North Shore Senior Center Keeps Older Adults And Their Families ConnectedJune 30, 2020
NORTHFIELD, Ill. – During the last three months, North Shore Senior Center has successfully created a virtual community of support, socialization and enrichment for older adults and their families. From online Lifelong Learning classes to virtual support through Senior and Family Services, Senior Options and House of Welcome (HOW) Adult Day Services, Center members, participants and clients are staying connected to the community and services they’ve come to depend on since 1956.
According to the wife of a participant in HOW’s virtual memory loss program, “These groups have been providing structure and purpose in my husband’s life. He really enjoys seeing both the staff and other participants. It’s providing him the socialization he wants and needs.”
HOW’s Mind Matters early memory loss program will begin meeting in person in small groups in July. For now, other HOW programs—daily group activities, the Alzheimer’s Family Support Group and Memory Café will continue to meet virtually.
Beginning July 6, Lifelong Learning will begin offering a limited number of programs and activities onsite, while continuing to offer many classes online. Advanced registration is required for all programs–online and onsite. In this initial phase of reopening the Center, only those registered for an activity or class will be allowed to enter the building–no walk-ins will be permitted. All guests will be subjected to a health screening and be required to wear a face covering at all times while inside the building.
For families needing social services, Senior & Family Services will continue to provide assessments, care management, benefits counseling and Adult Protective Services remotely until it’s safe to meet with clients in person. Support groups will continue to meet virtually as well.
Said one Senior & Family Services client, “It is difficult to express how much my family and I appreciate your help, support and time with our current hardship. We truly thank you for all you have done for us and others like us. I am overwhelmed with happiness to have the opportunity to use my oven again. Thank you for everything.”
The Center’s affiliate North Shore Senior Options remains committed to delivering money management, private care management services and counseling sessions virtually. “Right now many people are struggling with loneliness and isolation, and may become depressed or anxious,” said Senior Options Director Cynthia Phon, LSCW. “Oftentimes, talking to someone can help. Our experienced counselors are accepting new clients and using telehealth for face-to-face meetings.”
About North Shore Senior Center:
North Shore Senior Center is headquartered in Northfield and serves and engages more than 23,000 older adults and their families each year throughout Chicago’s northern suburbs. This nationally-accredited organization offers a comprehensive suite of services, including social services, specialized care for people living with dementia, private care management, educational and wellness programs, money management, counseling and volunteer opportunities. The Center’s continuum of services provides for older adults from the most independent to those needing more support.