The Cortes Community Health Association’s (CCHA) Augmented Home Support Program (AHSP) provides minimal assistance to elderly people who might otherwise be forced to leave the island. So far, they have given 37 Cortes residents transportation to shopping and/or doctor; moved firewood; or light housekeeping. When needed, AHSP has provided some pre-cooked meals. This service is not a substitute for personal care provided by Island Health (like bathing, dressing changes or help with taking medication), but has been of great assistance to Cortes residents undergoing surgery or soon to be released from the hospital. The program’s funding challenges were such that CCHA actually contemplated terminating it last fall. Island Health will fund Cortes Island’s Augmented Home Support Program during 2020.
“After six years of pretty much constant effort and the generosity of a lot of people on the island, VIHA (Island Health) has finally agreed to finance this operation. They have granted us $24,500 for a year, while they work out the details of how they can put it on a sustaining basis,” says Ron Croda, the CCHA Director in charge of Augmented Home Support.
In their January 2020 newsletter, the Cortes Community Health Association acknowledged the great support it has received from the community:
“On numerous occasions when we were running out of money we called out to our community for help. And our community answered by providing fifty-six percent (56%) of our funding through individual donations and fundraisers. We are deeply grateful to all who have donated and offer you our heartfelt thanks!”
“The AHSP has also benefited from our Regional Directors Grant in Aid representing 25% of our funding and we thank Noba Anderson for all her help and support. BC Gaming Grants have provided 11% of our funding and an initial VIHA grant of 9% helped launch the program.”