Seniors in Conversation connects and inspires

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By on November 1, 2021

Paige KahkonenOne of the silver linings of the pandemic was the creation of ‘Seniors in Conversation,’ a weekly Zoom call with older adults who come together each Tuesday morning from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. to hear from a guest speaker. Recently, the conversations have included chats with Ottawa’s Mayor Jim Watson, tales from former Senators, traditions from Algonquin Spiritual Leader Albert Dumont, and even tips from a master gardener. 

The program is based at Trinity Anglican Church in Ottawa, but it is inclusive and open to everyone and has built quite the virtual community, growing every week. Since it is online, distance is no problem. Here are some thoughts from our participants about what ‘Seniors in Conversation’ has meant to them.

“I have enjoyed ‘Seniors in Conversation’ since it began. It was sponsored by my church, Trinity Anglican in Old Ottawa South, so I looked forward every week to seeing many other people from my church and chatting on Zoom. The series has had so many interesting speakers, as well as singers and comedians. ‘Seniors in Conversation’ is inked in on my calendar for as long as it is available.”

— Sue Cherry

 I had a sabbatical this year, but all of my plans for travel, conferences, and research were side-lined. I found myself, like so many people did, cut off from my work colleagues, isolated from valued social connections, and worried constantly about my mother in long-term-care. There were bright spots. During the pandemic, my week has always properly started on Tuesday mornings at 10 a.m. with ‘Seniors in Conversation,’ which is actually an enjoyable use of Zoom (well that, and church services, too—thank you Revs. Aaron and Mark). I love learning, and the well-organized variety of topics and speakers keeps me coming back: history, health, politics, art, epidemiology, travel, music and many more. I am so grateful for this community-oriented learning opportunity.”

— Beth Hughes

“I’m a U.S. citizen who fortunately found her way to ‘Seniors in Conversation.’ The Zoom modality makes it very easy to learn about new topics from experts whom I never would have otherwise met. As well, the people attending these events are delightful, thoughtful, intelligent, and friendly individuals. I have fun engaging with the speakers and the attendees and learn something new to boot! It feels like I have found a new community that is nurturing to my soul. I highly recommend attending ‘Seniors in Conversation’.

— Annette Kay Donnell

“I was referred to ‘Seniors in Conversation’ by my daughter who used to live in Old Ottawa South and read about the program in the OSCAR. I registered just before Christmas last year and have ‘Zoomed in’ fairly regularly since then. I have found the guest speakers and programs to be interesting, educational, entertaining and sometimes inspirational. In my opinion, ‘Seniors in Conversation’ meets a need in the community.”

— Ron Doll

“When I first signed into the Zoom invitation for ‘Seniors in Conversation,’ I had no way of knowing what a lifeline and support this Tuesday morning ritual would become. That first Tuesday, faced with all those strangers in the little Zoom boxes, felt surreal. But week by week, those faces eventually became real people who I recognized and was learning to know, who greeted me warmly, and continued to surprise me with their insightful and thoughtful comments and conversation. I always left the Zoom time feeling encouraged and — most importantly — less alone in all of this craziness we’re living through. 

— Lorna Unger

To register for a “Seniors in Conversation,” please email [email protected] with your name, phone number and postal address. Remember, everyone is welcome to attend. For updates or to see our upcoming schedule, follow us on Facebook at @SeniorsInConversation or on Twitter at @RSOOS_Trinity. 


  • Paige Kahkonen

    Paige Kahkonen is a Carleton University student doing communications for Seniors in Conversation and Coffee Conversations.

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