Villa Charities Continues Support for Seniors During COVID-19

TORONTO, April 27, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- For almost 50 years, Villa Charities Inc. (VCI) has been a destination and cultural leader for the Italian-Canadian community in the GTA, with support for senior care the pillar on which it was founded. During the current COVID-19 public health crisis, its top priorities are to keep employees safe, ensure service to patrons, residents and partners, and to do its part in preventing the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Although on-site operations at Villa Charities and the Columbus Centre are currently suspended, Villa Charities wants to ensure it is keeping everyone in the VCI family engaged, connected and supported, especially the more than 700 residents in the three seniors’ apartments buildings, Caboto Terrace, Casa Del Zotto and Casa Abruzzo.

“As the community continues to shift toward the new reality of COVID-19, Villa Charities remains committed to the safety and well-being of its most vulnerable population, the seniors,” said Anthony DiCaita, President and CEO, Villa Charities Inc. “We have implemented numerous programs and services, with support from valued partners, and are ensuring our apartment residents stay safe and healthy and have the support they need at this critical time.”

COVID-19 Safety Measures at the Independent Seniors’ Apartments

It is a top priority to keep the senior residents safe, and strict protocols have been implemented for residents and visitors to the apartment buildings.

  • Villa Charities has created a dedicated “Seniors Support Team” focused on supporting residents during this unprecedented time. This team of four staff members call all residents regularly to ask about their health status and are also assisting residents who don’t have family members to help with essential needs, such as providing groceries and medications.
  • 800 complimentary face masks have been generously donated by Glen Park Pharmacy and DeMarco Pharmacy for residents, which have been delivered along with gloves provided by Villa Charities.
  • Villa Charities will be providing access to a new Info Channel for all residents through their TVs.

Food Partnerships

  • Over the Easter weekend, Eataly Toronto generously donated traditional Italian cakes, which were distributed to the residents of Villa Charities seniors’ apartments.
  • Villa Charities is also working with several food partners and restaurants to provide free pre-packaged meals and grocery staples to its residents.
    • In partnership with Toronto-based food services company The Food Dudes, VCI will be providing pre-packaged meals.
    • In partnership with Pizza Nova, Villa Charities is delivering Focaccia Toscana and other products to apartment residents on a regular basis.
    • In partnership with Longo’s, Villa Charities has secured a basketful of grocery staples for each resident to enjoy.

Programs for Seniors

Villa Charities is supporting its apartment residents through outdoor fitness classes as well. Fitness instructors from the Columbus Centre Athletic Club are conducting weekly outdoor ZUMBA® classes while residents from Caboto Terrace, Casa Del Zotto and Casa Abruzzo can participate in their own home from a balcony or window. VCI is also providing cultural entertainment by arranging for Italian musicians and singers to perform concerts outside of the apartments. Since the residents are unable to attend mass, prayer services will also be held outdoors. The schedule of events is included below or on the Villa Charities website here.   

Cultural Performances – Serenata Al Fresco

Bruno Nesci Concert
Friday, May 1, 2020

  • Casa Abruzzo
    North Side: 11:00am / South Side: 11:40am

Claudio Santaluce Concert
Friday, May 8, 2020

  • Caboto Terrace
    North Side: 10:00am / South Side: 10:40am

  • Casa Del Zotto
    North Side: 11:20am / South Side: 12:00pm

ZUMBA® Classes
Tuesday, April 28, 2020 & Tuesday, May 5, 2020

  • Caboto Terrace
    North Side: 10:00am / South Side: 10:30am

  • Casa Del Zotto
    North Side: 11:00am / South Side: 11:30am

  • Casa Abruzzo
    North Side: 12:30pm / South Side: 1:00pm

Prayer and Hymn Service
Wednesday, April 29, 2020

  • Caboto Terrace
    North Side: 11:00am / South Side: 3:00pm

Thursday, April 30, 2020

  • Casa Del Zotto
    North Side: 11:00am / South Side: 3:00pm

Friday, May 1, 2020

  • Casa Abruzzo
    North Side: 2:00pm / South Side: 3:00pm

Fundraising Campaign

Villa Charities has launched a fundraising campaign to support its essential COVID-19 safety measures for the residents at the independent seniors’ apartments. Donations can be made through Villa Charities Foundation at

About Villa Charities Inc.

Villa Charities Inc. (VCI) is a registered charity and non-profit organization that enriches lives through experiences and services that honour Italian culture and heritage. For almost 50 years across the GTA, Villa Charities has provided cultural and educational programs and supported culturally sensitive long-term care and independent living apartments for seniors. VCI fulfills their mandate through a broad range of activities, services and facilities, both directly and in conjunction with its affiliates and independent Italian organizations. Affiliates include Columbus Centre and Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery; Villa Colombo Homes for the Aged Inc. in Toronto; Villa Colombo Seniors Centre (Vaughan) Inc. Di Poce Centre; and Caboto Terrace, Casa Del Zotto and Casa Abruzzo apartments for independent seniors. Each of these organizations is an integral part of the Villa Charities family with separate legal status and its own governance Board. For more information visit

For further information, please contact:

Laiba Fatima
416-640-5525 EXT. 255

Kathleen Sloan, CM
Director, Marketing and Communications
Villa Charities Inc.
416-789-7011 EXT. 309