When senior citizens are able to stay in their homes, they’re better off, says Claudia Harrod, Cincinnati Area Senior Services
’ development manager.
“They can be more active, and they’re less depressed,” she says. “And it’s also more economical for seniors to be able to stay at home than be in a facility.”
In order for seniors to stay at home, they need to be able to maintain their independence while having various needs of daily living met. Since 1967, CASS has worked to meet some of those needs, and has helped seniors with everything from nutrition and transportation to financial assistance and guardianship.
“When you think about seniors, sometimes even opening a jar can be difficult,” Harrod says.
Each week, CASS delivers about 2,000 meals to homebound individuals in Hamilton County, which helps provide healthy options to those who are unable to cook or visit the grocery store regularly, if even at all.
“Nutrition is very important for everyone, but particularly for seniors, and these meals are balanced and meet one third of the daily recommended requirements for seniors,” Harrod says. “A lot of them have no way to get to the grocery store, and even if they could, they have to go up stairs and can’t carry the groceries, and some aren’t able to stand at the stove and cook, so this way, they always have one meal that’s easy for them to fix.”
A few years ago, CASS started its Savory Selects program, a food delivery program that provides enough meals for the week, plus bread and milk. Area seniors choose from 31 different catered entrees and side items, and instead of receiving a frozen meal once a day, they receive all of their meals at the beginning of each week.
“It’s nice for them because they can eat what they want that day and when they want it,” Harrod says. “Usually they would wait for the meal to arrive each day, and then it would have to be heated up, so it gives the seniors some dignity in being able to select what they eat.”
• Keep an eye out for CASS' new website, and look for ways you can get involved and help out.
• Call CASS at 513-721-4330 if you are a senior or know of a senior in need of assistance. Needs are not based on one's financial capabilities, so do not hesitate to seek help.
• Call CASS to make a donation.
By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at the University of Cincinnati. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia.