BC & Canada Impact

British Columbia Seniors Outreach & Poverty Relief

In BC, Rick’s Heart Foundation runs its flagship program, Rick’s Heart for Music Program which helps to reach those who feel forgotten or left behind. Additionally, we close giving gaps by initiating new programs or making possible the work of other charities.

Charity Partners

Loneliness, hunger, lack of access to basic hygiene. We can’t let this go on in British Columbia.

Cocoons of safety keep us from seeing those who are suffering. In BC, in the midst of so much beauty and wealth, isolation and poverty exist beyond what most could imagine.
Rick’s Heart is to reach the unreached. To bring smiles and practical proof that we have not forgotten their humanity.

Seniors Outreach

Hygiene Relief

Child Hunger

Outreach to Seniors in Care Homes

The isolation of seniors in Canada is unacceptable. While we tried to protect them from the pandemic, they were more alone than ever.
And there simply aren’t enough resources at not-for-profit care homes to engage seniors and soften the loneliness.
But music has a special emotional power.
When Rick saw that his own father was slipping out of reach — despondent and disconnected — he knew he needed a way to break through.

Rick watched the documentary, Alive Inside. He brought headphones to the care home, placed them over his father’s ears and played music.

Just as the documentary showed, the results were astounding. His dad came to life — his eyes lit up as his head left his shoulder. Alert with memories that the songs resurfaced, (he) became engaged in the present by remembering the past.

That moment was the beginning of Rick’s Heart for Music program, now reaching seniors across British Columbia.

Seniors Music Therapy: Heart for Music

The Heart for Music program equips seniors’ care homes with complete music programs.

Each home receives headphones, devices and we support staffing to implement the program.
No two playlists are the same. We connect with staff to create personal playlists with residents’ favourite songs — music that’s meaningful and surfaces potent, positive memories.

Staff tell us that Heart for Music:

Our goal is to expand the Heart for Music program into senior care facilities across British Columbia.

Generous business sponsors have each funded a Heart For Music Start-Up Package, supplying individual care homes in British Columbia with everything they need to bring music to their seniors.

If you can help us reach seniors with the joy and comfort of music, please give.

Heart for Music brings seniors joy, peace & happy memories

(An) elder mentioned that she has not listened to music since she has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s. She started crying and mentioned that the music reminds her of when she was 16 years old.

- Arrowsmith Lodge

Thank you SO much for coming to our site and providing us with so much JOY!
It was such a wonderful afternoon! The residents had nothing but amazing things to say.

- Elim Village

I believe in the power of music. It brings people out of themselves. It brings them alive in a really special way and is a connector. Your brain is hardwired to make memories with music.

People in this stage of life have lost that part of their identity. Music brings them back to who they were.

— SHEILA HARRY, BMUS, MTA, KINSMEN LODGE

We have had a few outbreaks during the pandemic. It is such a good program to have while elders are isolated in their rooms.

Our elders love this program — it calms and focuses our lonely or anxious elders. They connect with the music.

During our Covid outbreak we continued to facilitate this program in elders’ rooms and celebrate the joy that the elders are receiving from the program.

— ZION PARK MANOR

I’ve started playing the music to one of our residents, and it was amazing to see his face light up when he heard the music.

One guy couldn’t stop crying because he said the music touched his heart. He kept tapping on his chest to indicate he was touched.

Sometimes I just use the tablet to play the music before lunch and put it on the table to let others listen. It was quite a scene, because a few of them will start singing and dancing.

Many of the songs bring back sentimental feelings and memories and some residents have gotten quite emotional while listening to the songs.

The residents who enjoy religious music also love the hymns that they used to sing in church growing up, songs that their parents would sing to them as little kids, or songs that remind them of home.

It’s also been great conversation starters for residents who tap into memories that they cherish and are able to look back and think about those times with their loved ones.

— CARE HOME STAFF MEMBER

One particular patient sat for a very long time singing along off and on and teary eyed when a song brought back a meaningful experience.

Having this opportunity and being blessed to see the positive outcomes is such a reward for me and the patient. So, thank you so much for the opportunity to have this program at Oceanside

— OCEANSIDE, WHITE ROCK

It has been hard to listen to the grief and loneliness the residents have experienced during lockdown and feel I have so little time in the week to address their need.

Your donation has given me a glimmer of hope; a feeling that others care for their difficult and very isolated situation. I feel that I am able to help them beyond the limited time I have with the residents each week.

In Swahili we say ASANTE SANA (and I’ll add a few more “sanas”)!

— GLACIER VIEW LODGE

The Heart For Music brings great comfort to the residents and helps them to focus. We find that during the music, the residents are singing along and are very engaged. After the music, the residents are more communicative and relaxed.

— VILLAGE BY THE STATION GOOD SAMARITAN

Today I noticed a patient full of frustration and anxiety. She sat in her wheel chair and repeatedly called out. I asked if she liked to listen to music and she said yes.

I put the headset on and she immediately appeared to relax. I was able to meet a need using the music to bring joy.

— TERTIARY OLDER ADULT MENTAL HEALTH, PEACE ARCH HOSPITAL

Just now I gave the music headset to a patient who struggles with words, mobilization and perhaps even feeling isolated with his challenges, and I played Elvis. He stated in a whisper ‘It’s nice’ as he comforted his therapeutic dog that sat on his lap.

The intervention of music has brought a whirlwind of positivity to our program, and I see a vast number of benefits to the patients.

— TERTIARY OLDER ADULT MENTAL HEALTH, PEACE ARCH HOSPITAL

The patients really smile when we put the headphones on as they can hear really well. One patient had tears in her eyes and said she had happy memories listening to that music.

I will be using this music 1:1 intervention every chance I get. So, thanks from all of us for letting us make a difference in lives that need so much love, care and support.

— PEACE ARCH HOSPITAL

Heart For Music Care Home Sponsors

British Columbia’s Hygiene Poverty

Most of us take basic hygiene for granted.
But soap, shampoo, sanitary products, linens, and other essentials are out of reach for many in BC.
That’s why we redistribute what would otherwise go to waste.

From Hotels to Homeless Shelters: Delivering Soap for Hope

Soap for Hope provides hygiene products and linens to vulnerable communities in BC.
By collecting and redirecting goods that would otherwise go to landfills, Soap for Hope helps to reduce our environmental footprint while helping those in need.
In 2020 alone, Soap for Hope delivered 77,000 pounds of hygiene supplies across the province.
Rick’s Heart Foundation sponsors the majority of Soap for Hope shipping, including long-haul deliveries from Prince Rupert to Grand Forks.
Two projects, in particular, have meant a lot to us: supplying the Halat First Nation during a flood and delivering 100 like-new mattresses to people who were previously sleeping on floors.
Find out how you can donate supplies, volunteer, or give to Soap for Hope.

Synergy between organizations is a powerful force; especially when a Foundation with a big heart recognizes the value a non-profit organization brings to a community. Soap for Hope is very grateful for our WIN-WIN partnership and we are thankful for the big heart of Rick’s Heart Foundation.

— C. Anne McIntyre, Soap for Hope, Executive Director

Child Hunger in British Columbia

No child should go hungry. But BC has the highest child poverty rate of any province in Canada.
Before the pandemic, 20% of children faced insecurity. Since COVID-19, that rate has increased 74% across the country.

Closing the Hunger Gap with Backpack Buddies

Backpack Buddies helps fill the weekend hunger gap — a time when children go without the support of school breakfast and lunch programs.
A child who receives a bag of food from Backpack Buddies may not get anything else to eat all weekend, so these supplies help kids get through the weekend without going hungry.

Backpack Buddies provided over 49,000 backpacks of food to children in BC in 2020.

Rick’s Heart Foundation has been happy to help Backpack Buddies expand into two new warehouses on Vancouver Island and currently sponsors the delivery of all their food to their Victoria warehouse.

Ricks Heart Foundation has been an integral part of Backpack Buddies expansion. 

The Foundation has provided all of the transportation of our food products from our suppliers to our primary warehouse, as well as transporting our backpacks across Vancouver Island. 

At a time when so much was uncertain for Backpack Buddies, RHF was one of the few constants we could rely upon to help us execute our programming. 

Thank You Rick’s Heart Foundation!

— Emily-anne King, Vice-President & Co-Founder, Vice-President & Co-Founder, Backpack Buddies

Giving is the

heart of community

Rick’s Heart covers shipping costs, gives financial support, and raises funds for international charities reaching the unreached. Rick’s Heart raises funds, gives financial and in-kind support to BC charities taking the edge off of poverty.
Show BC you care through Rick’s Heart.
You can direct your donation to any of our charity partners or to Heart for Music, a program led by Rick’s Heart.

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