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Healthy Aging for Filipino-Canadian Seniors: Embracing Spirituality for Mental Health Wellness

On July 29, 2023, Philippine Centre Canada (PCC), in partnership with the Ottawa Valley Filipino Canadian Senior Citizens’ Association (OVFCSCA) and with funding from ESDC’s (Employment and Social Development Canada) New Horizons for Seniors Program, hosted a workshop on Spirituality for Filipino-Canadian seniors at the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish. This workshop was the second in a series of ten workshops led by PCC and OVFCSCA and was attended by over 34 individuals eager to deepen their understanding of spirituality and its impact in their day-to-day lives.  

Father Francis Mateo, OFM, who delivered a talk and led interactive activities encouraging Filipino-Canadian seniors to reflect on the importance of spirituality in their lives, and how spirituality can have positive impacts on a person’s well-being. 

Participants discussed the benefits of spiritual experiences for older adults. For many Filipino-Canadians, our spiritual and religious communities are often the foundation of our support systems. A strong spiritual community can help us navigate negative feelings, enhance positive motions, and restore our senses of hope and optimism. Spirituality can be a way for all individuals, and especially seniors to find purpose and meaning in life, as well as a tool to help cope with stress, anxiety, or even depression. 

The workshop provided a valuable opportunity for Filipino-Canadian seniors to come together, share their experiences, and reflect on their spiritual journey. This event was held as part of ongoing efforts and initiatives led by PCC and the OVFCSCA to empower and support Filipino-Canadian seniors. 

The next workshops in the series will continue to explore various aspects of elderly well-being, providing the seniors with a platform to engage, learn, and grow. As the program unfolds, it is expected to strengthen the connection between spirituality and the Filipino-Canadian elderly, empowering them to lead fulfilling lives and actively contribute to the community.



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