Life is a gift to you. The way you live your life is your gift to those who come after.” ~ Unknown

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 ~
1. 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.
2.Transportation available, call: 532-0404.

Don’t miss this information packed day! For more information go to: www.seniorfair.com

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,TuolumneCountySeniorCenter. 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….

A memorial service for our former Chairperson Nick Cretan was held at 3 pm, May 27 at the Adventist Church in Sonora. WE MISS HIM and always will.

Leadership Tuolumne Seniors: The celebration/awards BBQ held on May 18th was covered by Lenore Rutherford of the Union Democrat and in the Friday May 25 issue, her piece entitled “Graduates praise county’s Leadership Tuolumne Seniors” enumerated some of the comments by the participants. Samples include: From Rex Whisnand: “This program far exceeded my expectations… it was energizing, fun, educational and extremely well run.”  From Mary Freer: “I feel very blessed to have had this experience, to learn first hand about all the ways a person, seniors in particular, can get involved in helping make a difference which in turn makes a better community.”  From Ted Michaud: “This has been revitalization to my current encore career.  I have taken many lessons and potential relationships back…”

MOTORIZED SCOOTER UPDATE, from Roberta Goodwin: The store manager “Mitch” reports that not one, but TWO, motorized carts were delivered by CVS Corporate, and are now available for store customers.  Who says we seniors can’t get things done and buck big business?  Providing a little feedback, and pointing out how many of this county’s seniors – such as yours truly!  –  need these things to shop in their store, equals dollars going out the door if they can’t come in and shop without a cart, well, sure did the trick this time.  Needless to say, Mitch is ecstatic and so are we.

  Computer training classes: are available locally for seniors and are provided by various local agencies, locations, trainers.  SEE OUR NEW TAB.

From Roberta Goodwin: A story from a friend of mine, a neighbor of mine at my house in Baja, and currently president of a Southern Californiacar club.  “About a year ago I got a call from a woman that wanted to me to help her get her car back from a mechanic that had it six years.  I took her to the mechanic about 50 miles from here and loaded it in my trailer and took it home for her.  Since then I have been helping her get it painted and get the chrome and interior done for her. She wants it restored so she can give it to her grandson eventually.  She joined the car club and attends the meetings and of course being Italian, she always helps with the refreshments.  I tried calling her yesterday about a decision on the car several times but she wasn’t home.  She called me back later and said she was celebrating her birthday.  Now here’s the part of the story that thrills me, it was her 93rd birthday. Can you imagine a woman joining a car club at age 92?  By the way, she purchased that car with her late husband, new in 1954 on the east coast so it has a lot of sentimental value.”

Legal Matters– updated as of June 1
By Luci Tyndall, commissioner, Tuolumne County Commission on Aging

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).

Here are a few of the bills to keep your eye on this year:

  • SB 1047- Establishes a missing person advisory called “Silver Alert” to protect persons suffering from dementia-related conditions and who as a result, might wander away from      home.
  • AB 2141 – Requires that a two-year punishment enhancement be added for identity theft from a victim aged 65  years or older.
  • AB 2374 – Prohibits a consumer credit card reporting agency from charging a person who is 65 years old or older a fee placing a security freeze on his/her credit report.

And remember, Senate Concurrent Resolution 32 (SCR 32) recognizing the contributions ofCalifornia’s senior volunteers was passed in 2011. The Resolution proclaims the month of May as “Senior Volunteer Month” inCalifornia. Senior Senators worked hard in making the recognition of senior volunteerism during the month of May a permanent celebratory event.

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. Lifeline: Lenore Rutherford of the Union Democrat, always conscious and writing about of senior living issues, had a May 21 piece in the UD entitled “Ambulance drivers urge lifeline users to keep in touch”.  In it, she reminds Lifeline users that it’s important to update your vacation plans or “away from home” plans.  When you go away and there’s no-one available to receive the monthly courtesy calls, it may initiate an unnecessary call to your house.  In the article, which quotes Joe Malin of Tuolumne County Ambulance, his company – or any designated “responder” – needs a “delegated” person (family members, friends, or neighbors) to take calls for them while the customer is away.  Lifeline users can easily notify Lifeline by pressing “their Lifeline buttons and telling the person who answers they will be gone and for how long.”  If the Lifeline user is a client of Sonora Oxygen and Medical Supply, the article says, it’s a good idea to notify them as well. 
  3. 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.
  4. 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.”
  5. 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 inSan 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.”
  6. 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

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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