Thursday, December 31, 2009

Aging in Place in 2009

When I look back at 2009, it's easy to think about how hard the year has been. The recession has had a decidedly negative impact on so many. Yet, I feel really satisfied with one aspect of the past year -- the progress we've made with Aging in Place in Darien.

1. We introduced half-price taxi vouchers for seniors and the disabled. Now seniors can purchase the vouchers at Darien Town Hall and use them for rides on Everyready Taxi. The ride is then only half price.

2. Gallivant (the van for seniors and disabled) board members on our transportation committee helped us with research into area solutions for senior transportation, and in the process, became more energized themselves.
They are doing a new strategic plan, will hire a dispatcher and may purchase another vehicle.

3. AIP conducted a survey among seniors and learned key information that will guide us in our strategic planning. We had an amazing response rate.

4. We held a luncheon with a great speaker on arthritis. Over 100 people attended. Clearly, our seniors want to learn as much as they can about healthy aging.

5. AIP in Darien now has 170 members.

6. We've learned a lot about pros and cons of starting a nonprofit and about the other aging in place organizations in our area and across the nation. And we've continued to learn about agencies and for-profits in our area that help seniors.

7. We have a terrific working relationship with the new head of the Darien Senior Center, Beth Paris.

8. We are forming great plans for 2010 -- all strategically based. Keep checking back for more news.

We are looking forward to a productive new year. I hope you are, too.

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