Senior Solutions: Updates on assistance, tai chi classes, Senior Companion Program | Community-news

Earlier this month, Outreach Specialist Thom Simmons sent out heartfelt greetings to our many community partners.

“Senior Solutions works with senior centers, housing authorities, health care providers, social service agencies, family and community centers, food shelves, community care organizations, utility companies, fraternal organizations, faith-based communities, town boards, veterans’ groups, private businesses, and more. By working together, we can provide the highest quality and broadest spectrum of services to help older Vermonters live their lives in security and dignity.

Whether you have a long-term partnership in mind, an idea for a specific project, are seeking training for your staff on an issue related to supporting seniors, or would like a speaker on a topic of interest, Senior Solutions is eager to lend our support. Call Executive Director Mark Boutwell at 802-245-3688 to explore the possibilities,” said Simmons.

Let’s hear it for 100% Campaigns

On a periodic basis, Senior Solutions partners with local organizations to create highly visible, localized campaigns to raise awareness of food and fuel benefit opportunities. These campaigns last a full month, and include mailings to all residents, attractive informational brochures, and scheduled open hours in the community to assist with 3SquaresVT food benefit applications and a variety of fuel assistance mechanisms, including regular seasonal fuel assistance and Green Mountain Power electric assistance programs. Recent campaigns in Putney, Chester, and Andover saw dozens of families assisted by multiple organizations pooling resources to make “Every Resident Food and Fuel Secure!” which has become the rallying cry of these efforts.

How’s your balance?

Concerned with balance or falling? Free tai-chi classes can help! Two new Tai Chi for Falls Prevention classes have launched, sponsored by Senior Solutions and free to all 60-plus adults. Classes are taught by certified instructors. Check all these classes being offered throughout southeastern Vermont at www.seniorsolutionsvt.org.

With regular practice, tai chi improves balance by strengthening muscles and coordination; simultaneously, it strengthens the mind, enhancing calmness and confidence in bodily stability. Both physically and mentally, tai chi is a highly effective exercise for fall prevention. Tai chi movements are gentle and graceful, but like a steadily flowing river, they contain much power and internal strength. The fear of falling often results in more falls; Hence, confidence in balance will help to reduce falls.

For more information on Tai Chi for Falls Prevention throughout southeastern Vermont, call or text Wendi at 1-802-755-7295, or email her at wgermain@seniorsolutionsvt.org. A full schedule of ongoing classes can also be found at www.seniorsolutionsvt.org.

Help a neighbor — and yourself. Become a Senior Companion.

Americorps Seniors through Senior Solutions is looking for individuals 55 years or older to join the Senior Companion Program. To qualify you need an income federally defined as “low.” You should enjoy being with older adults in your community and have several hours a week that you can give to support your neighbors. You will receive a small tax-free stipend that will not affect your Social Security income as well as a mileage allowance so you can connect with others in your area. As a volunteer you will make a difference in people’s lives and experience a rewarding opportunity. You will get support and training and become part of a wonderful group of volunteers.

What do Senior Companions do? They provide friendly visits and companionship. They can assist with some daily tasks. They provide transportation for errands, appointments, and trips to senior centers They may become a walking partner They offer respite for caregivers. For more information, email Vmastroianni@seniorsolutionsvt.org or Phone the HelpLine: 1-802-885-2669 (toll free at 1-866-673-8376).

Senior Solutions is hiring

Everyone who works in our agency is compassionate, dedicated, and engaged in assisting older Vermonters to age in place, and we are looking to add teammates that are committed to our mission. The benefits package is great: a 401(k) match, plus dental, vision and other optional benefits available. We have opportunities for case managers, a case management supervisor, front desk assistant and SHIP/HelpLine personnel. See our job openings at www.seniorsolutionsvt.org/about/senior-solutions-jobs/ and see which position you would like to apply for.

February is Heart Health Month

This is the perfect time to have a Home Meds evaluation: a free review of all your medications, including prescription and over-the-counter, vitamins and supplements, and herbal remedies. Everything you take needs to be screened to identify any potentially harmful interactions within your system. The collection of data is sent to a pharmacist who runs tests and will alert you and your primary care physician if you elect to do so. Then you and your doctor can decide if any of the red flags require changing dosages or medications to keep you safe and healthy. This is totally free and you do not have to become a Senior Solutions client. Just be 60-plus and live in southeastern Vermont. Call the HelpLine at 1-802-885-2669(toll free 1-866-673-8376) now to arrange a meeting (safely according to Covid-19 guidelines). This screening can literally save lives.

Read all about us

Senior Solutions now has a monthly newsletter. Go to our website and sign up so you can learn about new projects, programs, benefits updates, and more. While you are on the website check the New to Medicare classes for 2022. Also, learn about the Homeowner Assistance program. These can all be found at www.seniorsolutionsvt.org.

Learn about benefits you may not know you qualify for. Regional senior centers are hosting Benefits Check Up sessions with Tracy who is our National Council on (NCOA) benefits specialist. You might be surprised how many of us are eligible for ways to boost our budgets. For more details and to book an appointment contact Tracy at 1-802-773-7917 Mondays through Wednesdays.

Days are beginning to get longer and we are starting to plan garden projects. Stay hydrated and eat balanced meals so you will be in good shape to enjoy your hobbies. Spring is coming.

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