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Fortunate to have supportive housing in RR

Dear editor,
I recently visited Rainy River to spend time with my brother and sister who reside at Riverview Manor. Joan and Gord were raised in Rainy River and have always called it “home”. They both carry challenges that affect their ability to live independently in their later years.
I just wanted the residents of Rainy River to know how fortunate they are to have a supportive housing environment in their community. Support staff are in place at Riverview during the daylight and evening hours, offering assistance with bathing, dressing, house-keeping, medication, minor treatments, and many, many other tasks that go above and beyond expectations - in a word, they are “priceless”! Not only do they look after the resident’s physical needs but they also look after their need for socialization, hosting coffee gatherings, Saturday lunches, monthly Sunday dinners, Monday bingos, etc. Melanie Murray visits regularly for foot care - DSSAB and other community staff provide seminars on items related to health and safety. The building is spotless and maintained with perfection thanks to DSSAB Housing staff, Sandra Weir and Michelle Shute, and the incredible Theresa Redford and other maintenance staff, including Rick Bliss who led a successful renovation to accommodate residents with physical disabilities.
Not only that but the small community of Rainy River offers a variety of services for residents, some right across the street at the medical clinic which includes dedicated physicians, a nurse practitioner, visiting dietician, and other caring staff. A Senior Centre at the wonderful old railroad station offers many activities for the residents, the Health Unit staff are available for services, Florence at Home Support arranges Meals on Wheels five days per week, if needed, and hair-dressing can be provided right in the home. How wonderful is that!
Rainy River is truly a community which prides itself on serving its seniors. I have had the opportunity to meet with politicians and service providers regarding supportive housing/assisted living in my new home province of British Columbia and I can say with certainty that Mayor Deb Ewald and Council had tremendous foresight to identify a need for senior supportive housing and, fortunately, the firm conviction to fight for your community. Well done!
Riverview Manor has been a godsend for our family. Thank you to the Mayor and Council, the Housing Department and Board of the Rainy River District Social Services Administration Board (DSSAB), and the Northern Independent Living Services for establishing supportive housing in Rainy River, and thank you to the staff, volunteers and families for enabling seniors to age in their home.

–With sincere appreciation,
Donna Dittaro