Wednesday, January 7, 2015

How Can We Help Senior Living Alone in Florida?

Jan. 8, 2015

Dear Cathy:

I live in Florida where there are many senior citizens located and I am concerned about an elderly neighbor lady who lives alone.  She rarely has guests and never had any children of her own so she really doesn’t have anyone to check on her.  She still drives but can barely walk.  My husband and I have watched her health deteriorate over the years and wish we could do something to help her.  What can we do?  Concerned Neighbor, Florida

Dear Concerned Neighbor:

Due to a culture that celebrates youth and ignores the elderly, seniors and their families are largely unprepared to deal with the challenges seniors face as they age. Many seniors have to eat cat food because they are living on very few funds.  Some don’t receive any type of retirements and might only have social security payments to live on.

Social services has a department called the Department for the Aged and Disabled which might be different in many cities but basically they do the same thing.  This is a state office and they have social workers that comes out and makes sure seniors are doing okay.  So if you have an issue with the care of this neighbor, you should reach out to this office.

Many legislators and the police also know about these offices and they might know about other services since the state of Florida is filled with seniors so reach out to them also.  You can also solicit the help of organizations, community groups, and churches in your neighborhood that can go by this seniors' home to make sure she knows there are others that care about her. 

Seniors want to remain independent in their homes for as long as they can.  As a person ages, many times they lose family and friends so they can easily end up being all alone.  You can get involved by helping her pick up prescriptions, foods and other supplies.  I am sure she would appreciate it.  For more info on how to take care of seniors and yourself as you age read the book "Golden Years: How To Age Gracefully and Take Care of Seniors."  

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