May 2, 2016 deadline is approaching. If you are a Maplewood or South Orange resident, 60 years of age or older and have not yet completed and submitted a copy of the senior survey, now is the time to do so. This is also a good time to spread the word to friends and neighbors in the target population who may not know that the survey is being conducted. If there are services you would like to see kept, modified, added, or even dropped now is the time to contribute your ideas and feedback. Any resulting changes in available senior services will be only as good as the comments received.
cody said:I would never have interpreted it that way, Joan. I thought it worked like all the other email systems I'm used to, where the status shows the recipient's actions, not the sender's. Thank you for the clarification.
If you send an email, you can't tell in your "sent items" whether the email has been read by the recipient or not. At least not in any email system I've ever used.
I could tell when I sent an e-mail at work if the e-mail went to someone else on our WAN; but, not if the addressee was outside of our network.
I've also been able to tell if an email was received, as long as it was within the same network. AOL gave a status update and the work emails I used did, too. I was surprised that MOL didn't do this. I don't understand the point of the MOL message column "Is Read" with yes or no under it if it doesn't indicate whether the recipient read the email. I know I (as the sender) read it - sort of confusing to have this there, if it doesn't show what it seems to be saying it shows. It looks as if it is showing a status update when you look at your sent PMs.
I'll be attending a focus group meeting on Tuesday to discuss senior services (evaluation of current and suggestions for future). If anyone reading this has feedback they would like brought up at the meeting, please post here or send me a PM prior to Tuesday AM.
Focus group session was highly structured but touched on most of the points of concern. Participants for the most part were highly knowledgeable and very active in the community for many years. Most agreed on the responses given by the group.
What were some of the suggestions? Which of those might be implemented?
Comments more than suggestions at this point. Here are some that I recollect now. There were quite a few others. Group for the most part was highly vocal, well informed, and in total agreement on what is needed.
Town has to do a better job of reaching out to seniors who are not self-advocating in searching out available information and resources.
Mechanism is needed to check on seniors living alone to make sure they are OK.
Infrastructure improvements are needed to make streets safer: better lighting at night, repair of severely heaved sidewalks.
Town-sponsored events need to be more all inclusive: something for adults in addition to the face painting, inflatable games, petty zoo approach.
Need for improving public transportation available to seniors: more accessible bus; expanded hours, especially weekends and evenings.
Existing housing stock is a real block to aging in place. Private homes have too many stairs both leading to the entrance and to upper floors. Not enough available rentals/condos that meet seniors needs: often inaccessible, apartments too small, shortage of affordable housing suitable for seniors on fixed incomes.
Making seniors more aware of volunteer opportunities, clubs, organizations available in the community.
Expanding inter-generational activities - seniors to kids, kids to seniors. Group found proposed senior center to isolating.
Need for hard copy directory of available goods and services of special interest to seniors: who do I contact when I need ___ ?
If you want to start a discussion here by all means lets do it. The more brain storming the better. If you have specific suggestions, Annette DePalma would be a good person to contact.
I apologize if someone already suggested this, but what about a sign up for the town to alert specific people if your tax bill does not get paid on time? I think PSEG has something like this. By happenstance we just learned that an elderly neighbors taxes had not been paid by the beginning of this month. And this is a neighbor we have been concerned about. So we are going to let the family know.
Interesting concept. I would suggest contacting the TC, town administrator, and/or town financial officer and making this suggestion. It could apply to anyone who whose mortgage company is not handling real property tax payments, not just seniors, and could be of benefit to both the delinquent home owner and the town. This is something that could be implemented quickly and easily, existing legislation permitting, and should not have to wait for the results of a multi-year study focusing on making the town more senior-friendly.
Just received the following email:
SOMA - Becoming Age-Friendly Communities
Please join us to discuss services for older adults.
Our goal is to hear more about how our towns can address the changing needsof residents as they age in our communities.
Date: Sunday, June 5, 2016Time: 2:00 PM to 4:00 PMLocation: The Woodland60 Woodland Road, Maplewood NJ
Light refreshments will be served.
Funded by:Grotta Fund for Senior Care
The June 5th meeting at the Woodland is open to anyone who wants to provide input or just hear what others have to say about ways in which seniors can better age in place. Maplewood and South Orange have long had the problem of seniors leaving town due to high taxes, lack of housing availability suitable for downsizing, health issues which make maintenance of a single family home too difficult, need to live in a place that provides better support for a senior population, desire/need to be closer to children/grandchildren, etc. Maplewood and South Orange probably can't help much with the closer to family issue; but, there should be ways in which the towns can help address the other reasons for exodus listed above.
Exodus of seniors is everyone's problem. This trend results in higher taxes because empty nesters leaving are generally replaced by families with young children, thus putting more strain on the school system. Seniors form the backbone of volunteerism in our two communities, a win/win for both the seniors and community. Younger adults are often too busy with job pressures and family demands to fill the volunteer gap which results or simply have other priorities when it comes to spending what little spare time they may have. Our local service organizations are literally dying out. The Maplewood First Aid Squad is effectively gone. Other volunteer services we have come to depend on are not far behind.
Please come to the June 5th meeting if you can and share your experience and insight. Even if you are not a senior now, with luck you will be a senior one day. Wouldn't you like the option of successfully aging in place to be a real consideration now or when your own time comes to make this decision?
For me it is an easy walk to the building. However many seniors don't drive anymore and are dependent on friends and the minimal shuttle service. Is there going to be any transportation afforded
by the Township to help make this thing viable?
Don't know; I'll be walking too. Town says they are working on it. Biggest problem is apt to be finding a qualified driver to drive the bus.
joan_crystal said:Don't know; I'll be walking too. Town says they are working on it. Biggest problem is apt to be finding a qualified driver to drive the bus.
So Orange is using its shuttles to bring people. What do they know that we don't?
How 'bout a couple of "Death Panel" days? No, seriously, would it be possible, once or twice a year to have presentations by a physician and maybe a lawyer to explain options at end of life? This could be accompanied by a legal form where we can choose limits to our medical care and have it documented?
Can someone list the services, programs, and events that the town now provides for seniors? On the M.O.L. calendar, there are two events that might be of interest to seniors. Are they the only events offered?
Formerlyjerseyjack said:How 'bout a couple of "Death Panel" days? No, seriously, would it be possible, once or twice a year to have presentations by a physician and maybe a lawyer to explain options at end of life? This could be accompanied by a legal form where we can choose limits to our medical care and have it documented? Can someone list the services, programs, and events that the town now provides for seniors? On the M.O.L. calendar, there are two events that might be of interest to seniors. Are they the only events offered?
The list of services and programs will certainly be included in the program
End of life options could be presented. But the subject of course is sensitive
It is something we all need to address but many do not want to do so
The Grotta fund for senior care is sponsoring the event
They can be queried about the subject probably for a future event
--sorry for not being clear. Could more senior related events be posted on the M.O.L. Main Calendar?
Regarding end of life decisions, that could be a once time per year event, depending on turn-out.
Jack: (In reply to your first post)
The problem isn't lack of programs on topics of interest to seniors so much as lack of publicity informing seniors that such programs exist. Fortunately, there are several ways for a senior to learn about these activities in time to attend the program(s) that interest them.
One way is to subscribe to the Senior Spotlight, a monthly newsletter put out by the Maplewood Department of Recreation and sent to members of Maplewood's Senior Club. You have a household member who belongs to this club and receives the publication. Ask to see a copy. This month's issue features information on programs on financial literacy and balance issues/avoiding falls; adult health clinic dates and services; a course offering on rejuvenating retirement; and information on adult health screenings offered by the town.
Since you, unlike many seniors, use the Internet, you have other information sources available. Get on the email list for Senior Share, a senior services advocacy group. Author has a close friend who can help you with that. Send him a PM with your contact information and he can pass it along or check with the household member mentioned above who is on that mailing list.
Request email blasts from the town, especially from the health and recreation departments. That should keep you up to date on town sponsored programs.
Visit the Maplewood Library. Check out their display of flyers on activities being held there and elsewhere in town. Of late, there have been several such activities of interest to seniors.
Both Maplewood and South Orange have a senior club which sponsors programs of the type you mention. If you want to see a program on a specific topic, you can contact the Maplewood Senior Club Adviser at 973-763-0750 and ask for Michelle; attend the Senior Share picnic on June 18 (the same household member mentioned above is going) and present your program idea to the group officer in charge of programming; or speak with the town's health officer.
Formerlyjerseyjack said:--sorry for not being clear. Could more senior related events be posted on the M.O.L. Main Calendar? Regarding end of life decisions, that could be a once time per year event, depending on turn-out.
Events appearing on the MOL calendar seem to be limited to those posted by the sponsor(s) or those events. This is not something Dave/Jamie research on their own as a rule. See my above post for some information sources presently available. It does take some initial digging/effort to get on mailing lists and such.
author said: The list of services and programs will certainly be included in the programThe Grotta fund for senior care is sponsoring the eventThey can be queried about the subject probably for a future event
The list of services and programs available to seniors will not be included in the program on June 5th. The purpose of this meeting is to determine what seniors need to be able to age in place in Maplewood and South Orange. Since a single listing/information source for senior services/activities does not presently exist, this meeting would be a good place to advocate for such a listing.
The Grotta Fund grant is limited to a study to determine ways in which Maplewood and South Orange can become more age-friendly. They will not be holding any events. The meeting on June 5 is being run by a consultant group hired by Maplewood and South Orange to develop information that can go into the formulation of their recommendations for ways in which this aim can be achieved. Hope is to use the results of this study to obtain additional funding for an implementation phase.
See my above post for some of the various sources that can be queried regarding future programming of special interest to seniors. I am sure my above listing is not all-inclusive. We do need a single source that can compile this information on a regular basis.
I have been advised there will be no transportation support from Maplewood Twp. There might be from South Orange for us but that is being explored
The Art Tour will be the same day in the same place so parking might be somewhat limited
People should be prepared to car pool where possible
Determining what Seniors need to age in place and not providing information as to what is available from
the Township seems strange
There will be several Artist Studio Tour venues in the Village, so I would expect parking to be very hit or miss, especially with the active construction site within a block or two of the Woodland. Best advice, if one is driving would be to plan on getting there early and looking for parking north and west of the Woodland.
from Robert Roe: Thursday May 26 7:00pm Main Library: A program on Medicare Fraud is being presented.
Thanks for posting that.
Flyers for the June 5 event are available at the circulation desk at the Main Library.
Do we have Meals on Wheels?
Not through the town. This one of the topics that could be raised at the June 5th forum at The Woodland (see above). I don't recall it being raised specifically in the questionnaire or in the focus group I attended.
Perhaps I can answer some of the questions as related to meals on wheels and other social services in the town. A number of members of Map,ewood Senior Share began researching services about 2 years ago. The information was gleaned through our searches of what is available through the county and other neighboring towns outside of the county. Sage in Summit provided the most help with a full range of services . In Essex County , as pointed out above Chrill handles Meals on Wheels and the Congregate Nutrition Program .
Meals on Wheels provides meals to those who are homebound at a sliding scale. There are two plans that recipients can sign on for, one being one meal a day and the other three meals a day. There is also an option for those who are not totally homebound to sign up for. The towns that were serviced were limited,but more funding for the program made Maplewood eligible for those services. A visit to Chrill headquarters where the food was prepped verified this point .
A visit to Sage in Summit established as well a way for MEALS ON wheels to be delivered to Maplewood, despite the fact that they are in Union County . The prices remain the same, since it is a federal program .
Each of these two agencies provide a congregate nutrition program . The town would as well be eligible for that as well, with conditions having been discussed with the County representative in Verona. Basically a clean site with a working kitchen are needed with a list of at least 12 recipients who will attend . Other services of a trained Senior worker are included for the site. The fee is $3 and the number of days a week can be customized to fit the vendor .(This program was in place in Maplewood at the now demolished Church on Boyden Ave, owned by Morrow Memorial) In looking for a site there are possibilities as many churches do have facilities . We can put this in place with little effort and connecting to the agencies ..who we found to be friendly and caring workers .
Sage also offers the services of a trained social worker to towns near to Summit, was gleaned through conversations that we had with Sage in the Fall of 2015.again we found that all the employees here were so helpful and ready to help..even with ground level work.
As for meal options, it would involve an effort on the part of the town itself or a religious organization to undertake this task ..note that the agency involved assumes all of the coordination of meals , from cooking to serving to clean up , with little assistance from the receiving agency besides providing the space and the clients. In SO at the two Senior Housing Centers, congregate meals are served twice a week ...it is open to those who are not residents for a $3.00 fee, through the County and its Chrill arrangements
Many other services are as well available to the township.This involves the investment of time and energy and having the knowledge of what is needed, i.e. the need for a trained dedicated Senior Service professional. Having activities within a Rec Dept.or Health Dept does not constitute a Senior Service program. A dedicated Senior Dept. would be an answer.
With our rising senior population, and their issues, namely housing, finances, health and transportation, we suggest a multi tiered program. One that addresses the needs of all citizens and not only those who responded to a survey . It means creating a full service Senior Dept , that of a certified Senior professional and a Senior Advisory Board with power to develop a well thought out Department for Maplewood .
Now back to the Grant ...The survey's audience did not extend to those who are the neediest; for that reason we may not find their issues covered . In the beginning of the study, it was noted that a comprehensive outreach by Seton Hall would identify all of the seniors in town; that was never done . My conclusion is that the survey results as well as its conclusions may not recognize the group of those who are not financially able and in need of more services .. Hopefully the session on June 5 will be open to the real possibilities of citizens in town who may not have responded to the survey and are in need of services. (MSS is exploring a system to identify more seniors and their needs)..it can be done .!
I believe that we are eligible for more . We, Maplewood Senior Share , have explored options and find that we are lacking much, primarily the recognition that recreation and sports do not meet the needs of Seniors. That a well planned Dept that addresses Senior needs in comprehensive manner is the avenue to follow. A grant program offering $35,000 a year does not do answer that need...it may provide a professional to begin direction .
What we need is a shift in attitude and focus to provide seniors with the services they need ...housing, health, financial, and transportation among them. Services for those neediest as well as for those who can fend for themselves.Within an effective Social Services Dept. and using the existing health and recreation Dept's, we may find that all of the needs and all seniors are addressed ...seniors who wish to age in Place will be able to age in place
I invite all of you , seniors, those about to be Seniors and all of you knowing the issues seniors face, to attend the event on June 5 at the Woodland. Together we can establish a group that is able and committed to facilitating the establishment of a fully focused and comprehensive Senior Dept. in Maplewood, a town that we helped grow.
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