By Gian Singh Kotli
Vancouver- Dr. Patrick McGowan, Director of Self Management Programs and Professor, Centre on Aging, University of Victoria, BC arranged a special workshop of experienced and trained volunteers of Self-Management Programs to share their experience of working within their community for raising awareness of self management skills for maintaining good health and improving their lifestyle. The workshop was held on May 11, in the Fine Arts Building of the University. This significant Program is run by the University of Victoria and funded by the Ministry of Health, BC. Jay Bains, who is coordinator for the entire B.C. province explained in detail that the purpose of organizing such workshops is to help the seniors with chronic illness to explore ways and means by making them aware about self management skills about their mental and physical conditions for living a healthy life.
To make this occasion more awarding Dr. Patrick McGowan, specially invited trained volunteer leaders of Self Management Programs from Punjabi speaking South-Asian community from Vancouver and also aboriginal community volunteers from Vancouver and other places. Raminder Pal Singh Kang, Gian Singh Kotli, Raminder Kaur, Harbinder Kaur Bains, Avtar Kaur Manak and Aboriginal community coordinator June along with other volunteer leaders, shared their vast experience of meeting and interacting with community members, particularly the seniors. More than 15 University students from different cities and provinces of Canada specially attended this workshop and were quite curious to know about the experience of running Self Management programs in the communities, challenges faced, development of ‘trust’ with the participants, implementation of process and facilitation of workshops and finally empowering the participants to learn new prevention and management skills to bring about positive changes in their life style. Almost all the speakers converged on the point that by interacting with seniors they can be brought around to pay more attention towards learning self management skills to improve their health. This interaction session was ended with question and answer session. Jay Bains (Jagdev Singh Bains) may be credited for arranging several such well managed workshops in various organizations and Senior Centers in almost all the cities of British Columbia. This time too he did not lag behind to make this program a successful event. Dr Patrick McGowan thanked all volunteers and participants for attending this event on behalf of the University.
Participants at the Self Management Skills workshop at University of Victoria on May 11, 2017