Seeking board members for innovative seniors housing

SWOOS is exploring the Abbeyfield model for seniors’ living, similar to one on Parkdale Avenue in Ottawa.

By Angela Davis and Terrance Hunsley

Senior Watch of Old Ottawa South (SWOOS) has formed a Housing Project Team to explore unique, innovative options for living in our community and needs community-minded people with various skills for its board of directors. SWOOS is collaborating with Abbeyfield Canada ( to capitalize on their experience in developing small non-profit, communal seniors housing.

In the Abbeyfield model, residents live independently in a studio or bachelor while sharing common living, dining and recreational space. Meals are prepared for residents by a paid housekeeper/chef. An Abbeyfield home already exists in Ottawa on Parkdale Avenue and offers accommodation for ten independent seniors.

The model is flexible enough to be adapted to the neighbourhood’s housing needs. One opportunity we are exploring is for a floor or more of the tower being planned for the west side of Bank Street at Riverside Drive to be customized to house an Abbeyfield-style residence. We are also exploring other options.

The Housing Project Team is in the process of incorporation with Abbeyfield Canada and needs future-thinking, community-minded people with various skill sets as directors. This is an excellent opportunity for those interested  in volunteering in the community to acquire experience on a not-for-profit board. We are particularly interested in hearing from those with bookkeeping and secretarial skills.

While SWOOS looks at our community through the eyes of seniors, we believe that an age-friendly community requires the participation of all ages for the development of optimal amenities and for intergenerational social health. If you are interested, please contact us at

Angela Davis and Terrance Hunsley are co-chairs of the SWOOS Housing Project Team.

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