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Wanted: Co-Location Partnership

sharing_0In this day of rising costs, decreasing stability of funding, and movement towards greater efficiencies we are seeking a partner with which to co-locate our services in Summerside.

In that office we currently have 3 employees – 1 who is full time, and 2 who are part time (2 – 3 days per week). Yet, we have an abundance of space – 3 private offices; a waiting room; and a kitchen/storage area.

We are very happy with our current property management company. However, we have a need to reduce our overhead costs. We are willing to move to another location, or work with our current landlord to expand/reconfigure our space to accommodate a partner agency.

We see the benefits of doing so as:

  • Shared/reduced overhead costs
  •  More efficient use of resources
  • Shared common space(s)
  • Possible shared reception position(we currently don’t have any)
  • Cross promotion of services and/or greater visibility
  • Creation of synergy as a result of partnership initiative(s)

However, there are also some challenges:

  •  The need to protect the confidentiality of clients
  •  Finding a partner organization that ‘fits’ well with our services
  •  Developing a strong partnership agreement that works for both agencies

We are willing to work with anyone who is interested in formally partnering in this way. We feel that if there is interest and commitment, solutions can be found to any and all barriers to making this work.

If you are interested, please contact Denise Lockhart, Executive Director, via email: director@familyservice.pe.ca or phone: 902-892-2441 ext. 3 or 902-436-9171.

Talking About Money- Why It’s Important & What To Cover

images-3By: Ellan Dickieson, Family Service PEI

Jenny and William have 3 adult children. Her sons Carl and Gary live close by and her daughter Nancy will be coming home from Ottawa for a visit next week. Jenny has suggested to her husband William that they sit down with all 3 kids while Nancy is home, to talk about their financial situation and future. William brushes her off, saying that it is not necessary and everything is under control.   

Talking about finances can be difficult, and many people, like William, would prefer to avoid such conversations altogether for a variety of reasons.

  • We have money, property and papers scattered everywhere…I don’t even know where to start.
  • We’ve already worked things out with our attorney.
  • We don’t want to feel pressured by our friends/ family to make decisions.
  • We are very private; we didn’t talk about our finances when we were young, and we don’t want to open up now.
  • Our children have their own life to deal with; they don’t have time for this.
  • We’re lousy with money. Besides I’m pretty sure my sister will handle this.   

A lack of communication and planning can be costly to your family or friends. The best way to prevent financial challenges is to make a plan when you are physically healthy and still living in your home. It is much easier to plan ahead, than to react to a sudden event or crisis that forces you (or someone else) to make decisions quickly.   

At the end of the day, what is really at stake is the opportunity for you to communicate your financial wishes, and get help to make those wishes come true. By communicating your wishes early on, you are:

  • Making it easier for your friends and family to help you with financial issues in the future.
  • Making sure everyone understands your wishes and desires, eliminating confusion.
  • Creating a support network with whom you can talk to about concerns, ask questions, or get advice from.

When you think about initiating a conversation make a list of what topics you do and do not want to cover. Don’t feel obligated to discuss all information if you are not comfortable doing so. If at anytime you are feeling pressured, confused, or uncomfortable, ask to resume the conversation at a later date.   

Things to cover in a financial conversation may include:

  • Money – income, savings, investments
  • Property – assets
  • Liabilities – debts
  • Housing – cost of living
  • Health Care – cost of private care
  • Legacy – gifts, bequests
  • Legal Documents – power of attorney, will   

Financial conversations of this type are important regardless of age. People should always ensure at least one person is aware of their financial situation and their wishes in the event of a major and sudden event which would dictate the need for someone to make decisions on their behalf.   

For more information on having a conversation about money visit: www.ItsYourRight.ca

Avoiding Holiday Debt

Early-Christmas-Shopping-1402By: Investor Education Fund
​With the cost of holiday gifts, parties and travel, many people find themselves in debt over the holiday season. But with a little planning, you can avoid holiday debt.

8 tips to keep holiday spending on track

1. Set a budget for your holiday spending
Set a budget that you can afford and stick to it. It should include all the things you’ll spend money on over the holidays, such as gifts, cards, decorations, parties and food. Use this holiday budget worksheet as a guide.

2. Save before you shop
Save a little bit for the holidays each month. That way you’ll be spending cash you already have on hand. If you choose to use a credit card, you’ll have the cash to pay it off right away.

3. Make a list
If you shop with a list, you’ll be far less likely to buy on impulse. That means you’ll also be more likely to stick to your budget.

Before you shop:
List the people you plan to buy gifts for.
Think about their interests and the kind of gifts they would like.
Estimate the cost of each item on your list. You may be able to do some comparison shopping online.
Check that the cost of each gift fits your budget.

4. Pay cash, or pay credit cards in full
Paying cash for everything can be a way to help you stick to your budget. If you choose to use a credit card, pay it off in full and on time to avoid interest charges.
How much does that gift really cost?
To learn more about the risks of holiday debt, read Luc’s story.

5. Keep track of what you spend
Keep a record of what you’ve spent and what you’ve bought, and compare it to the list you created. If you start shopping early, it can be easy to lose track over several weeks or months. Try putting all your shopping receipts in a single envelope. As you shop, add the amount of each new purchase onto your total.

6. Shop early
If you shop at the last minute, stores may be out of the items on your list, and you may be more likely to buy on impulse. You’ll also have less time to shop around for the best deal. If you shop online, you’ll pay higher shipping fees if you wait until the last minute to order.

7. Look for sales and other discounts throughout the year
Watch for sales throughout the year to spread out the cost of gift-giving. Sign up for e-mail or even text-message promotions from the retailers you are most likely to buy from. Also sign up for or check the balances you have on rewards programs offered by debit and credit cards. You may be able to get a free gift or a discount. If you shop throughout the year, resist the temptation to buy additional gifts during the holidays that aren’t on your list.

8. Look for ways to reduce your travel costs
There are 2 ways you can try to cut your travel costs for the holiday season:
Buy your tickets early, at least by October.​
Wait until the last minute. Some travel websites have last-minute sections that offer huge discounts on travel packages. You must be flexible on your dates, though, and there’s a chance no travel packages will be available.

Sourced from: http://www.getsmarteraboutmoney.ca/en/managing-your-money/planning/managing-debt/Pages/Avoiding-holiday-debt.aspx#.VH3DZYuWt95

Having A Family Conversation About Money

family conversationsHaving a Family Conversation about Money

By: Family Service PEI & Credit Counselling Canada

Do any of these sound familiar?

  • The holidays are coming up and your adult children will be coming to visit.  You know that you should talk to them about money and your decisions for the future.  You are worried about having enough for retirement.
  • Your children are young and you know you should be teaching them about money.  Where do you start and how much should they know about your family finances?
  • Your kids are growing and talking about ‘what they want to be’ after high school.  How do you introduce the idea of saving for post-secondary education and what you might be able to provide?
  • You’ve just become engaged and you want to have the money conversation since you are concerned that your fiancée may be in debt and you need to have a plan going forward.

If so, it’s time to have the family conversation about money.

These conversations are always better held sooner than later.  Even in the case of an engaged couple, the money conversation should happen earlier in their relationship so that the two partners could determine their financial path forward.   Couples in longer term relationships need to talk regularly about handling debt, savings for emergencies, retirement and health care.

Let’s start with seniors and their adult children.  This is an important conversation to have as early as possible.  This is also one of the talks that you don’t want to have at holiday time.  Leave this topic for another visit and enjoy the holidays together without discussions that could be stressful.

Here are some additional tips to consider:

  • Have a talk with your spouse first and plan ahead before talking to your adult children.  Make a list of what topics you do and do not want to talk about.  The best way to prevent financial challenges is to plan ahead when you are physically healthy and still living in your home.
  • Take it slow, this may be an awkward and difficult conversation for them so be considerate of your adult children’s feelings.  It can be a tough conversation when talking about last wishes for burial/cremation, sources of cash flow, investments, assets and liabilities, insurance coverage, powers of attorney and wills.
  • Know that you will always have the final decision; after all it is your money and your life.
  • Ensure that you have follow up conversations particularly since they likely won’t have all the information in one sitting and they need time to assimilate and make decisions.

At the end of the day, what is really at stake is the opportunity for you to communicate your financial wishes, and get help to make those wishes come true. By communicating your wishes early on, you are:

–          Making it easier for your friends and family to help you with financial issues in the future.

–          Making sure everyone understands your wishes and desires, eliminating confusion.

–          Creating a support network with whom you can talk to about concerns, ask questions, or get advice from.

Everyone needs to have money conversations no matter the stage or age of your family members.  Sharing examples of things that you have undertaken may provide encouragement for them to do something similar.  For instance, having made a power of attorney for finances and personal care makes you feel more comfortable about any future situations.  This may ease the way for them to take this step.

Remember that money is a personal matter.  Everyone has boundaries around personal information and you should ease into these discussions with patience and empathy.

Focus Group Sessions

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We need your input! What do older adults need to protect themselves financially as they age? Come join one of our focus group sessions and give your input. For more information, please click on the picture.

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Tips to Consider When Talking to Your Kids About Finances

School’s out for summer! Now’s the time to talk to your kids about money.

June 27th, 2013 by TD Wealth Management

It’s that time of year when textbooks go back on shelves, pencils and pens go back in their holders and staplers sit stagnant on desks – school is out for the summer. But, that doesn’t mean learning should end when the final bell rings.

The summer months can be a great time to teach children about financial literacy. From budgeting for a trip to the grocery store, to keeping track of expenses or saving for a special purchase, instilling early savings habits and money management practices can have a positive impact on kids’ financial future.

For some parents, offering too much information or not enough is where it can get tricky. So, how do you find the right balance?

Here are a few tips to consider when talking to your kids about finances…

·         Find age-appropriate ways to talk about money – It’s important to make money lessons relevant for your child’s age so they know what they should be saving for. For young children, it could mean saving for a special toy or a bike, and for teenagers and young adults, it could be investing in post-secondary education or planning to move out of the house on their own.

·         Explain that saving and investing can help achieve their goals – Educating your children on savings and investing products can help them understand why they should be putting money away, and how to make it grow faster. If they’re entering college or university, consider teaching them about interest and the basics of generating returns on investments.

·         Talk about savings as an investment for their future – Teaching your children to ‘pay themselves first’ can help introduce the value of saving for a long-term goal. For most children, a savings account is the first step. When they start to generate a steady stream of income, it might be time for them to consider using a service that automatically puts money aside.

Make it real

Learning a thing or two about the value of budgeting, saving and investing can help children realize that it’s not always easy – and that it takes some planning and practice to reach their financial goals. It’s important to start the conversation early and continue having it over time. The lessons may work best if they are set in real-life situations, instead of just a single sit-down talk.

Kim Parlee is Vice President at TD Wealth Management and host of MoneyTalk on Business      News Network. TD Waterhouse provides a full range of investment and wealth management  services.

Affordable Summer Fun!

80On summer vacation and looking for some cheap fun activities to keep you and your family busy? You are in the right spot! There are many activities you can do and places you can see all over PEI that are affordable and fun for everyone!

If you are interested in parks that are fun for the whole family there is Sandspit Amusement Park in Cavendish, home to PEI’s largest rollercoaster, a ferris wheel and the Rock N’ Roll. Burlington Amusement Park also offers affordable fun, with Go Karts and batting cages. Last but not least, Shining Waters Family Fun Park is the place to cool off on a hot day, with numerous water slides and also a variety of farm animals!

On a rainy day, practice your golfing at Black Magic Indoor Mini Golf or go take a look at Ripley’s believe it or not or Wax World of the Stars, all located in Cavendish. Not in the budget? Perhaps car-load night at Brackley Drive-in Theatre is more affordable. Enjoy watching movies outdoors or in your car and the best part: you feel like you’re back in the 1950’s!

For low to no cost adventures, the beach is a great place for the whole family to go and relax, make sand castles, and enjoy the beautiful ocean. PEI has miles of beautiful beaches, each one with its own character. Looking for sand that sings? Try scuffing your toes at Basin Head. Prefer lots of company? Then stop by Cavendish or Brackley Beach. Who among us does not have a happy memory of a family day at the beach, when the atmosphere was so relaxed that we didn’t even notice the sand in the sandwiches?

There will be numerous Exhibitions taking place all across PEI this month. These events are generally very affordable and FUN! In Prince County there will be the Tyne Valley Oyster Festival, and the Kensington Harvest Festival. In Queen’s County there is the Old Home Week in Charlottetown. And last, in the King’s County area there will be the Northumberland Fisheries Festival and the Eastern Kings Festival. All these events will be happening all summer long so be sure not to miss out on all the fun!

Erectile Dysfunction and Your Relationship- Part 2

***We are happy to present a series of articles on sexual and intimacy issues, written by our very own therapist Christina Campbell who has an extensive history working in the field of sexology. This series is the result of positive feedback from previous articles, and will cover topics that negatively affect couples. Please know that the content is intended for a mature audience and reader discretion is advised. Should you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact us using the contact page on our website.

In last months article we introduced readers to the concept of erectile dysfunction, its causes and how it affects a relationship. In part 2 we will now look at how to approach the problem of erectile dysfunction and what treatment may be beneficial.

How should you approach the problem?

Being able to talk about is a huge and first step. “Opening the lines of communication is paramount in resolving ED”, says Marian Dunn, PhD, “ED is not initially easy to talk about. But not talking about it can seriously damage a relationship.”

Sandy has been in a relationship for 11 months with a man who suffers from ED. “We’ve worked hard on handling it,” she says, “and we talk about it all the time, which really helps.” In addition to encouraging her partner to see his doctor for a physical exam, Sandy says that being able to talk about the situation has actually brought the two closer together.

Dr. Janice Lipsky says that “Women don’t need to take responsibility for their partner’s ED, but many women can and do play a critical role in supporting men to seek treatment.”

Is there anything to learn during treatment? Is treatment beneficial or not?

One of the benefits of treatment — be it medical or psychological, or a combination of the two — says Donahey, is that it can educate both partners about ED. It’s important to realize, for example, that just as a woman’s sexual responses may change as she ages, so, too, do a man’s. “A man’s sexual response rate also slows down as he gets older,” Donahey points out, therefore, in his 40s or 50s, he may need more direct stimulation of the penis. On the other side, a woman shouldn’t take this as a sign that her partner finds her unattractive.”

Donahey also suggests that couples expand their definition of what sexuality is so that they can maintain their physical intimacy. “Be more flexible,” she advises. “There’s more to sex than just intercourse … try manual stimulation, oral stimulation, stroking, kissing. These are all a part of an intimate relationship and can lead to an orgasm for both partners.

What can be done about Erectile Dysfunction?
Lots can be done about it. Don’t let yourself get into a hopeless mode. Talk to your doctor about the problem.

The first thing your doctor will do is to make sure you’re getting the right treatment for any health problems that could be causing or worsening your erectile dysfunction.

A variety of options exist for treating erectile dysfunction. Your doctor can explain the risks and benefits of each treatment and will consider your preferences. Your partner’s preferences also may play a role in treatment choices.

How can Sex Therapy help?

Talking with a counsellor skilled in ways to optimize sexual function is a proven erectile dysfunction treatment on its own. It can also maximize the results of other types of erectile dysfunction treatment — and ease concerns associated with erectile dysfunction

Sex therapy focuses on promoting effective communication about sex and learning techniques to improve sexual function among couples, which can ease stress and improve erectile function.

Although one-on-one counseling for erectile dysfunction can help, sex therapy usually works best when the client’s partner attends counselling sessions too.

The good news for many men is that ED can be prevented or treated, safely and effectively. If you have ED, there is hope and there is help. Talk to your health provider and a sex therapist.