COVID-19 – Resources

With social distancing and self isolation recommendations in place, we want to ensure our members and the community receive the support they need, have access to credible news, and access to online arts, culture and lifelong learning while at home.

Our staff complied a list of available resources, and will be updating this list as more services and programs become available! Check back often!


COVID-19 Updates:

Updated COVID-19 symptoms (May 25, 2020) from the Ontario Ministry of Health

City of Toronto
Ontario Ministry of Health
Public Health Ontario
Health Canada

Public Health Ontario has developed resources to support with the outbreak of COVID-19:
How to self-monitor
How to self-isolate
Self-isolation – Guide for caregivers, household members and close contacts


Grocery/Food Resources and Support Services:

Friendly Neighbour Hotline Program – 1-855-581-9580 (Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm) – Organized by University Health Network and OpenLab, volunteers can help pick up essentials like groceries and household items. This services is available to Toronto seniors living in low-income housing. Available in 180 languages, including Russian. Can order groceries online with their order form on their website. Program flyer

UJA COVID-19 Relief Hotline – 416-621-5676 – Assistance with groceries and essential supplies as needed. Individuals are connected with a community volunteer and/or donor to assist. You can also email Ryla Braemer at rbraemer@ujafed.org

The City of Toronto, Canadian Red Cross, and United Way Greater Toronto are providing food hamper delivery to seniors over 70 and others in need who are unable to leave their homes. Call 1-833-204-9952 to register for a delivery. This is a free service, no cost for groceries or delivery. Eligibility criteria are: You are a Toronto resident and your postal code begins with M; You are self isolated because of your recent travel outside of Canada; You had contact with someone who was diagnosed with COVID-19; You exhibit symptoms of acute respiratory infection (ARI); You live alone and have no-one who can assist you with grocery shopping; You have temporary or permanent physical or mental disability; You can not access any local food bank for any of above-mentioned reason; You are 70+ years old.

SPRINT Senior Care – The organization has a COVID-19 Community Response Team that can assist with grocery delivery, security and wellness checks, and more. View the flyer for more information. 416-481-0669, ext. 1225

Lumacare – 416-398-5511 – Call for COVID-19 emergency response kits, and the ability to delivery food and essentials for older adults living in North York.

Toronto Seniors Helpline – 416-217-2077 – This service is for a seniors that could benefit from community supports, such a transportation, crisis services, care at home, such as nursing and personal support, supportive counselling over the phone, and caregiver resources and support. Calls are answered 365 days a year with interpretation available in 100+ languages. Monday-Friday 9am-8pm, Saturday-Sunday 9am-6pm.

Jewish Youth Network – A team of volunteers offer assistance to isolated individuals in the GTA with critical errands, kosher food, supplies, phone calls and prayers. Fill out their online form and a volunteer will be in touch with you.

Food Resources During COVID-19 (The 519) – The 519 put together a great list of food resources including food banks, drop-in centres, locations for free meals, and more, including free takeaway meals at their location at 519 Church St. in Toronto.

Good Neighbour Project GTA – Providing service of grocery deliver (from an online order or food bank) in Toronto and the GTA (including York Region). Call within 2-3 days of your pick-up time to be connected with a volunteer to pick-up and deliver your groceries. The volunteer will call you to discuss a plan for drop off. Note your preferred language and they will try to match you with a volunteer that speaks your preferred language. 647-873-2230

The Stop Foodbank – Can receive a box of food of food on Monday or Friday. Typically contains 2 weeks worth of food. 416-652-7867 ext. 243. Must be picked up. Can coordinate with Good Neighbour Project (647-873-2230) to arrange a volunteer to pick it up.

Food Banks – a list of food banks in/near York Centre can be found HERE.

North York Toronto Health Partners – providing support for seniors who are isolated and newly discharged patients including transportation to medical appointments; telephone security and wellness checks; meals, grocery and comfort package delivery; pharmacy delivery; personal support, home making and laundry services; social work and counselling services; care coordination; and behavioural consultation for adults with responsive behaviours. Please note some services require co-pay. Please call 416-447-5200.


Grocery Delivery Services:

Cataldi Fresh Market (Woodbridge, ON) – offering curbside pickup and delivery options with a minimum purchase of $50. 905-605-5565
Grocery Gateway – Longos (Vaughan, ON) offers online and call (905-564-8778 or 1-877-447-8778) grocery ordering options though Grocery Gateway
Instacart
PC Express
Cornershop
Walmart
Loblaws
Uber Eats
InABuggy
MealFix – prepared meal delivery service in Toronto and the GTA
Bag-Half-Full – a free grocery delivery service in the GTA. There is no delivery or service fee. You can pay for your groceries via e-transfer, cash or cheque. For more information, visit their website.
*Please note some grocery delivery services are experiencing delays and long wait times.


Meals on Wheels:

Bernard Betel Centre – kosher – 416-225-2112, ext. 185 or ext. 134
Circle of Care – kosher – 416-635-2860
CHATS – non-kosher – 905-713-6596, ext. 7021
Lumacare – non-kosher – 416-398-5519
Healthy Now Seniors Meals – non-kosher in Newmarket and Aurora – 647-210-0047
Senior Persons Living Connected – non-kosher – 416-493-3333


Call Lines:

211 – Canada’s primary source of information on government and community based health and social services 24/7. Dial 2-1-1 or visit 211.ca to connect to community services. Available in over 150 languages.

TeleHealth Ontario – 1-866-797-000 – Fast, free medical advice 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. In an emergency, do not call TeleHealth, call 911 right away.

Toronto Public Health Hotline – 416-388-7600 – Monday-Friday 8:30am-8pm, Saturday-Sunday 10m-6pm. Translation available in many languages. Toronto Public Health eChat is a free, confidential and anonymous online service for Toronto residents. Chat online with a Public Health Nurse about various topics including senior health, healthy eating, mental health promotion, chronic disease and injury prevention, substance about and more.

Toronto Seniors Helpline – 416-217-2077 – This service is for a seniors that could benefit from community supports, such a transportation, crisis services, care at home, such as nursing and personal support, supportive counselling over the phone, and caregiver resources and support. Calls are answered 365 days a year with interpretation available in 100+ languages. Monday-Friday 9am-8pm, Saturday-Sunday 9am-6pm.

Sunshine Friendly Chatline – offered by Sunshine Centre for Seniors, if you are feeling lonely or just want someone to chat with for  a while, give them a call at 647-847-9853. The Chatline is open Monday-Friday from 9am-3pm. Please note, this is not a crisis line. If you are in need of crisis support, please call the Toronto Seniors Crisis Line at 416-217-2077

A Friendly Voice – 1-855-892-9992 – a phone line available to seniors in Ontario who are 55+ and who are experiencing loneliness/sadness or just simply need a little pick-me-up. Give us a call today, we’d love to hear from you! Not sure if our service is for you? Give us a call and ask some questions, we are happy to answer them! Not a counselling service, distress, a referral service, or crisis line nor emergency service.

Seniors Safety Line – 1-866-299-1011 – provides contact and referral information for local agencies across the province that can assist in cases of elder abuse. Trained counsellors also provide safety planning and supportive counseling for older adults who are being abused or at-risk of abuse. Family members and service providers can also call for information about community services. 24/7

Victim Services Toronto – 416-808-7066

Victim Services York Region – 905-953-5363

Silver Connect – Student run organization. Lively conversations through video and phone calls between student volunteers and the seniors of the community. To schedule a call send them an email. Visit their website for more information.


Foot Care

If you require urgent foot care, The College of Chiropodists of Ontario has a list of Urgent Care Providers in Ontario. Other local foot care clinics have re-opened. A list can be found HERE.

Bereavement Services

Circle of Care is offering a FREE virtual bereavement support group starting Wednesday, June 17 at 1:30 pm. To register contact Charlotte at 416-635-2900 x271 and ckoven@circleofcare.com. See their flyer for more information.


Technology

Cyber-Seniors – offering various online seminars (via Zoom) and pre-recorded sessions on YouTube for older adults in Canada and the US on topics such as joining Facebook, how to join a Zoom meeting, video calling Skype, How to use YouTube, how to set up and use online banking, ordering groceries online, accessing podcasts, and more. Also offer one-on-one sessions by phone and FaceTime.


Mental Health, Crisis, Housing, and Shelter Resources:

Mental Health Services – If you need assistance, please contact CMHA, CAMH, Canadian Coalition for Seniors’ Mental Health, Mood Disorders Society of Canada.

Crisis Services Canada – 1-833-456-4566 or 416-915-4566 – Call, text or chat online for support to anyone concerned about suicide, suffering a loss, and more. Available 24/7/365

Toronto Seniors Helpline – 416-217-2077 – This service is for a seniors that could benefit from community supports, such a transportation, crisis services, care at home, such as nursing and personal support, supportive counselling over the phone, and caregiver resources and support. Calls are answered 365 days a year with interpretation available in 100+ languages. Monday-Friday 9am-8pm, Saturday-Sunday 9am-6pm.

Mental Health, Housing & Newcomer Supports Resource Page (The 519) – The 519 put together a great list of resources including shelters, housing, drop-in centres, mental health support, crisis and information services, and more.

Shelter, Support and Housing Administration (City of Toronto) – Provided a Shelter Services – Frequently Asked Questions and Resources document, or you can also visit their website for more information.

ShelterSafe.ca – An online resources to help women seeking safety from violence and abuse. The clickable map serves as a fast resource to connect to the nearest shelter.

Victim Services Toronto – 416-808-7066

Victim Services York Region – 905-953-5363


Other Important Resources:

Free Pet Food – St. James Town Community Corner is offering free pet food (dry dog and cat food) for those in need. Please call 426-964-6657 or email info@stjamestown.org. For more information, please see their flyer.

CIJA COVID-19 Resource Guide – CIJA has prevpared a COVID-19 resource guide for the community by province, with items including medical resources and assessment centres, travel updates, emergency financial measures, evictions and repossessions, funerals, and more.

COVID-19 resources for LGBTQ2S – Visit The 519’s website for COVID-19 information, updates, services, supports, and resources for the LGBTQ2S community.

Jewish Russian Community Centre (JRCC) – 416-222-7105, ext. 999 – Support for Russian-speaking Jewish seniors who are 70+.

Resources from OACAO Business Partners – The Older Adults Centres’ Association of Ontario (OACAO) put together a resource list that might be of interest in older adults in the community.

The Ontario Caregiver Organization – has a list of COVID-19 resources for caregivers on their website.

Health Network for Uninsured Clients – The Health Network for Uninsured Clients is a collaboration of over 40 health and community service organizations that work together to improve access to health care for people living in Toronto without public health coverage (OHIP). They have created a useful document titled Accessing Healthcare in Toronto.

Free Repair – St. James Town Community Corner is offering free small appliance repair. For more information, please see their flyer.

Emergency Cooling Centres during Heat Warnings – The City of Toronto provided a Q&A document regarding cooling centres and plan to provide heat relief.

Fitness, Dance and Meditation

Bernard Betel Centre’s Director, Programs and Certified Fitness Instructor, Maria Lindgren, is leading a 30-60 minute gentle fitness class LIVE on the Bernard Betel Centre’s Facebook page every Monday at 12pm.

National Institute on Aging is offering a 15 minutes workout, a 20 minute workout, and a 60 minute workout for older adults.

Dancing with Parkinson’s – Offering free live dance classes through Zoom seven days a week. Visit their website for more information.

Meditation – Looking decrease stress and relax? Check out these 5 minute, 10 minute, and 20 minute free meditation sessions on YouTube.


Arts, Culture, Entertainment, and Lifelong Learning Programs:

The Met Opera – Stream handpicked past performances of the Met’s Live in HD series each night right from the organization’s website.

Google Arts & Culture Project – More than 2,500 spaces from around the world are accessible online, with many offering virtual tours of their holdings.

The Khan Academy – offers 1,800 video lessons on an range of courses from finance to the French Revolution.

British Museum – Explore a stunning visual timeline of the world, with an array of annotated objects. Great for the history buff!

African American History and Culture – This extremely popular museum is offering virtual tour to give you a taste of what the museum has to offer!

Russia’s State Hermitage Museum – Enjoy this extensive video tour of the largest museum in Russian. Complete with 45 galleries and 588 artistic masterpieces.

Kusama’s Infinity Mirrors – One of the hottest travelling museum exhibits of the past few years, enjoy this brisk room-by-room rundown of the hypnotic, multi-faceted work on Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama.

Duolingo – Duolingo is a free mobile app and website where you can learn a new language. Learn 30+ languages online with bite-size lessons using evidence-based teaching tools. Don’t let the cute cartoon characters dissuade you, it’s an effective program for people of all ages.

Melbourne Zoo – The Australian zoo has set up live streams of their snow leopard cubs, penguins, giraffes, lions and zebras to enjoy.

Canada’s Wonderland – Any thrill seekers out there? On the Canada’s Wonderland YouTube channel, they offer front row seats to many of their roller coasters!

Seniors’ Centre Without Walls (SCWW) – a free interactive telephone-based program that connects seniors.

Toronto Public Library – With a free Toronto Public Library card, you can access their collection of ebooks, audio books, lynda.com courses (over 3,500 video courses), magazines, and videos.

Vaughan Public Library – With a free Vaughan Public Library card, you have access to various digital materials including ebooks, films, music, magazines and more.

J-Flix – Presented by the Toronto Jewish Film Festival, J-Flix is a streaming platform dedicated to showcasing the rich heritage of Jewish film. Their collection is currently available for free, with new films added each week.

ChatterPack – ChatterPack, A UK based organization, put together a list of free, online ‘boredom-busting’ resources including virtual tours, online learning, music, literature, entertainment, learning a new skill, and more!

Activities to do While Physical Distancing – Canadian Coalition for Seniors’ Mental Health put together a wonderful resource list of things to without being physically close including puzzles, books, journaling, art, meditation, and more.

The Science of Well-Being Course – Offered by Yale University, in this free course you will engage in a series of challenges designed to increase your own happiness and build more productive habits. As preparation for these tasks, Professor Laurie Santos reveals misconceptions about happiness, annoying features of the mind that lead us to think the way we do, and the research that can help us change. You will ultimately be prepared to successfully incorporate a specific wellness activity into your life.

Toronto Writers Collective Virtual Workshops – Looking for community, creativity, and a chance to center yourself during this time of social distancing? Join the TWC’s FREE virtual creative writing workshops. No writing experience necessary. For more information and to register, visit their website. Spots are limited.

Cirque de Soleil – Enjoy an exciting 60 minute special performance on YouTube.

Circles Enrichment – Offering regular lectures and presentations via Zoom free of charge. Email info@circlesenrichment.com to register and for more information about upcoming presentations.

Thornhill Lifelong Learning – Offering weekly free (or by donation to a local organisation) webinar lectures on Thursdays at 2:00 pm. Join their mailing list by visiting their websitefor upcoming lectures.

Stratford Festival – Offering virtual “film festival”, FREE streaming of 12 Shakespeare productions. One film will be released on their YouTube channel every Thursday at 7pm EST and will remain available for three weeks.

National Theatre (UK) – Offering FREE full-length plays every Thursday. Visit their website for more information.

iVolunteer Email Pen Pals – iVolunteer is offering intergenerational ’email pen pals’ to help stay connected during this difficult time of isolation. If you are interested in being connected with a pen pal through iVolunteer, please email Sharon at sharonc@betelcentre.org.

Transportation:

TTC – An overview of measures TTC continues to take to keep their customers safe and well informed. View their TTC COVID-19 Response for more information.

Taxes and Financial Services:

During COVID-19, community organizations will be hosting free virtual tax clinics. Volunteers may be able to do taxes for free, by video-conference or phone, through the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program (CVITP). These virtual clinics will be held on an interim basis to help complete tax returns while still following physical distancing guidelines. For more information visit the Government of Canada’s website.

The Government of Canada is providing additional financial support of $2.5 billion for a one-time tax-free payment of $300 for seniors eligible for the Old Age Security (OAS) pension, with an additional $200 for seniors eligible for the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS). This measure would give a total of $500 to individuals who are eligible to receive both the OAS and the GIS and will help them cover increased costs caused by COVID-19.

Jewish Free Loan Toronto – Offering up to $8,000 interest-free loans.


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