Aging Well Boulder County | Issue 21 | June 2017

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Aging Well in Boulder County

Issue 21 | June 2017 | You are not too old and it is not too late


New Date for Healthcare Policy Event

CHI Event July 2017

Due to a freak snow storm back in May, we had to postpone this event until July 28th. Join the Colorado Health Institute, BCAAA, and TRU PACE for a morning presentation and discussion on the latest in healthcare policy, and potential impacts on seniors in Colorado. 

Joe Hanel, Manager of Public Policy Outreach for the Colorado Health Institute, will provide an update on Federal healthcare policy and take questions from the audience. 

This is a free public event. A light breakfast, generously provided by TRU PACE, will also be served. 

Please register here

Note: this is our rescheduled event from May


Welcome New Staff!

We recently welcomed three new staff to BCAAA. Launa Peeters-Graehl (below) is our new Programs Analyst, assisting us with service and program evaluations. Launa comes to us with a background in social science research, having studied and taught psychology at the university level, and conducting field research and program evaluations for the California Center for Rural Policy.

Launa

We also welcome Helen Vanderwerken (below left) and Janet Morrison (below right) who are helping launch a new meal program in Lyons. Helen previously volunteered with the a Lyons meal program, and was an accountant in her pre-retirement life. Janet, a Senior Tax Worker, is driving meals to Lyons from our caterer in Boulder. She is a retired elementary school teacher and is fluent in Spanish. 

Lyons lunch staff

Caregiving Symposium a Huge Success

CS 2017

On May 16, we co-sponsored (with TRU PACE) the 12th annual Caregiving Symposium. Hundreds of family caregivers, service providers, staff, and volunteers attended the event, learning about a variety of helpful options at the resource fair of 90+ local organizations. Attendees participated in workshops on topics that included dementia care, caregiver self-care, legal and financial advice, loss of intimacy, veterans’ benefits, hospice services, and home modifications. 

The Caregiving Symposium was made possible by the financial support of 37 business sponsors, the contribution of time and expertise by 24 workshop presenters, extensive outreach provided by agencies throughout the county, and the hard work of our staff and volunteers.  

Visit our website for more information about caregiver programs in Boulder County. 


Want to Know BCAAA Better? See our Annual Report

2016 annual report

Get a comprehensive view of who we are and what we’ve done in the last year: click here to view our 2016 Annual Report. 


Our Dental Program is Improving Lives

We recently completed our first program evaluation of our Senior Dental Program for Low Income Seniors, a HCPF-funded program promoting the health and welfare of low-income seniors by providing access to dental care. BCAAA serves as an administrator for the program, in partnership with community intake points and dentist offices. 

The results of our evaluation revealed significant positive changes and outcomes after clients receive dental services: 

  • 96% of clients wouldn't have accessed dental services without this program. 
  • 95% of clients are satisfied or very satisfied with the program
  • Mouth pain has decreased for 91% of clients. 
  • 63% report an increase in their general health. 
  • 58% have improved their oral health habits.

Learn about the importance oral health in aging


No Fare Contest

no fare contest

Boulder County has won a grant to increase transit ridership in Lafayette by providing free fares to the city's residents and employees. To encourage public participation in the development of the program, Boulder County has created an open competition, called "No Fare Contest", to generate innovative ideas on how to get the most people to ride transit. 

Boulder County has $100,000 to implement the program - and to increase interest and excitement, cash prizes for the top three program ideas are available!

  • $3,000 for 1st Place
  • $1,500 for 2nd Place
  • $500 for 3rd Place

More information about the contest and how to apply can be found here.


Keep Your Cool

heat wave

Summer is almost here, and it’s important to take precautions in case of extreme heat. The following steps can help prepare you to handle periods of extreme heat and the associated risks:

  • Be watchful for signs of heat stroke and dehydration: shallow breathing, a lack of perspiration, dizziness, dry mouth, and headaches.
  • Check on family, friends, and neighbors who do not have air conditioning, especially those who spend much of their time alone. 
  • Plan to be temporarily self-sufficient if the electricity goes out.
  • Make provisions for medications that require refrigeration, and plan arrangements to get to a cooling center, if needed.
  • Think about what you need to maintain your health, safety, and independence. Build a kit that includes specialized items you may need, such as wheelchair batteries, oxygen, and medications. Include non-perishable food and water, items for service animals and pets, and anything else you might need.

For more information about extreme heat preparedness and tools, go to ready.gov/heat and cdc.gov.


Volunteers Making a Difference

Vol Appr lunch 2017

We know our volunteers do great work, and we always appreciate hearing it from our clients. Two recent letters stand out, one from a caregiver who receives assistance through the Respite & Companion Volunteer program (RCVP), and one from a person who worked with our Medicare Counselors.

RCVP matches volunteers with older adults experiencing social isolation or compromised health. The volunteer visits with their match for two hours a week. We received this letter from the daughter of the older adult he visits, a man who has dementia: Thanks for visiting and playing cards with my dad each week! He is always in a good mood after your visit. You provide him companionship and provide a little respite for us. We feel blessed to have you in our lives! Thanks for everything!

Medicare Counselor volunteers and staff help older adults, people with disabilities, and their caregivers navigate and understand Medicare. One recent client wrote: I am sending my deepest appreciation and gratitude … for your help yesterday. I know you went above and beyond for me, which makes your help even more precious. I will never be able to adequately tell you how much it will always mean to me, your guidance and experience, and your kindness and patience, to get me through the paperwork and the phone call. To get me through my own fear and confusion, with gentle reassurances.  you are angels. Thank you.

We, in turn, are grateful for our volunteers for their invaluable assistance. Interested in volunteering? Please contact Kari at 720-864-6526 or visit our webpage


Falls Prevention Week to Receive National Award

We are excited to announce that our Falls Prevention Week will receive an Aging Innovations & Achievement Award from the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a). Each September BCAAA's Wellness Specialist, Melissa Pruitt, coordinates a collaborative week of activities designed to educate the public on ways to reduce risks of falling - and have some fun while doing it. In 2016, we coordinated more than 40 events around the county! 

Launched in 2005, the awards program recognizes programs that exemplify innovation and sound management practices. The award will be presented at the 2017 n4a Annual Conference in Savanah, GA in July.

Watch for more information about Falls Prevention Week, September 18 – 22, coming soon!