Joann Erenhouse: Senior Solutions | How to 'boost your budget' this summer

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Summer is around the corner. Senior Solutions continues to work for our older Vermonters and those who are disabled. We have been extremely flexible in the ways we have served our clients and have enjoyed finding new resources and programs to assist with nutrition, healthcare, mobility, financial well-being, socialization, and good mental health. We have our Visitor Programs that have expanded to provide telephone connection calls and to support our clients with shopping pick up and delivery errands. We are investigating how to connect individuals who are isolated with devices so they can remain in contact with their case managers and visitor program friends. We have some new ideas to help caregivers work with their loved ones with dementia. Our remaining Medicare Boot Camp sessions are July 15 and August 27. Call our HelpLine at 802-885-2669 now to register and find out details. These sessions are designed to help you select the appropriate plan for your needs. There is no charge for the class which is totally neutral. We just want you to know how to figure out what is best for you.

Thinking about summer: if you have not already signed up for 3SquaresVT you should call the HelpLine at 802-885-2669 and see if you are eligible. Anyone on the 3Squares Program can participate in the Crop Cash benefit. You take your 3Squares card to the farmers market and the administration booth will take $10 out of your account and give you $20 worth of tokens to spend that day at the farmers market. This doubles your money for fresh fruits and vegetables! You can go every week and you can visit any of the following markets:

In Windham County: Brattleboro Farmers Market, Greater Falls Farmers Market in Bellows Falls, Putney Farmers Market, and the Townshend Farmers Market.

In Windsor County: Hartland Farmers Market, Ludlow Farmers Market, Market on the Green (Woodstock), and the Norwich Farmers Market.

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Next to growing your own produce, this is the best deal around. It will definitely "Boost Your Budget"!

Senior Solutions is working hard to find ways to save you money. Part of our "Boost Your Budget" campaign is to help older Vermonters identify benefits that can make them healthier and more comfortable. Our National Council On Aging (NCOA) benefits program can provide information, application assistance, and extra help paying for prescriptions, identifying insurance options, and accessing Choice for Care through long term Medicaid. In addition we can connect you to your community through our Volunteer Visitor Services. We can help you enroll in 3SquaresVT and Meals on Wheels for your nutritional needs. If you have been taking numerous medications - why not check with us for a free Home Meds analysis screening. This will identify any harmful interactions taking place by mixing your current meds with over the counter products, herbal remedies, vitamins, and perhaps some old, outdated prescriptions. This is done by calling the HelpLine and requesting our nurse/case manager to contact you at your convenience. The service is free to anyone in Windham and Windsor Counties who is 60 years or older. You do not become a client — we just provide the service. It can be a life saving analysis!

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Only two months left to self-report to the Census 2020. Please take just a few minutes and reply to the dozen questions. It makes a huge difference in the allocation of federal funds. Vermont needs all we can get to support and sustain the helpful programs so necessary, especially now for our communities.

You can respond by mail if you received a form. The envelope should say Jeffersonville, IN or Phoenix, AZ. You can mail it back to: U.S. Census Bureau, National Processing Center, 100 Logistics Ave., Jeffersonville, IN 47144. By phone: You call 844-330-2020. Online visit www.2020Census.gov. Do not give out any information to someone who calls you. We need all responses to be counted!

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Thanks to all the hard work so many agencies, organizations, senior centers, police and fire departments, legislators, hospital staff, friends, volunteers, and neighbors have been doing to help and keep us all safe. As a state, we are in pretty good shape compared to others. That is because we care about each other.

As a final note today, our case managers in White River Junction, Springfield, and in Brattleboro are here to support you through these hard times; please reach out to us at 802-885-2669. We at Senior Solutions want to advocate and work for the aging population just like all of you worked to teach and protect us. This is not a hand-out. It is called giving back.

Check our website at www.seniorsolutionsvt.org for more information. Also, Google "BCTV senior solutions program" on YouTube for our monthly show.

Joann Erenhouse, Esq., is the community relations director for Senior Solutions, the federally-designated Area Agency on Aging serving Southeastern Vermont since 1973. Senior Solutions provides information and assistance and administers a variety of programs for older adults and people with disabilities. Call 802-885-2669 or visit www.SeniorSolutionsVT.org.


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