Mall wide Seniors’ Month event at Mosaic and the Shops on Steeles and 404: Music, Dance and Theatre in Appreciation of Seniors and community

Posted by admin on June 17, 2019 in Community, Community Theatre, Dance, Social and isolation, Third Places with Comments closed |

June 14th was a day for celebrating, for connection, for interests, activities, inclusiveness, multi-cultural engagement and community. It was also a day for showing how we can transform places where people go to transact to one where we can also connect, bump into one another and experience.


At Mosaic, with the help of the management of the Shops on Steeles and 404 we staged a music, dance and theatre appreciation event for Seniors’ Month. The event was held in the mall itself!!


Jay Franco – One Man Big Band


Humber Actors Puppetry


Karen Millyard Danceweavers

We had more than 50 people attend: around 50 who were sitting in the seating prepared and more who were looking on from a distance.


Yes, everyone in the mall that day took part, either from a distance or from up close and personal.

If you hold regular events in public spaces, this allows some to engage at a distance and others to be up closer and more personal.  What matters more may be what happens over time: many of those who attended this event have come to Mosaic’s open community space events before, and know each other. This dynamic is important.

We had public space interaction, social space interaction, personal space and intimate space interaction. People were able to appreciate from a distance or dance with others up close. A range of preferences were provided for.

One Man Big Band (Jay Franco) provided music and dance at the start of the event:


Dancing as it went on…..




Then enter a youth theatre performance from Humber College Actors & Puppeteers: a well delivered comedic performance that combined a puppet cooking class with a tongue in cheek guide to dating for those who may have gotten out of the swing of things.


Then we switched back to lessons in English folk dancing:




Third places in our communities

We would like to see more creative use of space in our communities.

Every square foot of our public space is a potential stage for communication, creativity and activity.

Developing these “third places” for natural community interaction is very important. Most of these spaces exist outside the institutional and health care realm and tend to be neglected when assessing community funding and grant decisions.

We urge our communities to look beyond the “doing to” deficit based model that has driven the institutional focus on community development hitherto towards an inclusive, active community based model that embraces all aspects and areas of our communities, our neighbourhoods, our businesses and our private individuals.

“Neighbours and Communities” group

A special thank you to members of Mosaic’s “Neighbours and Communities” group. The Neighbours and Communities group is a grassroots group looking at community engagement and voice at the community and neighbourhood level. The first few months of group has been spent looking at social networks, social capital, meaningful communication and the need for collaboration.  It has also been introduced to the differences between asset based models of community development and the “doing to” model that tends to focus on peoples’ and communities’ deficits and weaknesses.

The group is looking at walkable neighbourhoods and after the summer break will be looking to reach out to local organisations, businesses and people to assess how we can all develop closer connection with community and support community building.


Marty and Miriam at the Neighbours and Communities Information Desk


Ramon and Regina at the event desk!

clip_image034 And Calvin, who appeared to be actively engaging with everyone….

A simple plan to address social isolation

At Mosaic we have a simple plan to address social isolation. And because this last Saturday was also World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) our simple plan for community development also addresses one of the biggest risk factors for elder abuse, that of social isolation.

Our simple plan for reducing social isolation and community engagement is as follows:

A) Encouraging meaningful conversation and communication beyond the simple hello, how is the weather, how are you. Ask another question or two.

Recent research points out that people are actually more open and receptive to talking to strangers than you might think. But, let us not forget that we also often lack meaningful conversation with those we see day to day and that are close to us. 

B) Develop socially supportive networks and culture in our walkable areas: these are our close neighbourhoods and our immediately walkable communities. Note that walkable may mean different things for different people and will vary according to how supportive our neighbourhood is. 

C) Opportunities to engage in interests and activities that allow for a wide variety of interests and social needs.   It is important that these opportunities do not frame participants as suffering from a deficit or a need but are considered as people who are able to contribute to community and its vitality.

D) An awareness of the importance of diversity, inclusivity and most importantly of empathy. Building a culture of empathy allows to take an interest in the realities of our joint existence and our rights to our own unique individuality within a social and community context. Our social interactions in public space should not exclude others, but should provide opportunity for connection with those important inner realms of being (social, personal and intimate space).

All of the above are dependent on the need for collaboration across our communities: individuals, private businesses, public sector and local governments, our environment and use of space. This is big picture, this is grass roots reaching out and connecting with our wider infrastructure, this is the development of voice, of awareness and empowerment and personal and community growth.

Let us move from the deficit, the bias, the need to the ability, the capability and potential of individuals and communities.  We can have both the simple and the diverse experience, the engaged and the reflective solo moments.

Elder Abuse Awareness Day–June 15th

Posted by admin on June 13, 2019 in Elder Abuse & Awareness with Comments closed |

What events are happening in your local area?

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is June 15th.  There are many events happening in and around your communities designed to engage people in awareness and prevention of financial, emotional, physical and sexual abuse of older adults specifically. 

A good website for information can be found at Elder Abuse Ontario and we provide a copy of their Spring 2019 Newsletter for your information:




On Creating a community or ““My knitting group has broken up,” said mom on the telephone….”

Posted by admin on May 13, 2019 in Community, Creative, Knitting Groups, Mid town with Comments closed |

“My knitting group has broken up,” said mom on the telephone, “but I may have found a new group to join.  We got a flyer at the condo about a knitting group at the CNIB that’s open to the community.”

“You should go,” I said.  “Winter is coming and you’ll need something to do. Besides what are we going to do with all the hats, mittens, and scarves we make every year?” 

My mother, Katharina Duhatschek, lives in a condo at the Kilgour Estates, and for the past few years she has been meeting weekly in the condo library with a group of like-minded women to knit and crochet for charity.  When I retired three years ago I got in on the fun, not showing up for meetings, but crocheting throughout the winter, making so many hats, scarves, and mittens that all family and friends were well-taken care of.  I gave all my extras to mom’s knitting group which sent them to women’s shelters once a year.

I have long understood the therapeutic benefits of knitting and crocheting.  Even before I retired I would often come home after a stressful day and crochet for hours into the evening, using the repetition of the stitches and the rhythm of the patterns, to calm me down.  Plus I got a big kick out of making something, choosing colours and textures and patterns, and bringing them together into a finished product.  It would be hard to get through a winter without knitting and crocheting. 

“We’re making Twiddlemuffs” said mom on the phone.  “Do you know what that is?”

“Nope. Never heard of them,” I answered.  “But let me see the pattern and we’ll figure it out.”  Mom had walked over to the CNIB the previous week and met the wonderful women of Mosaic.  Mosaic, we learned, is a home care and community resource centre.  The knitting and crochet group was making muffs, decorated on the inside and out with buttons, flowers, elastics, and ornaments.  The muffs would be distributed to residents of the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centres Veteran’s Wing.  Not only do the muffs keep fingers warm, but they keep fingers busy.

“They’re doing decoupage,” said mom on the phone a few months later.  “Do you know what that is?”

“I think so I said.  You stick pictures on wood and then varnish it.  You should go.”

The next time I visited, mom proudly showed me her decoupage box.  She had painted the exterior of the wooden box in blue and then cut out shapes of cottage scenes, black bears, canoes, and pine trees.  “I think I’ll take it to the cottage this summer and put all our cottage photos in it.  I’ll leave it on the coffee table so people can look through the pictures.”

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Creativity is important to well-being, and while we all encourage creativity in children, sometimes we forget that we still need to be creative as a we get older.  Making things, whether it’s boxes, or mittens, or muffs, allows us to design and innovate, to express ourselves through our hands, to produce something and be proud of it.  I’m glad mom has found a group like Mosaic, where she can participate in a creative community.

By Monica Duhatschek

Dotsa Bitove Wellness Academy, Free Workshop for Care Partners–9 and 29 May

Posted by admin on April 2, 2019 in Community, Dotsa Bitove Wellness Academy, Events with Comments closed |


Social Workers: Helping Resolve Life’s Challenges

Posted by admin on March 4, 2019 in Social work, Social Work Week, Social workers with Comments closed |

Every year in March, Canadians acknowledge the important work provided by Social Workers with Social Work Week. This year, the theme is “From everyday issues to complex needs: Social Workers, it’s what we do” and is being held the week of March 4-10, 2019.

The primary role of a Social Worker is to help people resolve their problems or challenges that are affecting their daily lives. They help identify what is causing the challenge or stress, and work with the individual to develop coping strategies. Often, this involves connecting the person/family to organizations in the area where they live.

Social Workers (about 17,000 in Ontario!) can be found in hospitals, family agencies, mental health settings, schools, and Employee Assistance Programs, to name a few. They are truly the ‘system navigators’ helping to connect those who may have entered the health care system and need help finding out who does what.

Examples where a Social Worker might help: mediating families in a crisis such as: an unexpected illness, grief counselling and elder care. Suicide prevention, mental health counselling, bullying and abuse and the stresses that people live with are all situations where Social Workers can help.

As our society ages and the number of socially vulnerable adults with complex care needs grow, the conflict between available resources – finances, people, time – will also grow, with more and more individuals seeking help from Social Workers.

It is unimaginable for most of us to think of what a ‘day in the life of a social worker’ would look like working with individuals and families who are in crisis, day in and day out. Take a few minutes to think about this. It’s not an easy job and it takes a special person to be a Social Worker. Be thankful that there are those who choose this career path because they want to help others. And they do a wonderful job!

At Mosaic, most of our clients are older and have complex care needs, so we work with Geriatric Care Managers, who are often Social Workers. We also work with Social Workers in hospitals when a patient is about to be discharged. And we have our very own Social Worker, Sarah, who is an important part of our team.

Mosaic staff will be visiting social workers at hospitals during March with food and treats as our way to say thank you to them. If you know a social worker, please take the time to acknowledge them!

If you are looking for a Social Worker who can help with an elderly parent or friend, please call Mosaic and we can refer you to a number of Geriatric Care Managers. Or, if you are looking for programs or organizations that have a Social Worker on site, our Community Resource Centres can help you with this. Call us at 905.597.7000 or 416.322.7002 or visit our website for more information:

For more information about Social Workers, please visit their website:


February – The Month of Love

Posted by admin on February 14, 2019 in Community Centres, Valentines Day with Comments closed |
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Beth Eshete and members of our community on Valentine’s Day 14 February 2019

Every year, seemingly the day after New Year’s, the advertising starts for Valentine’s Day. Red hearts in store windows, media advertising diamond jewellery to show how much ‘you love a person’, and of course, chocolate. Let me say right now, I LOVE chocolate. Seriously.

In the coldest month of the year, we have the excuse to get cozy with one another and celebrate love. But what does Love mean? If you asked 10 different people, you would get 10 different answers. Of course, there would be some overlap, but each person has their own love story. What is yours?

Would Chapter One be about the pet you had as a young child or about a sibling you looked up to? Maybe Chapter Two would be about your first love when you were only 8 years old? What chapters would your first kiss, your first break-up/make-up and your first ‘I Love you’ fall in to? Weddings, children and family pets. So much love! An entire lifetime could be put in to Chapters for sharing.

We now celebrate Family Day in February. It’s a great way to spend some time together and perhaps watch a movie or read excerpts from a book. So many options to choose from be they classic or modern. Remember these? 101 Dalmatians, The Bridges of Madison County, The Notebook, Titanic, Casablanca, The English Patient, The Time Traveler’s Wife, Happy Feet, and who can forget Romeo & Juliet or Pride and Prejudice? And these are just a few…

If music is more your thing, perhaps update your playlist to include some of the old favourites just to play on Valentine’s Day: Endless Love (Diana Ross); You Can’t Hurry Love (Supremes); Because You Love Me (Celine Dion); I Think I Love You (Partridge Family); Crazy in Love (Beyonce); and I Will Always Love You (Whitney Houston). If you like Country Music, pretty much every song has to do with being in love or falling out of love or breaking up then making up.

Oh, the ups and downs of love.

A mother’s love; a spouse’s love; siblings and furry friends; friends. Love is action. Perhaps you show this by a hug when one is needed (and even when it’s not); listening; supporting even when you may not agree with a situation. Cooking for your friends and family. Showing concern for another being – human or animal. It is affection without expectation and is unconditional. This doesn’t mean it can’t get loud and annoying at times. Because we know it does. But love should always be respectful, even in times of strife.

So, celebrate love. Grab a good love story, a box of chocolates and kleenex and your family or best friend and spend some time together. Talk about your own love story. Or come to Mosaic for our Community Café and share your story with others. Call us for more information or visit our website for program descriptions and dates.

Written by: Dina Campeis; Community Relations Manager, Mosaic Home Care & Community Resource Centres. (416.322.7002 or 905.597.7000.

Community Mapping Project–recent article from Markham Life (Spring 2019)

Posted by admin on February 11, 2019 in Community, Mapping with Comments closed |


The Magic of Opera…the magic of rich, diverse community space…

Posted by admin on January 21, 2019 in Community, Creative, Education with Comments closed |

At Mosaic Home Care and Community Resource Centres we provide community space and host events that are open to the wider community.  We aim to facilitate connection, meaning, fun, education, interaction and to emphasise the value of “human being” across the full spectrum of being.

One of our more popular events, the Magic of the Opera, presented by Marcel Deurvorst (Life Institute at Ryerson), was back again last Thursday (17th January) at our Markham community resource centre.  This event explored the Opera Don Pasquale (Donizetti) and our next Magic of Opera event (special focus on Luciano Pavarotti) is this Thursday at our mid-town CNIB community resource centre.

2 17 jan

We asked our Community Resource and Social Engagement Coordinator, Beth Eshete, to provide her perspective of the Thursday event:

Magic of The Opera Blog – Anna Netrebko January 17, 2019

I used to be one of those people who was annoyed at even the thought of Opera. Who wants to hear people sing at such a high-pitch for hours on end?  But that all changed….

Excuse my ignorance but it’s necessary for me to set an honest tone for this life altering musical experience I had at Mosaic’s Magic of the Opera Event on January 17th, 2019.

I obviously don’t know a single thing about Opera, so imagine my surprise when I found myself completely mesmerized by the angelic voice of Anna Netrebko, a beautiful Russian operatic soprano. Introduced to us by Marcel Deuvorst, an opera aficionado, Anna’s work really was a delightful “first” to ease my way into the world of opera. Marcel did a great job of explaining her life, her musical background and even her personality.

Mosaic community members watched clips from the opera in complete silence, not wanting to interrupt the disposition in the room. At the end they asked Marcel questions freely about the singer, and Marcel was happy to answer.

Overall the event was fabulously successful with people asking me to register them for the second presentation by Marcel featuring Luciano Pavarotti on Thursday January 24, 2019.

It’s always wonderful when our community members are captivated by the programs offered and of course, we are excited to have Marcel present for us again this week!

Registration is still open for this presentation, if you are interested please feel free to give me a call at 905-597-7000 ext. 242 or!

Beth Eshete
Community Resource & Social Engagement Coordinator

Beth’s own experience supports the relevance of opening up community space and filling it with rich diverse experience.    

Join Mosaic at the IG Wealth Management Walk For Memories on February 2, 2019!

Posted by admin on January 14, 2019 in Alzheimer's, Walk for Memories with Comments closed |

Join Mosaic at the IG Wealth Management Walk For Memories on February 2, 2019!

2019 feb 2nd

This is a huge fundraising event that happens every year for Alzheimer’s disease. Mosaic is one of the many sponsors for this event and we are encouraging everyone to come out and support a great cause and also represent our company. If you’re worried about walking in the cold, don’t! The 2 km walk in indoors through the underground PATH of Toronto.

Mosaic is honoured to be involved in this event as we are all aware of the effects of Alzheimer’s disease on the individual, the family and even, you, the caregivers. Mosaic’s Meaning on Me and Person Centered Care Model actively promotes the importance of social inclusion, participation and community involvement, this is why participation in events like the IG Wealth Management Walk 2019 are important for all Mosaic staff and members.

Event Details:
When: Saturday, February 2, 2019
Where we start: Royal Bank Plaza @ Union Station
200 Bay Street, Toronto, ON
Where we finish: Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel
123 Queen Street West, Toronto, ON

If you are interested in taking part in this walk with us, please sign up by clicking the link.

Where to Meet:
Once you register under our team name, you are able to send out recruiting and solicitation emails to your contacts for support. 

Our team will be meeting at The Royal Bank Plaza at Union Station, 200 Bay Street Toronto, ON at 8:30AM

The walk starts at 9:15AM so please arrive before that so we have time to organize with our team! And the first 10 people that sign up will be receiving a free Mosaic Team Shirt that we will all wear during this event!


Any Questions?

If you have any question regarding this event, please contact Beth Eshete at 905-597-7000 ext. 242. We’re hoping to see you and your families come out and support a great cause and have some fun while doing it!

Forget making New Year’s Resolutions. Try a Vision Board Instead!

Posted by admin on January 10, 2019 in Keynote with Comments closed |

Grab a coffee, a note pad and give yourself an afternoon of dreaming and then planning for the next year (or more).

To get yourself started, you need to be able to articulate what you want in life. This is a really big question. Break it down by asking what excites you and makes you happy? What does a good life look like? What activities or hobbies do you want to learn or improve upon? Do you want to go on a travel vacation? Or become more involved in your community. Whatever you come up with, make sure it is something that will bring you joy.

Now for the fun part! Start writing words and inspiring phrases, gather some pictures from your photo albums, magazines, online or even Pinterest!

For example, if you enjoy cooking, meeting with friends and losing the dreaded 10 lbs., while not spending a ton of money, what would your Vision Board look like? Think out of the box for the steps you could take to accomplish these goals. Maybe it would be to get a group of friends together for a monthly potluck where you bring a healthy dessert from a newly learned recipe. Perhaps getting together to volunteer at a community soup kitchen is more doable.

Some Vision Boards are more theme related. An African Safari perhaps? Pictures of the animals, who you will travel with, the food you will enjoy while there and so on. If you dream of this kind of vacation, and you need to save money towards it, you might find yourself preparing more home cooked meals than going to restaurants or buying that morning coffee on the way to work every day (no one said that reaching your goals would be easy).

Don’t overthink this. Don’t worry if there is no rhyme or reason to what makes you happy. This is a personal exercise that when you look at your board, it will make you smile and dream of what’s to come. What a positive way to start the day!

Put it all together by using a magnetic, cork or chalk board, a journal, or even your fridge! It could also be in an electronic format. Whatever works best for you.

Some tips for success:

– Commit to looking at the board at least weekly, daily is better

– Don’t just dream about the end goal – actively participate in the process of getting to the end goal. So even if the Africa Safari doesn’t pan out this year, you will have achieved some of the smaller goals to get you there: achieve financial success by eating out less and thereby losing weight. And that’s still a win!

Excerpt from a January 2019 Snap article and written by Dina Campeis.

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