By Lexa King, firstname.lastname@example.org
Our initial meeting of the Aging in Place initiative was held July 11, 2019. Seven members were present. It was an opportunity to meet and share our reasons for responding to the Call For Action and our visions for what we hope to create for the group. Several came forward out of an interest in volunteering and in assisting the elderly. Some of us are on the fringes of needing assistance with managing our daily lives as we are achieving senior status and new challenges appear. We all agreed that Candler Park is dear to us and we have no plans to leave it for any other neighborhood around Atlanta.
As we exchanged ideas, it became clear that efforts are needed in a few realms. The most important thing at this point is to identify and locate those within Candler Park who are aging and may need assistance either immediately or down the road. We are aware that people may be hesitant to step forward due to a number of concerns. We want to reassure everyone that the information that is shared with us will never go anywhere outside of the group. We would like to gather a list of the names of people in our community who may benefit from the services we shall be providing. In order to benefit anyone, we must know who you are and where you live. Also, the best way to reach you, both phone number and email address. Please, I encourage you, reach out and let us know who you are. Or if you have a neighbor who you anticipate could benefit from our group, let us know. I can easily be reached by phone at 404-452-9898 or email email@example.com.
The next area to address is to gather a list of services available to seniors. Several government agencies support seniors and there are even discounts and deals available from corporations and various organizations. For example, did you know that Wendy’s offers a free Senior Drink that is yours for the asking? It’s easy enough, but you have to know to ask, because they don’t just offer it. So next time you order a salad or burger at Wendy’s, tell them you would like a Senior Drink with that! No charge!
Finally, we will be polling folks about the various services they would like to see us offer. Maybe you need help taming your yard (before or after receiving a City Code Enforcement Violation!), maybe you have a few small projects around the house that need to be addressed and you can’t do them, perhaps someone to pick up a few groceries at Kroger once in a while. This list could be huge. And as we are more organized and have more exposure we hope to attract some professionals who will volunteer their services on an as needed basis.
So you can see there is no shortage of tasks to take on. Eventually we would like to offer programs to our seniors with various presentations that will provide information to make life more manageable and better. We may even schedule an occasional outing.
We need your help. Please reach out if you would like to be a warrior and help with this effort or if you feel you would benefit from the program or to notify us of someone you know who would benefit.
One last thought. Last week, ironically, I fell in my house. Yeah, I know, everyone has laughed at the “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up” commercial. It’s not so funny when it happens to you. I have a bad hip, so getting up off the floor is nearly impossible for me without assistance. I called a friend who lives nearby and has my key and, fortunately, he was close and available. He came over and provided the much needed help. But I got to thinking about what if he was out of town or busy? The next day I was at Lowe’s buying a combination lock box. It was under $35. I had a spare back door key made and I will be putting that lock box somewhere in the back of the house so that any neighbor or first responder that I call for help will be able to access it and get in the house without breaking down an expensive door! Maybe I’ll stick my daughter’s contact info in there with the key. She lives in Savannah and has a different last name than mine. Someone may need that information some day. You may want to do the same, no matter your age.