COLUMN: Food for thoughtfulness

Local social dining opportunities at minimal cost

The Seniors Health Network each month poses a question to health-care professionals. This month, the network’s project manager, Kathy McIntyre, was asked:

I have an elderly uncle whose wife died last year. I worry that he doesn’t seem to socialize, his kids live back east and I know he eats every meal alone. He also lives on a very restrictive fixed income, so he can’t afford to eat out regularly in restaurants. Mealtime is such a social opportunity and I’d like to provide him with some information about places around White Rock where he could eat a meal in the company of others, particularly with Christmas approaching. It would be good for him both nutritionally and socially.

And you’re right; meal time is a tremendous opportunity to socialize.

It is well-known that socialization is key to mitigating depression and even memory loss in seniors.

Not only that, it is also well-known that many seniors don’t eat a well-balanced and nutritional diet. It’s hard cooking for one, and particularly if you have never done much cooking in your life!

Here is a list of places locally where your uncle could enjoy a meal in the company of others either at no cost or a very minimal cost.

Hopefully, this will provide him with an opportunity to meet others and to enjoy a nutritious meal at the same time.

• King’s Banquet Soup Kitchen, Star of the Sea Community Centre, 15262 Pacific Ave., Tuesdays, 3:45-6 p.m., free or by donation.

• JAM Toonie Lunch, Salvation Army, 15417 Roper Ave., Wednesdays, noon, toonie donation encouraged.

• Community Lunch, Alexandra House, 2916 McBride Ave., Crescent Beach, second Wednesday of the month, 12-1:30 p.m., $10 ($8 for members).

• Community Dinner, First United Church, 15385 Semiahmoo Ave., first and third Thursdays, 5 p.m., donation.

• Community Lunch Hut, St. John’s Presbyterian Church, 1480 George St., Fridays, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., free or by donation.

• Fresh and Lively, Kent Street Activity Centre, 1475 Kent St., hosted by Seniors Come Share Society, first three Fridays of each month, 12:30 p.m., $8, (transportation available, call 604-531-9400, ext. 207).

• Seniors Friendship Lunch, White Rock Baptist Church, 1657 140 St., second and fourth Friday, noon, $10, call 604-531-2344 the Wednesday prior to reserve.

• Community Dinner, Grace Point Community Church, 3487 King George Blvd., Sunday, 5 p.m., free or by donation. Call 604-538-1825 to reserve.

The South Surrey White Rock Seniors Health Network is a coalition of seniors service providers working under the auspices of the Mayor of White Rock’s office. For information on community resources, visit If you have a question for publication, please email

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