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Empowering independence: A Look at ROSSS’ Programs and Services

(Featured Image: Attendees enjoy the Richmond Diners Club Luncheon held by ROSSS.)

By Melissa MacIsaac, ROSSS

As the calendar turns over to mark the beginning of a new year, the team at Rural Ottawa South Support Services (ROSSS) extends warm wishes for a Happy New Year to all. As we embark on this journey into 2024, it’s a time for reflection, resolutions, and a renewed commitment to our community. In the spirit of education and community engagement, we want to take this opportunity to shed light on the extensive range of programs and services that ROSSS provides to seniors and adults with disabilities in the rural areas of Ottawa South, spanning from Munster to Metcalfe.

At the core of our mission is the commitment to help seniors and adults with disabilities age gracefully in the comfort of their homes. To be eligible for our services, individuals must be 55 years of age or older or have a government recognition of a disability. ROSSS is a lifeline for many, and we pride ourselves on being a beacon of support for those who need it most.

One of our most recognized services is our transportation program, operating a fleet of seven vehicles, including two wheelchair-accessible options. This vital service ensures that our clients can access medical appointments, go shopping, visit friends and family, or attend other essential appointments. The simplicity of the process—calling ROSSS with five business days’ notice to book a ride—and the affordability of our rates make this program indispensable. With round trip fares starting at $11 for distances up to 30 kilometers within the City of Ottawa limits, our transportation services are not only economical but also reliable. We extend our reach beyond the city limits, providing transportation to areas such as Winchester or Kemptville at reasonable rates. Our drivers, hailed as unparalleled in their kindness, attentiveness, and support, contribute significantly to the success of this program.

ROSSS’ Meals on Wheels program is another cornerstone of our services, offering both fresh/hot and frozen meals delivered by local volunteers throughout the week. Collaborating with local partners, such as TimeSaver Foods for frozen meals and Manotick Place for fresh options, we ensure that our meals are not only delicious but also nutritious. Our commitment to affordability is reflected in our pricing, with frozen meals priced at $8.00 each and fresh meals at $8.75 each. To place an order or learn more, individuals can contact us at 613-692-4697 x 241 or via email at MOW@rosss.ca.

Addressing the social well-being of our community members is equally crucial, and ROSSS excels in providing diverse social programs. From luncheons and breakfasts to drop-in programs, pickleball, knitting groups, and fitness classes, our offerings cater to a spectrum of interests. These activities aim to foster connections among rural seniors and adults with disabilities, combating feelings of loneliness and isolation. While registration is required for some programs, the benefits are immeasurable, with entertainment, games, educational guests, and crafts creating a vibrant and inclusive atmosphere. For more information or to register, individuals can call 613-692-4697 x 224.

Recognizing the significant role caregivers play in our community, ROSSS offers caregiver support groups and respite services. Respite provides much-needed relief for family caregivers, encompassing personal care, laundry, shopping, light housekeeping, assistance with medications, supervision, and engaging activities. The caregiver support group, held in person on Tuesdays, provides a platform for group discussions, professional speakers, and support resources. To explore these services, individuals can call 613-692-4697 x 223.

For those who are physically frail or cognitively impaired, our Adult Day program is designed to assist participants in maintaining their maximum level of functioning, preventing premature institutionalization, and providing respite for caregivers. The program incorporates planned social, recreational, and physical activities, along with snacks and lunch.

Beyond these core programs, ROSSS offers additional services to cater to various needs. Footcare is provided both in our office and within the community by a registered footcare nurse. Friendly Visiting involves regular visits by compassionate volunteers to homebound clients, aiming to alleviate isolation and loneliness through friendship and support. Telephone Assurance ensures the well-being and security of vulnerable members of our community, with ROSSS volunteers making regular check-in wellness calls to clients.

Personal Support Services and Home Support Services round out our offerings, assisting clients with daily tasks of living, personal care, hygiene, light housekeeping, meal preparation, and laundry. These services collectively contribute to the overarching goal of enabling seniors and adults with disabilities to remain in their homes safely for as long as possible.

ROSSS is a comprehensive support network for the residents of rural Ottawa South, embodying the spirit of community care and empowerment. If you or someone you know could benefit from any of these programs and services, we encourage you to reach out to our office at 613-692-4697, visit us at 1096 Bridge Street, Manotick, or email us at info@rosss.ca. As we step into the new year, let us continue to build a stronger, more connected community together.