Minnesota Agency on Aging.
Minnesota Agency on Aging centers and offices focus on meeting the needs of senior citizens and the elderly across the state. While a focus is on addressing medical needs, bills, prescription medications, and food, they are a great resource to contact for any type of assistance. The programs they offer across Minnesota are extensive and wide ranging.
Job opportunities are offered from the Senior Community Service Employment. Adults age 55 or older and who meet income guidelines can be placed into part time employment opportunities. It will provide people the means to acquire new skills, and hopefully land into a full time role.
Minnesota Workforce Centers are also available to seniors and the elderly. They provide employment and job training services in convenient and easily accessible locations. Examples of services may include resume preparation assistance, interview training and other pre-job guidance services; job matching and referral; unemployment insurance; information on financial aid for education and training; and referrals. Assistance may also include transportation and child care.
Health Insurance Counseling is offered by specialists who work with Minnesota Agency on Aging offices. They provide free information and advice to Medicare beneficiaries and their caregivers. Most of the services are provided by volunteers. Some of what can be offered includes information on understanding the basics of Medicare and Medical Assistance, assisting with completing health insurance forms. The services are free, and counselors from Aging on Aging offices also provide senior citizens help with selecting a Medicare Part D plan, and support in assessing long-term health care insurance. They will also help them locate alternatives to health insurance plans.
Elderly Waiver Program can pay for home based services for people age 65 and older. Applicants need to be eligible for Medical Assistance (MA) and require the level of health care provided in a nursing home, but choose to reside in the community. The Minnesota Department of Human Services runs the EW program in partnership with agency on aging centers. The Alternative Care Grant is similar, but it can help those who do not qualify for Medical Assistance.
Senior financial assistance programs in Minnesota also are available. These include Utility (Energy Assistance and/or EAP in Minnesota), Social Security Supplemental Income (SSI), Lifeline Telephone Assistance programs, MN Supplemental Assistance (MSA), rent or subsidized housing assistance, and food stamps.
Food assistance is offered by Agency on Aging centers and several other non-profit agencies. Meals are offered to seniors and persons with disabilities.
- Congregate Dining is available at many senior centers and subsidized housing sites. Hot noon-time meals are offered, along with companionship.
- Food shelves and pantries are located throughout most counties in Minnesota, and can provide supplemental and emergency food for people in need.
- Food stamps and the support program is an individual county-administered, federal government program that assists people and families with low incomes, including seniors. It will help people better meet their nutritional needs. You can apply for food stamps and vouchers at an Area on Aging center.
- Home delivered meals and grocery delivery is offered by some agencies and partner organizations. The service is offered for the home-bound, disabled, elderly and those who are unable to go grocery shopping for themselves. Non-profit and charities take orders from clients and set up times to deliver the groceries. Another option that is well known is Meals-on-Wheels. It provides free or low cost hot meals to home-bound people over 60 years of age.
The Agency on Aging offices in Minnesota are a great resource for prescription drug help. Learn about public programs, discount cards or prescriptions from Canada and other countries, free or low cost assistance through drug manufacturers, and more.
Rent and housing assistance is offered from Subsidized and Affordable Housing. This will allow seniors in Minnesota the ability to pay a maximum percentage of their income towards their rent. It will generally cap rent expenses at 30% of their total monthly income. Call a Housing Authority or Agency on Aging office for details on this and other low income housing and/or rental assistance programs.
Free senior legal aid and advocacy is offered for older residents, the elderly and senior citizens. A number of law firms, public and private non-profit agencies, and other organizations assist seniors with addressing legal issues. Learn about what rights you have too. While some agencies and lawyers help clients plan ahead in effort to avoid future legal problems, other legal aid will help seniors resolve current legal problems. Some programs are free, but other private legal service fees in Minnesota vary by agency and by legal task or advice sought.
Common areas of law practiced by elder law attorneys include conservatorships and guardianships, Medical Assistance, will planning, Social Security and disability, long-term care, durable power of attorney, fraud, living trusts, and tax and estate planning.
Senior transportation services are offered in some towns and cities for both medical and other appointments. Rides are often provided in vans, buses or cars, and may be wheelchair accessible. While some rides may be free, fees may be charged in certain cases. However private insurance, Medical Assistance and long-term care waiver programs may also pay for transportation services. The elderly person often needs to be low income for the free ride though. More on senior transportation services.
Medical transportation is offered for dental and medical appointments, therapy treatments, dentists and other health care related appointments. It will always be for local centers in Minnesota, such as a nearby clinic or hospital.
Non-medical transportation can include trips to shopping, taking care of personal business, and rides for social events as well.
Senior and aging centers in Minnesota
Arrowhead Area Agency on Aging, 221 West 1st Street, Duluth, Minnesota 55802, Call 218-722-5545
This office helps people in Aitkin, Carlton, Cook, Itasca, Koochiching, Lake & St. Louis counties.
Central Minnesota Council on Aging, 1301 W St. Germain Street, SE, St. Cloud, Minnesota 56301-3456, telephone 320-253-9349
Counties supported are Benton, Cass, Chisago, Crow Wing, Isanti, Kanabec, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Pine, Sherburne, Stearns, Todd, Wadena, and Wright county Minnesota.
Land of the Dancing Sky Area Agency on Aging, 115 South Main Ave, Warren, Minnesota 56762, 218-745-6733
Counties covered - Becker, Beltrami, Clay, Clearwater, Douglas, Grant, Hubbard, Kittson, Lake of the Woods, Mahnomen, Marshall, Norman, Otter Tail, Pennington, Polk, Pope, Red Lake, Roseau, Stevens, Traverse & Wilkin.
Metropolitan Area Agency on Aging, 2365 N McKnight Road, Suite 3, North St. Paul, Minnesota 55109. Call this agency at 651-641-8612.
Seniors and elderly in the counties of Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, Scott, and Washington should call this center.
Minnesota Chippewa Tribe Area Agency on Aging, Cass Lake, Minnesota 56633, telephone 218-335-8586
Regions supported - Bois Forte, Grand Portage, Leech Lake, and White Earth.
Minnesota River Area Agency on Aging is located at 10 Civic Center Plaza, Suite 3, Mankato, MN 56002-3323. Dial 507-389-8879. They also have centers in Slayton and Willmar.
These centers cover Big Stone, Blue Earth, Brown, Chippewa, Cottonwood, Faribault, Jackson, Kandiyohi, Lac Qui Parle, Le Sueur, Lincoln, Lyon, Martin, McLeod, Meeker, Murray, Nicollet, Nobles, Pipestone, Redwood, Renville, Rock, Sibley, Swift, Waseca, Watonwan, and Yellow Medicine counties.
Southeastern Minnesota Area Agency on Aging. Address is 421 SW First Avenue, Room 201, Rochester, Minnesota 55902, 507-288-6944
Counties - Dodge, Fillmore, Freeborn, Goodhue, Houston, Mower, Olmsted, Rice, Steele, Wabasha, & Winona counties.