Media Archive

CEO Announces Retirement from Sourcewise

Steve Schmoll, Chief Executive Officer of Sourcewise, is retiring this June, after an impressive 35 years of leading the organization. During Schmoll’s tenure, the agency brought such programs as Health Insurance Counseling and Care Management to Santa Clara County (SCC) and became the staffing agent to this county’s Public Authority.

A recipient of grants ranging from elder abuse prevention to comprehensive statewide data management, Sourcewise has continuously delivered on its mission to provide adults and their caregivers the tools and services they need to effectively navigate their health and life options. In addition, Sourcewise has received recognition at local and state levels for marketing, service delivery, and innovation.

SCC’s senior population has shifted dramatically in the past 35 years, putting pressure on the limited resources available for senior programs. Working on behalf of seniors, Schmoll built a network of service providers for those in need.

“As an aging champion, Steve has developed important initiatives,” stated Derrell Kelch, Executive Director–California Association for Area Agencies on Aging. He added, “His contributions to the aging network have been invaluable and have ensured support for aging programs that serve the most vulnerable seniors.”

Schmoll says Sourcewise would not be where it is without its strong, collaborative partnerships and the talented individuals who lead the delivery and administration to provide the direct services.

The Sourcewise Board of Directors thanks and congratulates Mr. Schmoll on an impeccable career and a well-deserved retirement.

View the Sourcewise history: www.mysourcewise.com/media-center/timeline.

Michal Mendoza is the President for the Sourcewise Board of Directors.

Older Adults Provide Medicare Counseling to Thousands

In observance of Older Americans Month, Sourcewise extends deep gratitude to the dedicated Health Insurance Counseling & Advocacy Program (HICAP) volunteer counselors who give tirelessly of their time to serve their fellow community members.

The majority of counseling services for Santa Clara County residents are provided by volunteers. In 2018, Sourcewise HICAP volunteers collectively served 1,180 individual clients. Sourcewise HICAP is currently comprised of 37 California state-registered volunteer counselors whose ages range from 60–86 years old and who actively serve at 33 counseling sites throughout Santa Clara County.

On March 29, 2019, Sourcewise HICAP recognized 14 dedicated volunteers for reaching key milestones in their years of service. Marcelo Espiritu, Sourcewise HICAP Director, presented each volunteer with a service pin and certificate on behalf of the California Department of Aging (CDA) and Sourcewise for their years of service ranging from 5 to over 20 years of service.

Barbara Purdy received special recognition from CDA for 21 years of service, acknowledging her selfless commitment and dedication to the Santa Clara County community.

Each May, the contributions of a growing population of older adults is celebrated. The Administration on Community Living leads our nation’s observance of Older Americans month, and this year’s theme focuses on the importance of contributing to the community.

“I get all teary-eyed when I talk about my counselors, because they do such a great job!” says Angelina Vallejo, Sourcewise HICAP’s Volunteer Coordinator, of volunteers she onboarded many years ago. “They are volunteers and yet they go above and beyond–they are special.”

Sourcewise HICAP counseling is free and available to eligible Santa Clara County residents; view our counseling sites at www.mysourcewise.com/appointments. Contact the Sourcewise Health Insurance Counseling & Advocacy Program: (408) 350-3200, option 2.

Mukoyama: Local Voice for Santa Clara County’s Most Vulnerable

Dedicating 54 years as a social worker caring for the most vulnerable, Wes Mukoyama, LCSW, continues to advocate tirelessly for Santa Clara County (SCC) seniors through his work as a California Senior Legislator (CSL), now in his second term.

Established in 1981, the non-partisan California Senior Legislature helps preserve and enhance the quality of life for older Californians and their families (https://4csl.org/).

As an active community member contributing to many SCC-based organizations, Mukoyama advocates for better links and communication/coordination between community services and the hospital as they expand.

“The importance of collaboration among care organizations is crucial for those in need,” Mukoyama says. He adds, “…coordinating services among Behavior Health, Medical Health and the Jail as well as Community-Based Organizations is an enormous task.”

Mukoyama also engages with spiritual and faith-based organizations to obtain grant monies to treat “ethnic minority groups, seniors, and LGBTQ populations who will not normally go to Behavioral Health for help.”

Among the list of eleven different local organizations, Mukoyama dedicates his time and passion to voluntary activities as a contributing member of the California Mental Health Spiritual Initiative; Blue Ribbon Commission on jail reform for SCC; Red Cross Disaster Mental Health; and Volunteer Facilitator for Yu-Ai Kai Japanese American Community Senior Service, and Sourcewise Advisory Council, among others.

Mukoyama’s work on the Sourcewise Advisory Council led him to an increased level of advocacy at the State-level as a CSL. In his capacity as a Legislator, Mukoyama says while he has not yet authorized legislation, he seeks to pass legislation that houses dementia and depression under the same treatment plan within mental health services.

At a local level, Sourcewise Advisory Council advises Sourcewise on which Older Americans Act services need attention in the community while also advocating on behalf of seniors and distributing information to the community (www.mysourcewise.com/advisory).

Opal Hern, 96, Bowls with Senior League in Cupertino

At age 96, Opal Hern never misses a day of bowling with her team: the Swinging Seniors, where Opal is the eldest among her bowling mates.

“I spend a lot of time in my apartment alone, and I like to talk to people and enjoy myself,” she said. “I love bowling! And that’s what life is all about!”

Socialization is an important aspect of maintaining a healthy life, especially as we age. “It’s important to act engaged in your environment, be it through learning, be it through social interaction, be it through exercise,” explains Denise Park, Psychologist and Director of the Productive Aging Laboratory at the Center for Brain Health at the University of Texas, Dallas.

Every Wednesday and Friday morning, the team Swinging Seniors rolls into the Homestead Bowl to compete with other senior leagues. The Homestead Bowl is a bowling center tucked away at the intersection of Homestead Road and Stelling Road in Cupertino, California. To complete one ‘play,’ it usually takes three games which can take two hours for a traditional bowling league.

At this bowling alley, age is just a number for these players. The youngest player on the senior league is 58, and the oldest player is 96 years of age. People of all ages can enjoy and benefit from participating in a bowling league where you can socialize with friends and teammates.

While some bowlers are serious competitors, some others are all about having a good time. Marie Doty, 84, said, “It’s just fun, fun, fun! If you have anything that’s bothering you, you come here and forget about it. It’s kind of your therapy."

Find recreational activities near you. Contact a Community Resource Specialist of Sourcewise: (408) 350-3200, option 1.

This article was originally published in http://www.ktvu.com/news/-senior-swingers-rule-on-cupertino-bowling-league-where-the-oldest-player-is-96#.XGMT5lPZV0A.email.

Downsize and Declutter

Lillian, 54, currently resides in San Jose and is caring for her mother who lives with dementia.

“My mother had thirty-year-old possessions, before moving in. She rarely downsized, and as her health declined she became unsettled at the thought of clearing out her unused belongings,” Lillian stated.

According to The Journals of Gerontology (2014), “Among people over age 70, about 30 percent of people reported they had done nothing over the past year to give away any belongings. And 80 percent in the same age group said they had sold nothing in the past 12 months.”

Downsizing and decluttering can happen at any point throughout the year; however, every person’s unique situation is different. Situations such as moving to a new place or first signs of declining health may spur the need to declutter and downsize.

Downsizing is possible when approached with an alternative solution to organization. An efficient guide to downsizing is using the “Four Pile Sorting Method’’.

To successfully use this method, a cleared space within the home could serve as a designated area for all sorted items.

Start Sorting and Get Organized:

Keep

Furniture, mementos, and other personal belongings when there is a committed receiver.

Sell

Speak with an appraiser or have a yard sell of valuable possessions, such as collectables or overstock; gently used furniture.

Donate

Unwanted items that can be reused such as kitchen appliances, clothes, electronics.

Garbage

Dispose properly of hazardous and beyond repair items.

Local donation and recycling centers are available to assist with downsizing. Contact a Community Resource Specialist of Sourcewise: (408) 350-3200, option 1.

Adobe Donates Wheelchairs to Sourcewise Clients

Sourcewise clients with mobility challenges received a special gift from Adobe this holiday season. As part of the Adobe Enterprise Solution Services Extended Management’s yearly team building activity, 35 people from across the globe assembled eight wheelchairs with the goal to donate them to persons in need.

“Participating in a community service activity…provides an informal way for our team members to build bonds and get to know each other better in a meaningful context,” explains Sharon Hume, Adobe’s spokesperson.

Sourcewise received the donation for distribution to its Care Management clients. Sourcewise Care Management serves older adults by helping clients remain safely at home or adjust to their home, following a stay in the hospital, skilled nursing facility, or intermediate care facility.

The need for a wheelchair is common. Wheelchairs are a “covered item by Medicare when needed for indoor mobility but not covered when only needed for outdoor activities such as: going on medical appointments; socialization, shopping etc.,” explains Elisa Alarcon, Director of Sourcewise Care Management. The wheelchairs are a source of comfort, support towards movement, and independence for low-income clients of Sourcewise.

“With great gratitude, our family would like to thank you for the wheelchair. My father [had] slowly stopped going out to family trips or activities due to his unstableness in walking…,” expressed the family of a wheelchair recipient.

Over 140,000 individuals have some type of disability in Santa Clara County, according to the 2016–2020 Sourcewise Area Plan on Aging. Fifty percent of Santa Clara County residents with one or more disability are aged 65 years or older.

Corporate and consumer donations are an important component in serving this valued community. In FY 16-17, Sourcewise assisted 105,356 individuals living in Santa Clara County.

To make a financial contribution to Sourcewise, visit http://www.mysourcewise.com/commitment.

Learn more about the services offered by Sourcewise in support of the Santa Clara County community at www.mysourcewise.com, or call (408) 350-3200, option 1.

Motivation is the Driving Force to Remaining Physically Active for Older Adults

Is your new year’s resolution to be a healthier version of yourself?

A common goal is to become more physically active and maintain that exercise habit throughout the year.

For older adults, exercise assists with maintaining independence, healthy bones and joints, and reducing risk of chronic diseases.

Fortunately, 28–34 percent of adults ages 65–74 and 35–44 percent of adults 75 and older are already physically active, based on a 2017 Behavioral Risk Factor survey conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

However, a 2015 New Year’s Resolution study by the Statistic Brain Research Institute concluded the lowest success rates are in the 50+ age group with only 8 percent confirming they maintained their resolutions through the entire year.

Staying motivated depends on your personality and preference. You control your schedule; choose activities that fit your needs.

Being physically active is more about moving and less about how intense the movement is. “Some physical activity is better than none. Adults who sit less and do any amount of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity gain some health benefits,” states the U.S Department of Health and Human Services in a 2018 study on Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans.

Get motivated and get moving:

  • Create realistic goals.
  • Focus daily on the benefits of exercising.
  • Find activities you enjoy.
  • Track your progress.
  • Post your goal in visible areas.

Always seek advice from your doctor when you begin to engage in new physical activities or diets.

Take this time to reflect on your past experiences from the previous year and create new goals for this year.

Additional resources are available to assist with your goal of health and wellness. Contact a Community Resource Specialist of Sourcewise: (408) 350-3200, option 1.

Prepare for the 2018 Tax Season

In 2018, many taxpayers’ withholding decreased where taxpayers experienced an increase in paychecks; however, this may cause an unexpected tax bill or a smaller refund in 2019. When preparing to file your taxes, get to know your options to ensure you are not surprised when tax season arrives.

Prepare for tax season:

  • Review your withholding.
  • Review the tax law.
  • Review your Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN).
  • Find the forms you need to file.
  • Look for resources available to you.
  • Perform a Paycheck Checkup to determine if adjusting your withholding could eliminate extra taxes you may owe this season:https://www.irs.gov/paycheck-checkup
  • Submit a new Form W-4, Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate: https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/fw4p.pdf
  • Make additional estimated tax payments if your current income withholding does not cover the 2018 tax you owe by using the Form 1040-ES, Estimated Tax for Individuals worksheet to determine your estimated payments:https://www.irs.gov/forms-pubs/about-form-1040-es

When prepping for your refund and to determine if you will receive a smaller refund due to the new laws:

  • Evaluate your expected refund amount.
  • Review the Publication 5307, Tax Reform Basics for Individuals and Families for more information:https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p5307.pdf
  • Renew your ITIN and ensure it has not expired.

The 2018 Form 1040 has been redesigned and replaces the 1040A and 1040EZ forms. If you file electronically, you will be required to have your 2017 Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) to sign your return: https://www.irs.gov/e-file-providers/definition-of-adjusted-gross-income. If you use the same software you have used in previous years, you do not need to enter your 2017 AGI.

Learn more about taxpayer resources. Contact a Sourcewise Community Resource Specialist: (408) 350-3200, option 1.

Pai Venegas Receives Top Host Trainer Recognition

In September 2018, Pai Venegas, Director of Programs of Silicon Valley Independent Living Center (SVILC) was granted “Supervisor award” for her work with participants of Sourcewise Senior Employment Services in Fiscal Year 2017/2018.

For the last eight years, SVILC has been a longstanding partner as a host contributing to the success of the program. A valued partner and resource for Sourcewise Senior Employment Services, Pai shows her merit through her dedication and work ethic.“She [Pai] has shown a lot of patience and goes above and beyond to help guide her participants with effective on-the-job training,” states Henri Villalovoz, Director of Senior Employment Services.

Under Pai’s direction at SVILC, the hosting agency provides supervised on-the-job training to an assigned participant of Sourcewise Senior Employment Services. This relationship provides the participant an opportunity to learn and update professional skills, gain self-confidence, impress their supervisor with their job performance and at times may be offered a permanent, direct employment position within their host training agency.

Pai has consistently contributed to Sourcewise Senior Employment Services at both SVILC locations in Gilroy and San Jose. In Fiscal Year 2017/2018, Pai has supervised three participants, including one in their Gilroy office.

“SCSEP [Sourcewise Senior Employment Services] has provided us the opportunity to assist our host participants to increase their quality of life, rise above obstacles by providing opportunities to enhance existing skills, train for a new career and find a rewarding job,” Pai said.

Sourcewise provides training environments through important partnerships with 12 other local organizations, including, but not limited to: Second Harvest Food Bank; Heart of the Valley Services for Seniors; and Catholic Charities John XXIII Multiservice Center.

To learn more about the Sourcewise Senior Employment Services, call: (408) 350-3200, option 5.

Local Conference Focuses on Caregiver Needs

Increasing access to information for caregivers is key to their ability to assist older adults.

While 54 percent of all caregivers have regular access to internet, 37 percent of Hispanic/Latino seniors do not know or have not looked for information on senior services, according to a caregiver focus group and a random digital dial survey conducted in 2015 by Sourcewise.

In April 2019, the 6th Annual Alzheimer’s Latino Conference—generously sponsored by local organizations, government, and councilmembers—provides resources and education in Spanish, in San Jose, CA.

“What we have learned to date is that Hispanics/Latinos face a higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease so it’s crucial to raise awareness by providing educational presentations,” said Liliana Kaszuba, Community Relations Manager for the Alzheimer’s Association and a key event organizer for the conference.

Accessing available community resources allows caregivers to focus on caring for their loved one and their own health.

In Santa Clara County, 71 percent of Hispanic/Latino seniors fell below the Elder Index, compared to 41 percent of Caucasians 65+, according to the Sourcewise 2016-2020 Area Plan on Aging. Add to that a difficulty to meet basic needs such as transportation, medical care, and housing for 45 percent of Latino seniors and the need for caregivers to provide assistance is even more crucial.

For a third year, Sourcewise contributes planning and staffing support to the valuable Alzheimer’s Latino Conference.

Previous attendees of the Latino Conference consistently express appreciation for the amount and quality of information received. An anonymous attendee stated, “I loved it, it was very informative. We appreciate all the support.”

Register for the 2019 conference at San Jose Latino Conference 2019 or by calling Sandra Green at (408) 372-9919. On March 01, 2019, access the conference website.

For information on local resources, connect to a Sourcewise Community Resource Specialist: (408) 350-3200, option 1 or community@mysourcewise.com.

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