Walking through the doors of the Cummings Centre, it’s not unusual to be greeted by the staff and dedicated volunteers in a range of languages including, of course, English and French but increasingly Russian, Hebrew, Yiddish, Italian, Spanish, Chinese and many more.
“The Cummings Centre has evolved into a multi-dimensional community centre that meets the unique and changing needs of adults age 50 and over, both fit and frail,” says Pauline Grunberg, Executive Director.
Building on its Jewish heritage, Cummings embraces people from all ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds by providing dynamic and innovative programs, social services and volunteer opportunities in a vibrant, respectful, inclusive and compassionate environment.
Wellness Centre Supervisor Annette Vezina points out that her staff is fluent in English, French, Italian, Mandarin, Spanish, Greek, Vietnamese and Korean. “Take a moment to listen to the participants, staff and volunteers in the Adapted Clinic or Workout Studio and you will hear so many languages,” says Vezina. “Participants feel comfortable expressing their needs in their native language.”
Many classes transcend language appealing to all cultures from dance and art to cultural outings. Members have found their way to the Cummings Centre from all over the world and true to our Canadian mosaic have found their place at the Centre.
Moving to the music or participating in one of the many fitness programs is that much easier with many members joining in whose first language is neither English nor French, “We have some new members who only speak Spanish,” says Wellness Centre Instructor and Kinesiologist Zugay Lezama, formerly from Venezuela. “Communicating with them in their first language is part of the personalized approach we offer at Cummings.”
For more information about Wellness programs offered at the Cummings Centre, 5700 Westbury Ave., Montreal, consult the website at cummingscentre.org or call Annette Vezina at 514.734.1782.