Community centers for senior citizens all over the region and throughout the point out are additional than just a position to assemble for a meal and some camaraderie. They’re a local community in a neighborhood, concentric circles that share a typical center — that center remaining a susceptible population with exclusive demands and criteria.
The perception of community and the actual group itself have been harmed by a pandemic that has forced partial or full shutdowns of Region Agency on Ageing-affiliated Senior Community Facilities. It is for the basic safety of the users, but the influence has harm revenues and associations.
Rebuilding will be vital following the punch of COVID-19 has been softened by the wide vaccination initiative that is underway. Toward that finish and with the long term in intellect, the Pennsylvania Office of Ageing has awarded $2 million in grants to be similarly divided between 405 AAA-affiliated community facilities for seniors. The allocation is for the fiscal 12 months ending June 30, 2021.
The state shifted from its normal exercise in the distribution of grants. That typical observe associated a competitive grant software approach. Instead, every single of the state’s 52 space agencies on growing old will receive more than enough money to give each and every of its qualified senior facilities $5,000. Proceeds come from the Pennsylvania Lottery.
The state is letting each and every senior heart the versatility to commit its funding via June 30, 2022 — an added 12 months.
The funding can be employed for numerous initiatives, from renovations to outreach to hire payments to courses.
It was smart to deviate in these unconventional moments from the common grant-building approach. The condition is recognizing that time and hard work to make individuals grant programs is probable in shorter source throughout a fatal pandemic. In addition, every senior center in the state has been impacted in some way and could use a economic boost.
It’s now incumbent on the area organizations on ageing to assist their member senior centers expend the revenue wisely. While an equal grant of $5,000 is equitable, the dollars and the excellent it could do could go further if partnerships are created in its spending.
Area leaders of and advocates for the region’s senior facilities really should have the last say in how to shell out their grants. But AAA directors need to motivate imaginative imagining and collaboration.
— Pittsburgh Post-Gazette