CRNs in the Community: Featured WEAAD Events 2024

Science World lit up purple in False Creek Vancouver

June 15th is World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) and it is the highlight of the year for us at BC CRNs. All throughout the month, events and workshops rolled out, painting the province purple with flowers, signs, banners, lights and parades. Many of our civil and provincial government officials also acknowledged the day, making public WEAAD statements and an official proclamation reading in Parliament in Victoria. 

We can’t possibly list all the events that went on throughout the month of June but we want to send a huge THANK YOU to all the CRNs and individuals that sent in pictures and reports and tagged us on Facebook. It was our biggest and best so far. Here are some highlights from the events around the province this month: 


Parliamentary Secretary for Seniors’ Services, Harwinder Sandhu, issued a statement in recognition of WEAAD, June 15th, 2024. The statement included a message on the importance of seniors and the fiscal commitment to the BC CRNs for the advocacy and education of the prevention of abuse, neglect and self-neglect of older adults. Also included were links to various sources of information and service providers. 

North West & Central Interior

The Prince George CRN was honoured to have Mayor Simon Yu hoist the WEAAD flag and read the official proclamation at the City Hall. City councillors, community partners and event attendees all gathered there to kick off the day. The official ceremony was followed by a lunch and learn event at the Civic Centre, where other local business and service providers also delivered presentations. Thanks to community partners: all five chapters of Prince George Council of Seniors, Advisory Committee of Seniors, Punjabi Seniors Society, Multicultural and Immigrant Services Society and Niwikowin Metis Family Services. 

photo credit: Tommy Osborne, CKPGToday. In the picture: Regional Mentor Anjali Marshall (lower right), PG Mayor, Simon Yu (top row, 3rd from right)

Kitimat CRN set up a table at the Day Shelter to distribute resource materials and connect with community members about elder abuse. They also had purple irises and cupcakes for visitors throughout the day.  

Houston CRN hosted a lunch-and-learn where they set up a table of information and resource materials to distribute to local seniors. Event posters were put up in advance of the event and a large purple petunia hanging basket was acquired as a door prize to draw in attendees. Thanks to the host agency, Houston Link to Learning, and community partner, The Plaza, for advertising and event space. 

Smithers CRN: Organized an Awareness Walk parade with the high school band through the main street of town, ending with speakers and refreshments in Bovil Square. Flyers and posters were sent out to the local community, neighbouring towns and indigenous communities. Participants created and carried colourful signs with awareness slogans and purple pennant flags. BC Premier David Eby was invited to hear community concerns and receive a petition with 500 signatures supporting the need for assisted living for seniors. Community partners present: city councillors and representatives from local service agencies. 

Cariboo / Chilcotin

Quesnel CRN hosted a WEAAD table during a community fair to bring awareness to elder abuse. Light, healthy snacks were served to more than 50 people who visited the display, and 40 resource and referral information and materials packages were distributed. Thanks to community partner: Better at Home. 

Williams Lake CRN hosted a WEAAD Food Sustainability (for seniors) information and networking fair where they set up a resource referral table alongside 13 other community partners and service providers. Approximately 60 people came through the event and many of them went home with one of the 50 free tomato plants the CRN had acquired from the gardening club at the Lake City Secondary school for the occasion. This was part of a larger initiative to help connect seniors to the Good Food Box and other resources for support and information to grow their own food, connect them with ways to share grocery orders to save money on food bills, or places around the area that offer free meals. The local newspaper was on site to report on the event and later in the evening, Williams Lake City Hall was lit up purple in honour of the day. 


East Kootenay

Golden CRN hosted a WEAAD High Tea and luncheon event to spread awareness and distribute resource referral materials to local community members. The event also served as a checkpoint for many seniors living alone in the surrounding area. Also in attendance were representatives of local service providers. Thanks to community event partners: Golden Seniors Society, Golden Restorative Justice Program, RCMP, Golden Caregivers Support Group and volunteers from the Food Bank and Family Centre. 

West Kootenay / Boundary

Boundary CRN hosted a Seniors Wellness Fair in the curling rink in Grand Forks. Their goal with this new location was to provide a more accessible venue to allow more seniors and vulnerable adults to attend. The CRN worked with community partners: Better at Home, RCMP, Grand Forks Seniors Centre, Fire and Rescue and BC Paramedics, to raise awareness for elder abuse, neglect and self-neglect.  

Nelson CRN volunteers toughed it out at a table in front of the Kootenay Country Co-op through wind, rain and thunder – but that did not deter or dampen the spirits of the volunteers and locals who stopped by! Regional Mentor Heather von Ilberg reports: “We saw tons of folks, gave away [referral resource] materials, had some hard conversations and gave away gift cards! We were very well received!”.

Kaslo CRN partnered with Kaslo Seniors Coordinator Elizabeth Brandrick and the team at Kaslo Community Services to assemble 40 CRN zip-lock bags filled with referral and resource materials and deliver them with lunches to seniors the day before WEAAD.  Volunteers then hosted a booth at the Saturday Market to mark the day. In preparation for these big events, they had launched a poster campaign around town earlier in the month and dropped off resource materials to the Kaslo Food Hub, Kaslo Public Library and Lardeau Valley Community Hall in Meadow Creek for distribution to offer elder abuse awareness and prevention information to as many community members as possible.  

Salmo CRN hosted a WE-hAAD to Gather event. Volunteers hosted a lunch of cheeseburgers and dessert for over 110 seniors, and made deliveries to an additional 47. The event had a live band, games and presentations by the CRN and service providers: Salmo Hospice, Nav-CARE and the local paramedics. Fortis BC generously donated enough cooling scarves for all attendees. 

Thompson / Nicola / Fraser 

The Kamloops CRN, in partnership with Mt Paul Food Centre and Better at Home, sets aside a week of events at various locations to help increase their presence and promote WEAAD in the community. They promote available workshops, distribute referral resources and look for opportunities to increase local service capacities. Thanks to community partners: CFJCTV-7, B-100 and Castanet Kamloops for publicity and advertising. 

Ashcroft Cache Creek CRN hosted a WEAAD lunch for local seniors to facilitate a social networking event, along with some resources materials about the prevention of abuse. This event provided an opportunity for the seniors to check in with each other and reduce the social isolation many of them face in a rural setting. 


The South Okanagan CRN teamed up with the Osoyoos Credit Union to put on a barbeque to raise awareness for elder abuse in the community. It was so successful and well attended that they sold out of burgers. BC CRNs resource materials and information were handed out to all attendees and many people passing by. 

North Shore / Sea to Sky 

Sea to Sky CRN hosted a WEAAD information and awareness table at the mid-month seniors dinner at the Westwinds Senior Housing in Squamish. Dinner guests were keen to engage in conversation and each visitor to the table left with information brochures and other resource referral materials. Plans to set up an information table at all future dinners are underway. 

North Shore CRN had an exhibit at the North Shore Seniors’ Health Expo in West Vancouver. Lorna Harding, North Shore CRN Coordinator, and Sarah Gibson, North Shore/Sea to Sky Regional Mentor, were there to take care of sharing resource and referral  information for the prevention of adult abuse, neglect and self-neglect. Keynote speaker at the Expo was Dan Levitt, the BC Seniors’ Advocate. 

Fraser West

Maple Ridge/Pitt Meadows/Katzie CRN hosted a WEAAD table at the CEED Centre Block Party. Organizers and volunteers arrived bedecked in purple: hats, shirts, jackets, and accessories. The CRN table was loaded with resource information materials, purple balloon irises and even purple churros to give away thanks to community partner Los Churros BC! The CRN volunteers had also gathered over 200 iris bulbs earlier this year and planted them around the community in honour of the upcoming celebration. Special thanks to all the amazing volunteers who prepared potted purple irises a day ahead and transported them to the event as giveaways to attendees (Heather, Bernie, Brian, Ian, and Betty). Balloon irises and entertainment by Mango the Monkey provided by Jim and Donna Milburn. 


Also in Maple Ridge, the monthly coffee club had a presentation about WEAAD at community partner restaurant, Home Restaurant. Purple balloon flowers decorated the tables and resource information about adult abuse prevention were provided to each attendee. 

New Westminster CRN: Sponsored the Seniors Services Society’s age-friendly Walk of Ages to raise awareness of the housing challenges of low-income and isolated seniors. Other community partners include BC Housing, Inn at the Quay, Kintec, New Westminster Record, Fraser Discovery Centre and Bria Communities. Breakfast was provided by the New Westminster Legion Branch #2.

The Tri-Cities CRN hosted the Coquitlam RCMP for a Frauds & Scams presentation in recognition of WEAAD. A presentation on elder abuse prevention and ageism followed the RCMP talk. 

The Port Coquitlam CRN hosted its first event as a newly minted CRN. The two Co-Coordinators hosted a WEAAD table at the Wilson Centre’s Seniors’ Health and Wellness Fair in early June, sharing information and referral resources for the prevention of abuse, neglect and self-neglect. The event was well attended and the two Coordinators were able to engage with many visitors. 

Sunshine Coast

The Sunshine Coast CRN had a terrific visit at the Pender Harbour Health Centre with a WEAAD banner and table. Many visitors came by the table to talk and ask questions about the signs of adult abuse, neglect and self-neglect: patients, staff, centre manager, volunteers, BAH and the centre dentist. They handed out lots of print referral resource materials. Pictured are (center) Vicki Dobbyn CRN Coordinator, (left) Regional Mentor April Struthers and (right) Marlene Cymbalist, Seniors Programs.

South Vancouver Island

Saanich Peninsula CRN has been busy with several events leading up to WEAAD. In early June they participated at the Community Attachment to Resources and Engagement Fair where they promoted an upcoming WEAAD workshop and abuse prevention by distributing referral resources and materials in purple bags. Coordinator Anna Hudson and volunteers also took advantage of the opportunity to network with the 60 participating vendors and service providers, introducing BC CRNs and handing out referral materials. On the 15th, the Regional Mentor, Cari Taylor, presented the See Something, Say Something workshop to attendees at host agency, the SHOAL Centre where she introduced the BC CRNs and our mandate to prevent abuse, neglect and self-neglect. Participants were able to engage in dialogue and ask questions. Thanks to community partners: the SHOAL Centre for the meeting space and promoting the event in their Tidelines Newsletter and Seaside Magazine for promoting the event in the June edition. 


Stay in the know by signing up for our Newsletter, watch the calendar on the Events page, or follow us on Facebook. Watch on-demand all our past workshops posted on our website here.

Explore our website to learn more about BC CRN or connect with your local CRN for more information or resources. 



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