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Dear Beaver Island Residents,
I want to extend our appreciation to the Islanders for hosting the Commission on Aging's Beaver Island Task Force on April 8th. Thank you to Carolyn Works and Joan Vyse for refreshments, Jean Palmer for her assistance, and Nancy Tritsch, CoA Board member. Thank you also to PABI Board members Don Tritsch and John Fogg for their tour of the new Community Center, and Pete Lodico with BI Senior Housing for information on the proposed new housing development.
Members of the CoA task force in attendance were County Commissioners Shirley Roloff, Shirlene Tripp (representing Robert Drebenstedt), Corrine Russell, committee chair, and Margo Johnson. Our organization consultant David Emmel, of Abbot and Emmel from Midland, also accompanied this group.
The purpose of the meeting was to get input from residents and to hear concerns about senior services.
The CoA board voted in January to help purchase Community Center kitchen equipment for up to $68,362, contingent upon a contract with the PABI. Work on this was suspended pending our meeting with Island residents. Details of a contract are yet to be worked out including, how the COA will provide a senior meal site in the Community Center, who will employ staff, how the equipment will be used, financial obligations of leasing the equipment, etc… Contract language must be approved by the CoA, the County's legal counsel and the County Commissioners. We look forward to extending capital improvements to a BI facility similar to what we are doing in other areas of the County.
Capital expenditures will be in addition to, not in place of current services such as Homemaking, Personal Care, and Respite, which are based on demand. We are trying to help meet the growing demand of the Island's senior residents by offering to sponsor training for more Certified Nurses aides to provide the services. Other than adult day services, Islanders can take advantage of lawn care and cleanup and snow removal reimbursement contracts, the new Alzheimer's Lifesaver Program, Sunday Dinners at a local restaurant, Information and Referral by using our new 800 number, ( 866-428-5185), Medicare/Medicaid Assistance Program for Medicare Part D, free tax services, and much more. There are also now two other agencies assisting in-home clients with greater needs—Care Management and Medicaid Waiver Services are offered by Area Agency on Aging and Northern Health Care Management out of Traverse City.
There were many other positive suggestions. We know we need to keep communications open to Islanders, and will let you know of upcoming services and events. We at the CoA are listening, and strive to improve the quality and diversity of services to seniors throughout the county.
Working together to serve seniors,
A CoA Overview
Over the past 15 months, the CoA board, staff, and community stakeholders, including commissioners, have been engaged in an intense effort to expand, enhance, and improve the quality of senior programs and services provided by the CoA. We began with an independent outside assessment, and continued with brainstorming, prioritizing, and analyzing actions through a series of ad hoc committees. We presented this report on the status of our accomplishments, recommendations, and plans to the commissioners on April 2, 2008.
As you peruse our ad hoc committee summaries, we welcome you to contact any board or staff member to get questions answered and concerns raised. (Complete reports are available at your local senior center or library for the public.)
Working together for seniors,
Background - In January 2007, the CoA board initiated a self-assessment, conducted by objective outside consultants, to provide direction for formulating spending plans that address the greatest senior needs and to serve as a base line for measuring future improvement in CoA performance. The results yielded significant opportunity to expand and add programs and services and to improve the quality of what the CoA already offers. Over 60 potential actions were identified. Over 30 community senior stakeholders, commissioners and CoA board members met, with the unbiased assistance of the MSU County Extension Service, to prioritize the actions based on importance and achievability. The actions were then grouped into seven categories (reflected as areas of concern in the assessment) and ad hoc CoA board committees were appointed and, again, included a number of community stakeholders.
The committee recommendations, CoA board conclusions and ongoing work in progress are contained in this book. Behind each main tab is a summary of the committees' work including projected timing and costs identified to date.
· Convert four CENAs to full time, two in direct care and two in adult day services
Spring Clean-up Help
Notice to all Charlevoix County Seniors who have used the Sheriff's/Commission on Aging Community Service Work program for spring and fall cleanup in the past, or need assistance with lawn cleanup: The Sheriff is no longer able to provide this service.
The CoA offers spring and fall cleanup program assistance to reimburse senior households for the expense of this program. It's an income/sliding scale reimbursement program. This program works the same as the lawn mowing/snow plowing program.
Call the CoA office and give your name, address, and age, and ask for a lawn cleanup contract. We'll mail it to you. This determines the amount of reimbursement for which you are eligible.
Once signed up for this program, you may hire whom you want to rake your leaves and cleanup your lawn; this does not include other services such as tree or hedge trimming, rototilling gardens/flower beds, planting trees or shrubs, the cost of lawn bags, or removal of the debris.
You will need to first pay whomever you hire, and submit the receipt, along with your contract for reimbursement.