Seniors’ Column

This week's column looks at support groups in a rural setting.

The overall purpose of a support group, whether it be large or small, is to help reinforce the importance of bringing together individuals who network in their effort to meet common goals.

There have been times during the close to 20 years since I moved to Nakusp, when I have paused to reflect on how fortunate I was to have had the opportunity to locate within a supportive and knowledgeable community of friends and neighbours who share similar interests to my own.

Having just returned home following an enjoyable family reunion on Vancouver Island, it quickly became evident that many of the rapid changes within society are taking place regardless of one’s residential location.

This points to the importance of being able to reach out to others in whatever way suits each individual, in order to aspire to obtain updated and useful community information, inspiration and, in some cases, even solace.

I could not help but notice the cultural and attitudinal differences that had occurred over the years between those who have remained in touch with traditional human values laced with compassion and caring, and those who work and reside within rapidly developing larger centres such as those I took note of throughout my travels.

These individuals seem to have moved beyond what I consider to be a point of safety when it comes to selecting healthy consumer choices such as those that still exist within our own area.

I for one have been reminded that it is essential prior to entering the highly charged arena of life such as that which we experience in the midst of crowded shopping centres or even busy airports when travelling. It is wise that we take steps to ensure that we aim to protect out health and avoid getting lost in the midst of unfamiliar environments.

Exhaustion and sleeplessness can often lead to a lack of concentration even after our having had a full night’s sleep. Health challenges can sometimes lead toward finding little or no available time to take care of ourselves properly.

The result can lead to an unwelcome increase in the area of colds, flu or other illnesses as frequently pointed out by those engaged in the promotion and provision of a wide range of health-related programs and services.

It is particularly wise on the part of elders to work toward becoming informed of any potential or physical dangers we might possibly face, if one steps out beyond the safety zone of familiarity.

For more details concerning the unmet needs we might face if not appropriately advised and cautioned about the importance of preparing in advance, check with a trained health practitioner or family physician prior to your leaving on your trip.


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