“This service was a 10/10”, says Peter. “It was very important to me. Just having somebody to talk to, someone that you trust.”
At the time Peter joined Nav-CARE he was in his late 80’s and living on a rural property outside of town with his wife. He struggled with several health issues that impacted his quality of life including a history of cancer, mobility issues, and a pace maker. Peter was taking a lot of medication that he found challenging to keep track of. Some of these medications caused additional health challenges, like increased bleeding, that were at times hard for him to manage. Living at home had become increasingly burdensome, especially living in a rural area where services were either not available or difficult to access.
As “pensioners” he felt overwhelmed at the financial implications of both him and his wife moving into supportive housing in a different community. Being a part of the Nav-CARE program for a year was “a great help for us”, explains Peter. “The volunteer navigator knew how to get the information we needed, she knew what she was doing. This is what stood out for me about being a part of Nav-CARE”.
Having someone come to his home to help him and his wife was what made this program so ideal for Peter.
“I could ask the neighbours for help but my needs were too personal”. With the volunteer navigator, Peter was able to open up about “different things”. “You could ask the volunteer navigator questions that you couldn’t go and ask the neighbours or friends about.”
For example, the volunteer navigator helped him and his wife explore other housing options since Peter worried about aging in a rural area with only one family member around to help. He understood the extra burden this put on his adult daughter who also had her own family and job to balance.
The volunteer navigator also helped Peter sort through his medications and the information sheets that come with each of them about possible side effects. She also suggested ways that Peter could build up his physical strength.
“Most times, she just came and spent time with us just see how we were feeling and what we were finding difficult”, says Peter. “I think she stayed longer than she was supposed to,” Peter chuckles, and proudly declares that he never cancelled an appointment while on the service.