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Nova Scotia seniors say $500 grant is ‘a start’ but want more support from government

Seniors care grant to help elderly by covering cost of snow removal, household care

3 min read
caption Maureen Wilson (left) and her friend Bette Tomlinson were at the seniors care grant news conference Wednesday.
Hannah Bryenton

Some seniors say a grant program to help them pay for snow removal and other services is a good start, but they’re hoping for more support.

The province started accepting applications for the $500 grant on Wednesday.

Barbara Adams, minister of seniors and long-term care, launched the grant program at the Dartmouth Seniors Service Centre.

“Our population is growing in this province, and by 2030, more than one in four Nova Scotians will be age 65 and over, and that includes me,” Adams said.

The grant will cover costs such as snow removal, grocery delivery, household repairs and other care. Eligible seniors must be 65 and older, live in a home they own or rent, and have an annual household income of $37,500 or less. They can apply once per household per year.

The province estimates that 58,000 seniors are eligible for the grant.

caption A man asks Barbara Adams, minister of seniors and long-term care, about his eligibility for the grant.
Hannah Bryenton

At 21.3 per cent, Nova Scotia has the third highest percentage of seniors in the population compared to other provinces, according to a report from 2020.

Bill VanGorder, chief operating officer and chief policy officer for CARP Nova Scotia, a lobby group advocating for seniors, said there is a definite need for senior support in the province.

“It’s never enough,” VanGorder said. “But $500 can go a long way for people with those kinds of needs and people who are low income.”

He said the grant will save the government money because it’s cheaper for seniors to live at home than for the province to build more senior care facilities.

“Often, it’s a very simple thing that people need to be able to stay in their own home,” said VanGorder.

He said the grant is a good place to start but hopes to see more support for seniors in the future.

Maureen Wilson attended the news conference at the Dartmouth seniors centre and said she is excited about the grant. Much like VanGorder, she wants to see the amount increase over time.

“Maybe in time, it might increase to a little more, but for just starting out, that’s pretty good for some of us,” Wilson said.

Wilson’s friend, Bette Tomlinson, is optimistic about the grant.

“It’s a start,” Tomlinson said. “I think it’s wonderful for anyone that needs help.”

Barbara Adams said the province will put up to $32 million each year into the grant.

Applications for the seniors care grant can be submitted online, by mail or by fax. The deadline for applications is May 31, 2022. The money must be used before Nov. 30, 2022.

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About the author

Hannah Bryenton

Hannah is a reporter for The Signal at the University of King's College. She is from Prince Edward Island and is currently finishing her Bachelor...

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  1. D

    Dianne Barr

    How do you apply for this $500.00 grant for seniors
    • H

      Hannah Bryenton

      You can apply with this link:
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