Rosella Franklin (left) and Nelda Davey sit with Martin Gardner

Rosella Franklin (left) and Nelda Davey sit with Martin Gardner

Renos launch new era at Silver Springs

Vancouver Resource Society purchased the Vernon property two years ago.

Making Silver Springs retirement residence comfortable, clean, safe and fun, all while being affordable, has been the Vancouver Resource Society’s goal since purchasing the property two years ago.

Martin Gardner, VRS director of operations, Senior Living Program, has committed to high standards of living with prices that start at approximately $1,100 per month.

Three meals a day, laundry, housekeeping, maintenance, recreation programs, and 24-hour emergency response is included in the monthly rate.

“We create affordable housing in the communities we serve,” said Gardner.

VRS is a non-profit society that partners with B.C. Housing and their own internal program, Seniors Affordable Living Initiative, to provide seniors on a fixed income a quality place to live.

Silver Springs has seen a lot of upgrades over the last year, such as fresh exterior paint, landscaping, new flooring and paint throughout the interior, new furniture and decor, a wireless emergency response system and new signage.

Many of the changes have been made by Gardner after listening to the residents and hearing what is important to them.

Small changes, like improved lighting in the cards area, reconfiguring some of the common areas to make the residents more comfortable and a lot of elbow grease to get the standard of cleanliness up to snuff, has had a big impact.

“VRS recognizes what we think is truly important to seniors — the food has to be great, there has to be great recreational programs and events for them to participate in and be social, the property has to be clean, safe and secure, and our staff are the key component of that and they have to be friendly and attentive and live up to our standards,” said Gardner.

The improvements aren’t stopping anytime soon.

Silver Springs has a kitchen expansion in the works, a new salon is being added as well as a recreational and events space with an atrium.

Along with the new recreational space, Silver Springs is recruiting a recreational programmer to program activities seven days a week such as music, exercise classes, educational events, pub nights and family events.

The independent living residence has 121 suites with studio and one-bedroom rooms available.

Interior Health staff work in the building to provide home care services for seniors as their needs change.

“We are staffed 24/7 so the residents are very safe and secure,” said Gardner.