Project SOS: Share Our Stories

Program
Location
Alberta
Type of Program
Social Connectedness
Wellness & Mental Health

With age comes experience and resilience. We invite you to share a story or two about a difficult time you faced and how you got through it. Your stories can help others who are facing difficult challenges. Family and Community Support Services (FCSS) is facilitating this opportunity for seniors to share their stories. Stories can be written by hand, typed, or submitted through a video telling your story vocally. We encourage photos to accompany submissions. Please call and discuss options for submitting videos.

Email submissions: familyresources@okotoks.ca

Learn more

This initiative launched October 2020 (for International Day of Older Persons) to engage seniors in the Foothills communities.  FCSS staff wanted to collect stories of resiliency to encourage others who were having a hard time with Covid/finances/family challenges, etc. We invited seniors to participate through social media, seniors centre and museum newsletters, public libraries, and the local newspapers. Response to the project has been great and we are starting to publish stories on www.okotoks.ca/sos.  Each week a “teaser”  facebook story with new photos of the featured seniors and their story titles leads people to the website.  We plan to wrap up the collection just before Seniors Week in June and publish the collected stories in a bound book. I thought this might be a nice CORE newsletter feature.

Some seniors are writing and submitting their own stories while others are “interviewed” by staff member some of our seniors residences.  In the latter case, there seem to be benefits to both interviewers and participants. 

An interviewer wrote:

The seniors are coming to me now asking to tell their story which is pretty cool. I absolutely love listening to them and sharing their lives- it is so inspiring- Covid is nothing compared to what they have been through- although it is definitely taking its toll on their mental health- so for them to focus on the positive is such a great way to spend time with me and get a little 1-1 TLC-  remember what makes them who they are and where they came from. I have a great job.