A Message from the Executive Director, Wendy King
Age does not protect you from love, but love, to some extent, love protects you from age.
– Jeanne Moreau
February is the month to celebrate all the love we have felt among our residents, between our seniors and our staff, and the outpouring of support we’ve received from our family, friends and community this past year – as we all wait and long to be together again.
With all the challenges of the pandemic combined with our expansion plans for the future, our leadership team felt it was important to come together to plan for the future, so we embarked on strategic planning sessions this past year. One of the changes that came from those sessions was a new slogan for Canterbury. We wanted something that truly embodied who we are. While we continue to deliver the Promise of Home, our new slogan speaks to how we all feel about what we’ve built at Canterbury: More than Just Four Walls.
In this month of love and friendship – never more have we felt like Canterbury is truly more than just four walls. The COVID-19 pandemic, has grown our friendships stronger, made unbreakable bonds, and solidified our fighting spirit as we all form a pact among staff, residents and families to keep each other safe at all costs. To do the right thing no matter how much it hurts our hearts.
The support from our family and friends who continue to keep their distance, is a sacrifice made out of love in this unprecedented time in our history. That love has penetrated our walls. We can feel it. And we appreciate it. There is no doubt that the Canterbury family stretches far beyond our physical walls, out into the community and into the homes of families, friends, even strangers. It’s the love for one another that is the safety net we are relying on to help us find our way out of the danger. You’ve shown your love through your absence, your thoughts and prayers, your cards, your donations and messages of kindness. We know you’re all counting on us to keep focused on the important work we need to do and all your support is allowing us to do just that.
This past November and December, Canterbury Foundation launched our first Annual Promise of Home Campaign and Online Auction. We were overwhelmed with the generosity of our donors. Our donor family has rallied when we needed it most, raising over $78,000 in funds! Please read ahead for highlights from the campaign to learn more about what your generous dollars are doing for Canterbury Foundation. We are grateful for every dollar raised through the loving hearts of all our donors.
We are only into February of this year, and already we have so much to celebrate. Our new building has opened its doors and welcomed some of our residents into new suites and spaces. Our new Cherub’s Café is about to open. It will provide that feeling of independence we all crave and give us something new to get excited about. Our renovation of the Court inside our current building has begun and will give rise to 53 new memory care spaces, end-of-life care, and a community outreach program for seniors living in the surrounding neighbourhoods. By the time our Capital Project is finished, Canterbury will have one of the best Senior Care Centres in the world. That is truly something we are proud of. But this project will continue to take all of us working together and it’s why we continue to expand our donor community and build more connected and inspired relationships with our families and private donors. We want everyone to feel like they can be part of supporting the current and future well-being of the seniors in our community.
In our second edition of Canterbury Gratitudes, you’ll find stories of love and hope from Clifford and Geraldine Nelson who found love at age 70, married and continue to give back to the place they call home at Canterbury; we introduce you to some of the new spaces in our now open expansion; we share an exciting new art installation project coming to Canterbury. Make sure you flip through to a delicious Valentine’s Day recipe from our very own Chef Ajay! I’m sure you’ll love it!
We hope you enjoy these stories and moments as we reflect on our past campaign and look forward to exciting changes and projects to come. We know the New Year will continue to bring some of the same struggles, but we remain confident in the strength of our staff and the resilience of our residents and families to continue to make Canterbury a safe, supportive and loving place for our most precious resource: our seniors, to thrive and find all the joy in their lives. While our doors remain closed, know that inside our walls we are making the very best of the time we have together. Inside Canterbury our residents are happy, Canterbury is bustling with life, friendships, laughter and a strong feeling of togetherness. We look forward to the day when we can open our doors and let our community and families inside, because we are more than just four walls, we’re a family.
With love and gratitude, stay strong.
Executive Director, Canterbury Foundation