Over the past 7-plus months, we have faced challenges aplenty. We’ve struggled to maintain life patterns that keep us healthy. We’ve adjusted to a view through foggy glasses over too tight masks. We’ve dealt with issues that we never dreamt would need to be considered. Risk assessments are the “new normal”. There’s tape on every floor we stand on (even the sidewalks) to tell us where to stand. And don’t even get me started on getting an appointment with a dental hygienist—when is that going to happen again?

But Emily’s entrées remain! (We have to look for the positive.)

Along the way, some important, and even critical aspects of life at the centre have fallen to the wayside. Many activities have been unable to re-start—Covid protocols are just too difficult to overcome, or co-ordinators are immune compromised and cannot come to the centre at all.

One thing we had thought was “automatic” was our regular communication channels would remain in operation. The e-mail list for your receipt of Echo was thought to be continuing to keep you informed of all the developments in a timely and efficient manner.

Unfortunately, we now learn that this is not the case. Many of you have only begun to receive communications from us in the latter part of September. For this, we apologize.

Your board has attempted to maintain a regular outpouring of information in the hope that would alleviate your concerns, raise your understanding, and provide you with comfort to know that all is not lost—your board, activity coordinators and others are all working hard to bring the centre through this difficult period.

Unfortunately, many of these messages never reached their intended target—you!

If you received the September Echo either by email or by dropping in during the limited times we have been open, you will know that Jim Coffin completed many upgrades to the physical building during the early months of the pandemic. You will also be up-to-date with Emily’s offerings and how much they are valued by all of us. You may have recognized the upgrade to the Echo format as well as the improved website. It was through the introduction of these latter improvements that we learned of the shortfalls occurring in communication.

We have since taken measures to improve the situation. Please bear with us as we try to deal with the myriad of challenges this period has provided.

For the month of October, the centre will be largely unavailable to us through the week. Your board has decided to accept a contract for occupancy by BC Elections, the revenue from which will allow the centre increased financial flexibility in the coming months. Weekend access to the auditorium for limited activity scheduling is in place, and come November, a more vigorous and complete schedule of operations will be introduced. You can look to the re-start of old activities such as Carpet Bowling, Ukelele, Tai Chi and wider options for Pickleball play. The board will also hold its interim general meeting as soon as we can.

Thank you for your understanding and continued support. We all look forward to a future that includes a vigorous and healthy Sechelt Seniors Activity Centre.