Housing by and for Francophone seniors in predominantly anglophone communities
In recent years, the Fédération des aînées et aînés francophones du Canada (FAAFC) has received numerous heartfelt testimonials from Francophones across Canada. These testimonials consistently highlight a common concern: elderly individuals who had been able to live their entire lives in French within their communities suddenly encountered a language barrier when they entered long-term care residences that lacked French-language services.
This issue has spurred the organization into action. With the support of a Sectoral Impact Grant from the Centre’s Sector Transformation Fund, the FAAFC is undertaking a project to assess the needs of Francophone seniors in predominantly Anglophone communities in British Columbia, the Yukon, Ontario, New Brunswick, Newfoundland & Labrador, and Nova Scotia.
Their initiative includes a feasibility study to evaluate the housing requirements of this population and propose new community housing options and models that better cater to their specific needs. Subsequently, a development plan will be formulated, selecting 3 to 4 communities where there is sufficient community mobilization and leadership to support a pilot project for the establishment of community housing for Francophone seniors.
The organization draws inspiration from Abbeyfield Australia, where residents live together in a large house rather than an institutional setting. This model allows them to benefit from supportive services and foster a sense of community among themselves while remaining connected to the wider community. The FAAFC aims to develop replicable models that can be implemented on a national scale.