Media Archive

Learn the Signs of Elder Abuse

One in six seniors aged 60 and older has experienced some form of elder abuse within the past year, as of January 2018. The global increase in older people requires family, friends, and neighbors to become more alert of potentially abusive situations.

Whether you are an older adult; care for someone who is; or simply know an older person; you can play a part in preventing elder abuse. World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) on June 15 is an annual call to action for individuals, organizations, and communities concerned with senior rights which urges individuals to volunteer for organizations benefitting seniors.

The National Center on Elder Abuse states, “The purpose of WEAAD is to provide an opportunity for communities around the world to promote a better understanding of abuse and neglect of older persons by raising awareness of the cultural, social, economic, and demographic processes affecting elder abuse and neglect.”

Signs of elder abuse can be difficult to recognize and are crucial in getting help for victims. Take note of the following warning signs of possible abuse. These factors may exist alone or in combination; may escalate in frequency or severity; and may change from one form to another:

  • Unexplained signs of injury (bruises, welt, scars), especially if they appear symmetrically on two sides of the body
  • Abnormal explanations of broken bones, sprains, or dislocations
  • Unusual weight loss, malnutrition, and dehydration
  • Unsanitary living conditions: dirt, bugs, soiled bedding and clothes
  • Significant withdrawals from the elder’s accounts
  • Suspicious changes in wills, power of attorney, titles, and policies

Call 911 when any individual is facing an immediate or life-threatening danger.

Report adult abuse or neglect. Contact Adult Protective Services: (408) 975-4900.

Plan Now for a Secure Future

Many people expect to stay in their homes as they get older but have not made plans to accomplish this goal. To ensure a secure retirement, consider long-term care insurance; home modifications; and financial strategies to age comfortably at home.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, most Americans underestimate the risk of developing a disability and needing long-term services and supports (LTSS). An estimated 52% of Americans turning 65 today will develop a disability serious enough to require LTSS. Although most will need assistance for less than two years, about one in seven adults will have a disability for more than five years.

A recent study by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reports that 8% of Americans have long-term care insurance. Insurance of this type helps with expenses related to activities of daily living and personal care. Most Americans pay for these services out of pocket, since Medicare only pays for skilled or rehabilitative services.

Because mobility decreases with age, accessibility modifications may gradually be needed. Safety enhancements accommodate changing physical needs and can include anything from grab bars and nonslip rugs to more costly options such as installing a chair lift or a walk-in tub.

Financial strategies are necessary to prioritize expenses arising with increasing needs. Home modifications; increased healthcare expenses; and in-home caregivers can be expensive. Investigate options such as an annuity (a contract with an insurance company to allocate money that is later distributed back to the person over time) or a reverse mortgage to assist with future expenses.

Contact a Community Resource Specialist to find help with long-term care insurance questions; home modifications; and financial strategies: (408) 350-3200, option 1.

Strengthen Your Heart with a Daily Walk

Regular physical activity can improve the quality of sleep, reduce symptoms of depression, and reduce cognitive decline among older adults.

“Besides the anti-aging benefits of exercise, doing regular activity [walking] helps with reducing arthritic pain, and improves lung and brain function. Staying fit and flexible also makes it easier to prevent falls and improve overall quality of life,” said Chuck Newcomb, Registered Dietician for Sourcewise.

A 1996 study by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention found a 58% reduction in falls of older women who began a home-based exercise program in a controlled trial.

Walking is an aerobic exercise with many benefits: it’s free; can be done almost anywhere (local malls, neighborhoods, parks); and allows you to move at your own pace. While physical activity may seem like a daunting task to some as we age, walking is a manageable option for many older adults.

Walking improves circulation which helps to prevent or manage chronic conditions like heart disease and high blood pressure. According to the Arthritis Foundation, walking will strengthen your heart.

Regular walks can become a social outlet when including family and friends. The American Heart Association stated, “Finding a companion(s) to exercise with will add to your enjoyment, create accountability, and encourage you to make the activity a part of a routine schedule.” Get outdoors in May with the Open Space Authority’s  series of outdoor hikes specifically designed for older adults. Visit http://openspaceauthority.org/visitors/events for more details to sign-up including dates and times of each event. 

If exercising regularly is difficult, start exercising for short periods of time at low intensity by walking every other day. Once your body has adapted to the physical activity, if you are comfortable, gradually increase the time and distance.  

Speak with your primary care physician before starting any exercise program.  

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

Mercury readers raise $20K to support Sourcewise Transit Service

San Jose, March 22, 2018: Sourcewise, a nonprofit organization that supports adults and caregivers in Santa Clara County, received a $20,000 gift from Mercury News 2017 Wish Book readers. The gift will be used to support the Sourcewise Transit Service, a transportation option that assists seniors in South County.

Developed by Sourcewise in response to identified transportation needs of the South County senior community, the senior transit service provides door-to-door rides to seniors who have difficulty with ambulation, are isolated, or do not have other transportation options available.

“I am grateful for the support of the Santa Clara County community, and for Mercury News 2017 Wish book whose yearly donation drive make our community a better place to live through its support of local non-profits,” shared Steve Schmoll, Chief Executive Officer of Sourcewise.

The funds could not have come at a better time, according to Rosie Jimenez, Director of South County. Rosie said, “Since our pilot began in April, the demand for Sourcewise Transit Service passengers has quadrupled.”

The service has made a real impact for seniors living in South County, connecting them with services as well as enhancing individual independence that comes from being mobile. Since the service began in April, the Sourcewise Transit Service has provided 4,564 one-way rides.

The Mercury 2017 Wish Book account is open year round. Contributions to support the Sourcewise Transit Service can be made at http://wishbook.mercurynews.com/2017/source or sent at any time to: San Jose Mercury News Wish Book Fund, 4 N. 2nd Street, Suite 800, San Jose, CA 95113.

Sourcewise is a 501(c)(3) independent nonprofit serving all adults, their families, and their caregivers in Santa Clara County since 1973.

If you are interested in learning more about Sourcewise programs and services, visit www.mysourcewise.com or call (408) 762-7362.

Contact Info:
Aneliza Del Pinal
Director, Public Relations
(408) 557-4701
adelpinal@mysourcewise.com

We welcome the re-use, republication, and distribution of Sourcewise content. Please credit us with the following information: Used with the permission of http://www.mysourcewise.com.

Mercury readers raise $20K to support Sourcewise Transit Service

San Jose, March 22, 2018: Sourcewise, a nonprofit organization that supports adults and caregivers in Santa Clara County, received a $20,000 gift from Mercury News 2017 Wish Book readers. The gift will be used to support the Sourcewise Transit Service, a transportation option that assists seniors in South County.

Developed by Sourcewise in response to identified transportation needs of the South County senior community, the senior transit service provides door-to-door rides to seniors who have difficulty with ambulation, are isolated, or do not have other transportation options available. 

“I am grateful for the support of the Santa Clara County community, and for Mercury News 2017 Wish book whose yearly donation drive make our community a better place to live through its support of local non-profits,” shared Steve Schmoll, Chief Executive Officer of Sourcewise.

The funds could not have come at a better time, according to Rosie Jimenez, Director of South County. Rosie said, “Since our pilot began in April, the demand for Sourcewise Transit Service passengers has quadrupled.”

The service has made a real impact for seniors living in South County, connecting them with services as well as enhancing individual independence that comes from being mobile. Since the service began in April, the Sourcewise Transit Service has provided 4,564 one-way rides.

The Mercury 2017 Wish Book account is open year round, Contributions to support the Sourcewise Transit Service can be made at http://wishbook.mercurynews.com/2017/source or sent at any time to: San Jose Mercury News Wish Book Fund, 4 N. 2nd Street, Suite 800, San Jose, CA 95113.

Sourcewise is a 501(c)(3) independent nonprofit serving all adults, their families, and their caregivers in Santa Clara County since 1973.

If you are interested in learning more about Sourcewise programs and services, visit www.mysourcewise.com or call (408) 762-7362.

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Contact Info:
Aneliza Del Pinal
Director, Public Relations
(408) 557-4701
adelpinal@mysourcewise.com

We welcome the re-use, republication, and distribution of Sourcewise content. Please credit us with the following information: Used with the permission of http://www.mysourcewise.com.

Sourcewise Announces Request for Proposals for Services Aimed to Support Caregivers in Santa Clara County

San Jose, March 3, 2018: Sourcewise announced today requests for Older American Act dollars, Title III E, Family Caregiver Support Program. The Family Caregiver Support Program is designed to establish networks that provide supportive services for family caregivers, grandparents, and older individuals who are relative caregivers. Sourcewise will be accepting proposals for the following services, which must be provided in Santa Clara County:

  • Communication Education on Caregiving
  • Caregiver Training
  • Grandparent Case Management
  • Respite Out-of-Home
  • Respite In-Home

Sourcewise plans to award six contracts totaling $347,750 dollars to support low income caregivers who provide unpaid care for loved ones 60 years and older.

“Every day, there are an estimated 40 million unpaid Americans who are supporting their families, friends, and loved ones so that they can live independently. We know that Santa Clara County caregivers need our support, and we want to ensure programs are available for the most vulnerable,” said Stephen Schmoll, Chief Executive Officer of Sourcewise.

The service delivery process for this program happens every four years and is in line with Sourcewise Area Plan on Aging. The 2016-2020 Area Plan on Aging (mysourcewise.com/area-plan) provides a comprehensive needs assessment of seniors, those with disabilities, and their caregivers in Santa Clara County.  

“We look forward to working with our partners to continue to provide services that enhance the quality of life for seniors in Santa Clara County,” shared Manuel Altamirano, Chief Operating Officer of Sourcewise.

Sourcewise is an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization primarily funded by federal support though the Older Americans Act. The organization’s mission is to provide adults and their caregivers the tools and services they need to effectively navigate their health and life options. Through a comprehensive network of resources, Sourcewise strives to educate, prepare, support, and advocate for all adults, their families, and their caregivers within Santa Clara County. Direct programs and services include: Information & Awareness, Health Insurance Counseling & Advocacy, Meals on Wheels, Senior Employment Services, Care Management, Family Caregiver Support Program, and Public Authority Services.

If you are interested in learning more about services offered by Sourcewise, visit www.mysourcewise.com, or call (408) 350-3200, option 1. To support Sourcewise, through your tax deductible donation, please visit www.mysourcewise.com/commitment.

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Contact Info:
Aneliza Del Pinal
Director, Public Relations
(408) 557-4701
adelpinal@mysourcewise.com

We welcome the re-use, republication, and distribution of Sourcewise content. Please credit us with the following information: Used with the permission of http://www.mysourcewise.com.

Caregivers Find Their Personal Support Networks

Fifty percent of caregivers indicate their loved ones needed 13–24 hours of daily assistance. Twenty-one percent of caregivers state their biggest challenge is a lack of adequate time to care for themselves or other family members, according to a recent study conducted by the National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP.

On average, caregivers spend approximately four years providing care, with nearly one-quarter acting in this capacity for five years or longer.

More astounding data collected by the Administration on Community Living for caregivers served by the National Family Caregiver Support Program in 2016 shows that about 30% of caregivers have provided care for 5–10 years; with 12% in this role for 11–20 years.

Atlas of Caregiving, a nonprofit organization dedicated to family caregivers, has developed a tool to facilitate managing critical challenges caregivers address.

The Atlas CareMap provides an understanding of the “ecosystem of family caregiving; the relationships that surround caregivers; and factors which shape their experiences,” states founder of the project, Rajiv Mehta. The end goal is to map resources and support networks.

This relationship map illustrates the caregiver’s support system; highlighting what is working well. Completed maps offer valuable insights into the duties of a family caregiver, facilitating important discussions around sharing responsibilities and workload.

Alice Jordan, 69, is the primary caregiver for her partner, Vickie, 64, who has multiple sclerosis. Alice and Vickie’s brother were the only ones caring for Vickie. After drawing a CareMap, Vickie says, “It made me realize I had more support than I thought.” And for that, she added, she’s very grateful.

Create your own relationship map by visiting www.atlasofcaregiving.com.

This article includes excerpts from a story published by California Healthline, an editorially independent service of the California Health Care Foundation.

Sourcewise Community Resource Specialists provide support to caregivers by linking you to available resources. Call for more information: (408) 350-3200, option 1.

Virginia Montana, 65, Re-enters the Workforce

Unemployed for 10 years, Virginia was determined to rejoin the workforce and visited Work2Future in hopes of finding new job opportunities. While researching her options, she learned about Sourcewise Senior Employment Services. She visited Sourcewise and quickly began the enrollment process.

Virginia is now a Staff Assistant and Hospitality Coordinator for Heart of the Valley Services for Seniors, Inc., a host organization of Sourcewise Senior Employment Services in Santa Clara County.

Among other responsibilities, Virginia completes electronic intake forms for incoming volunteer requests, a task which has strengthened her computer skills.

Virginia’s position offers varied experiences. She explains, “I wear many hats at Heart of the Valley. Every day is different, and I have learned new skills to add to my resume.”

Glenda Cresap, Executive Director of Heart of the Valley Services for Seniors, Inc. said, "It is such a pleasure working with Virginia. Her positive spirit is such a joy for the clients she speaks with. She has genuine compassion for older adults and the challenges they face. She is such a benefit to our staff and to the mission of our agency. Virginia is eager to learn new things, which in turn assists with the workload…" Learn more about the programs and services Heart of the Valley by visiting https://servicesforseniors.org/.

Virginia feels fortunate. “I think that anyone who enters into the Senior Employment [Services] is going to be in a position to give back.” Virginia feels livelier now that she is back in the workforce and is grateful for the support that both Sourcewise and Heart of the Valley have shown her.

Learn more about Senior Employment Services: (408) 350-3200, option 5.

Make Smart Lifestyle Choices for Good Health

Your risk for heart disease may be genetically linked. Still, you can proactively make choices to increase your chances for good health and longevity.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently shared Preventing Heart Disease: Healthy Living Habits, indicating that your lifestyle plays a large part in maintaining normal levels for blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar.

Smart lifestyle choices can lower your risk for heart disease and heart attack. To maintain heart health, incorporate beneficial habits including: eating a healthy diet; exercising regularly; not smoking; and limiting alcohol consumption.

Opt for a diet high in fresh fruits, vegetables, and low-fat proteins; while avoiding processed foods to maintain a healthy heart and body weight. Smart diet choices provide the nutrients and energy necessary for your body to function optimally.

Regular exercise is a great stress reducer, helping with weight control, muscle strength, and bone density. Even gentle exercise like yoga is good for your heart. Build a regular routine to reap the benefits of exercise.

Alcohol consumption leads to higher blood pressure. While abstinence is best for health, the CDC recommends a daily intake of no more than two drinks for men, and one drink for women. Alcohol is high in empty calories which provide no nutritional benefits.

What is the most important single act you can accomplish to promote a healthy heart? Quit smoking. Cigarette smoking increases your risk of heart disease. Kick your nicotine habit by gradually reducing your cravings.

Your doctor can help you review the options, including: nicotine gum, patches, and even hypnosis. Learn more: https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/.

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.

Sourcewise Transit Service Keeps South County Seniors Connected

Older adults who live alone or in rural parts of Santa Clara County face isolation and its detrimental health effects. For those struggling with transportation options, the Sourcewise Transit Service provides free, door-to-door rides for seniors who have difficulty with ambulation, are isolated, and who do not have other available transportation options.

“It’s made a difference in my life. It’s perfect and helpful to me,” shares Mary Elmsry, a Sourcewise Transit Service rider.

The Service enhances transportation access for 11,574 South County residents aged 65+ in need of connections to Senior Centers in Morgan Hill and Gilroy. Sourcewise currently provides transportation for 50 seniors.

“When seniors give up driving, it impacts their mobility and affects their social connectedness,” says Rosie Jimenez, Director of Sourcewise South County.

Since its April launch, the Sourcewise Transit Service has provided 3,560 rides as of Dec. 31, 2017.

Sourcewise is partnering with the Mercury Wishbook who highlights the needs of our community and encourages philanthropy to meet those needs.

Some 90 percent of Silicon Valley’s philanthropic dollars exit the Bay Area, according to “The Giving Code”—a report about Silicon Valley philanthropy released by the Packard Foundation in 2016. Packard Foundation CEO Carol Larson says David Packard‘s and John A. Sobrato’s philosophies were: “If you live here, you give here. If you work here, you give here,” reports Sal Pizarro in The Mercury News on Dec. 4, 2017.

Help Sourcewise raise $20,000 to offset costs of maintaining the vehicles: oil changes, fuel, and major wear replacement.

Support the Sourcewise Transit Service with a contribution of any size by visiting http://wishbook.mercurynews.com/2017/source. Or mail a check to: The Mercury News Wish Book Fund, 4 N. 2nd Street, Suite 800, San Jose, CA 95113.

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