat Malone, member-at-large. Don LeClair has been engaged as the project coordinator for the Seniors Directory.

ASHPN-PEI hopes to have the Seniors Directory available in September 2003 at Access PEI locations, local churches, drug stores, banks and other financial institutions, seniors clubs and online on the provincial government website.

Media Contact: Connie McNeill
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