Be where you are; otherwise you will miss your life.” ~ Buddha

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Jots & Thoughts

By Roberta Goodwin…

Save the dates!!!!
All events Presented by the Tuolumne County Commission on Aging

2012 SENIOR EXPO~ The 3rd Annual Senior Expo is scheduled for June 13, 9AM – 2PM, Mother Lode Fairgrounds in Sonora.
This year’s theme is Explore, Learn, Connect.    The Expo features over 50 participants representing businesses, agencies and organizations from across the region providing information about:  Finance, Insurance, Legal, Caregiver Options, and social organizations. The stage will have entertainment all day with the 2012 Senior Idol contest being the main event.   Food is available for purchase.
New for 2012 – the Lions Eyemobile will be there from 8AM to 11AM for eye exams and hearing aid checks.
The focus of the event is to provide information and services to Seniors, Baby Boomers, Caregivers and Families.  This event is both fun and informative – come and see for yourself. Don’t miss this information packed day! For more information go to: http://www.seniorfair.com

NEW DATE: 2012 SENIOR VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR AWARDS ~ The SENIOR VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR AWARDS ceremony is scheduled for July 12, 11AM – 12PM, in the Board of Supervisors Chambers, 4th floor, 2 Green St., Sonora. Don’t miss this opportunity to honor or community’s senior volunteers.

2012 CENTENARIAN AWARDS ~ The 2012 CENTENARIAN AWARDS ceremony is scheduled for October 3, 11AM – 12PM, Tuolumne County Senior Center. Don’t miss this opportunity to honor our community’s Centenarian Society members and meet the County’s newest residents reaching the 100 years young milestone.

and more….

√ Announcing! The GRADUATION ceremony of the Inaugural Class of Leadership Tuolumne Seniors will be held Friday, May 18. For more info or to RSVP, call Patty Penwell at 532-8583. Congratulations to the participants and to the LTS committee for their fine work.

√ MOTORIZED SCOOTER UPDATE, from Roberta Goodwin:
Our previous post related the situation on their seemingly forever broken motorized cart issue. If you remember, I both called and wrote a letter to the district manager in Modesto. In it, I suggested that the Sonora store was probably losing a good deal of money from the area’s disabled seniors who need to use it to get to the pharmacy and shop in their store. I recently got a call back from the District Manager who relayed the message that a new cart was on its way. One for our side, hey?

√From Sandi Fitzpatrick, the Executive Director of the California Commission on Aging office in Sacramento: an article on ADHC Clients and the transition process, entitled “Where Do They Go Now?”… See: http://www.healthycal.org/?s=Where+Do+They+Go+Now%3F+

√ Computer training classes: are available locally for seniors and are provided by various local agencies, locations, trainers.
Last we looked, an organization called “”California CONNECTS” sponsored by ATCAA and other organizations and offered at various locations throughout the Mother Lode. The low cost classes are taught by a man named Bob Ingalls, and one “Ms. Reinecke.”.
(The Tuolumne County Commission on Aging is currently compiling a current and comprehensive list of “senior-friendly” service providers. Stay tuned.)
It is advised to check your copy of the Union Democrat for details, dates, and contact info. The opportunities provided by using a computer and the internet are numerous: A senior can pay bills online, saving postage and trips to the post office; using email and Facebook can help with isolation and loneliness; learning and using a computer’s various programs “exercises” the mind, and affords other advantages. As far as cost goes, computers cost far less than just a few years ago, and donated computers are available from certain local agencies. One would be well-advised to call around and ask. As well, keep in mind that when a family member or friend upgrades their computer, they might be willing to part with their old one, frequently still in good running order.

√ Scam report from AARP Outreach & Service a piece entitled “Affinity Fraud”… and how to avoid being a victim of these predators. See: http://www.aarp.org/money/scams-fraud/info-01-2009/affinity_fraud.html

“Legal Matters” ~ ~ ~ ~
Here are some of the matters affecting seniors that the Tuolumne County Commission on Aging is currently following and concerned with (but NOT necessarily endorsing – see our disclaimer at the bottom of our blog).

1. Silver Alert SB 1047: proposed by Sen. Elaine Alquist (D-San Jose) – was recently passed… Almost 600,000 individuals in California have Alzheimer’s disease. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, that number will grow to more than 1.1 million by 2030, and 6 in 10 people with Alzheimer’s will wander away from their homes or care facilities at some point. People with Alzheimer’s often lose their cognitive ability to remember when to eat and drink or protect themselves from extreme weather. Silver Alert would be similar to the successful Amber Alert program for children. More on it from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silver_Alert … A Silver Alert is a public notification system in the United States to broadcast information about missing persons – especially seniors with Alzheimer’s disease, dementia or other mental disabilities – in order to aid in their return. Silver Alerts use a wide array of media outlets—such as commercial radio stations, television stations, and cable TV—to broadcast information about missing persons. Silver Alerts also use variable-message signs on roadways to alert motorists to be on the lookout for missing seniors.
2. SB 810: as per – http://www.democraticunderground.com/101440504
As of Tuesday Jan 31, 2012 “Today SB 810, “Medicare for All” single payer legislation, was killed on the California Senate Floor.
More about the bill from this website: http://californiaonecare.org/learn-more/sb-810/sb-810-overview
3. AB 1525: Financial Elder Abuse: Money Transmitters sponsored by Assembly member Michael Allen)… This bill requires that money wire transfer services be included in the definition of mandatory reporters of suspected financial elder abuse.
4. AB 2374: sponsored by Assembly member Roger Hernandez. Prohibits a consumer credit card reporting agency from charging a person who is 65 years old or older a fee when placing a security freeze on his or her credit report.
5. AB 1648: Brownley: The California Domestic Workers Bill of Rights, ftp://leginfo.public.ca.gov/pub/03-04/bill/sen/sb_1601-1650/sb_1648_cfa_20040618_120723_asm_comm.html

Did YOU Know? For your better living…

1. Area 12 Agency on Aging: This agency’s helpful staff provides services to more than 11,000 seniors in five counties: Alpine, Amador, Calaveras, Mariposa and Tuolumne. Services include information and assistance, caregiver support, nutrition, fitness, Medicare counseling and much more. The agency is headquartered in Sonora, at 19074 Standard Rd. Contact Area 12 at (209) 532-6272 or (800) 510-2020, http://www.area12.org
‘Tis the Season: one of Area 12’s season appropriate services is help with fire clearance. Call 532-6272 and ask about their “Chore” program, or ask them in general how they can help you with your other living challenges.

2. PG&E’s low-income program: PG&E has a low-income program called “The Energy Savings Assistance Program” and they partner locally with Sears to bring new refrigerators to folks. According to an installer I talked to named “Mike” … he and his crew make about 10 stops a day in the county to bring free brand-new refrigerators. His clients run to – he estimates – about 70% seniors. As part of the program, the crew even picks up their old refrigerators (and refurbishes/recycles them). The service area extends from Mi-Wuk to Riverbank, more or less, as he explained. Other features of the program include what they term “Improvements to your house, apartment or mobile home including compact fluorescent lights, caulking, showerheads, minor home repair and more.” To find out more about the program and whether you’re eligible, or if someone you KNOW is eligible, go to: http://www.pge.com/myhome/customerservice/financialassistance/energysavingsassistanceprogram  or call 800-989-9744.

3. Senior Services Directory:  Pick up this handy 24-page guide to local senior services at the sheriff’s Community Service Unit office in The Junction Shopping Center. Published by the nonprofit Senior Resource Service (SRS), it includes contact information for everything from health care and housing to transportation and emergency services – “anything a senior might need,” says Judy Finley, SRS president. A complete version of the directory (61 pages) is available online at the Friends and Neighbors website, www.tcfan.net  under the home-page link titled “Resources.”

4. “REACH” or “Relief for Energy Assistance through Community Help” is a program provided by PG&E and administered by the Salvation Army to help folks with delinquent electricity bills.
This from Catherine Driver: “We are working with our local Salvation Army to provide help to elders in need of assistance with their PG&E bills. We will be helping those 62 and over while Salvation Army will work with those under 62. (We will help in the case of a participant in the OE program, regardless of age.) Our part, like the Salvation Army’s, is to assist in filling out the needed paperwork and making sure all appropriate paperwork is included (i.e. PG&E bills, proof of age, etc.). We then call PG&E to make the ‘pledge’ and then fax the paperwork to Salvation Army in San Francisco. We can be reached at 532-7632 and Salvation Army can be reached at 588-1986. Catherine Driver, Engagement Coordinator, Older Adult Outreach & Engagement Program.”

5. Minor Home Repair: Area 12 Agency on Aging offers a program for eligible county seniors “designed to assist seniors over 60 who have home repair problems they cannot resolve which threaten health & safety.” To be eligible, you must: be 60 years of age or older; reside in Amador, Calaveras, Tuolumne, and Mariposa Counties; live in your own home. Typical repairs include… (among others) hard to turn faucets; leaky toilets; door knob repair; install grab bars; repair doors and windows; ramp repair.
Call Area 12 Today for more information on how you can arrange for needed home repairs 209-532-6272… Or go to: http://www.area12.org/support.aspx. Also, you can view their website at: http://www.area12.org

The Tuolumne County Commission on Aging… encourages and welcomes visitors to our meetings and we have vacancies at the moment, so we welcome any interested parties to apply. Attendance at our meetings is recommended to find out if you want to participate. Please come to our meetings and see what we’re about! In future, we will be blogging with even more information on matters of interest to county seniors so stay tuned! And please feel free to let us know YOUR ideas for events or forums that you want to see! We actively solicit your comments. As always, you may contact the Tuolumne County Commission on Aging by email: aging2010@gmail.com

Commission on Aging Meeting & Events Calendar 2012

Please also go to MyMotherlode.com Community Events Calendar to see our upcoming events: http://www.mymotherlode.com/community/events

The Commission appears on a regular basis before the Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors in order to update them on Commission activities.
(Note re-meeting dates: Sometimes holidays and other events force us to change the day; emailing us at aging2010@gmail.com is always recommended.)

* COA General Meetings, 1:30PM, 2nd Monday each month, at Area 12 Agency on Aging, 19074 Standard Road., Conf. Rm C, Standard CA

*COA Executive Board meetings, 1:00PM,  1st Monday each month, at the Senior Center 540 Greenley Rd, Sonora CA

* COA Public Relations committee meetings, 12:00PM,  1st Wednesday each month, at Interfaith, 18500 Striker Ct., Sonora CA

* COA Legislative committee meetings, 10:30AM,  2nd Thursday each month, at Area 12 Agency on Aging, 19074 Standard Road., Conf. Rm C, Standard CA

* COA Education Committee meetings, 1:30PM,  3rd Thursday each month, Sonora Crossroads Shopping Center, in the Prudential 2nd Floor Conference Room, 133 Old Wards Ferry Rd # G  Sonora, CA

2012 Speakers’ schedule
May – Sam Taylor, Senior Youth Partnership
June – Valerie Farley, ATCAA
July – TBD
August – Dick Pland
September – John Gray, in Groveland

All COA meetings are open to the public. Please come and give us your ideas, concerns, and information regarding senior issues.

In future, we will blog with even more information on matters of interest to county seniors so stay tuned! And please feel free to let us know YOUR ideas for events or forums that you want to see! We actively solicit your comments. You may contact the Tuolumne County Commission on Aging by email at aging2010@gmail.com

To go to:
Area 12 Agency on Aging’s website, go here: http://www.area12.org
Little House website, go here: http://thelittlehouse.org
Friends and Neighbors website go here: http://seniorfan.com

THANK YOU for reading our blog! Editor Roberta Goodwin

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