Elderly, senior citizens, and older adults in Missouri can receive assistance from Area Agency on Aging centers. There are a number of offices across the state that coordinate services and assistance programs for seniors across Missouri. Food, meals, job training programs, referrals, and information are just a few of the services available.
Transportation is coordinated by area agency on aging offices. The rides are coordinated and arranged with local outside agencies to transport the elderly and senior citizens for essential trips, including doctor appointments, critical errands, or even trips to a local senior center. Any transportation will need to be scheduled in advance, and this is not available in all Missouri towns and cities.
What will usually happen is that the “riders” will be picked up at their home or apartment and taken to their destination. If needed, they will be provided assistance getting on or off the van or bus. Then, later in the day, at a pre-determined time, the van or bus will pick up the senior or the rider and bring them back to their house or apartment.
Agency on Aging offices are a great place for information on public aid, government resources, and local non-profits. It can be provided in person, or over the phone. Information, referrals, and other details on assistance services is provided by case managers and volunteers. All of this is offered at no cost to anyone who needs advice. In addition to nursing homes, families now can choose how to get help and referrals on a range of resources.
The free information provided will help seniors learn about the wide variety of resources available to them, their caregivers, and older adults. The offices have access to databases and guides on services that are offered across Missouri and at the federal level.
You will get more than information. Also receive details on eligibility requirements, printed materials and pamphlets to help you make well-informed, sound decisions and receive free tips and advice on selecting a quality provider. If your local Area Agency on Aging office doesn’t offer the service or assistance program that you need, then they will refer you to someone in Missouri, or a federal government program, that can help you.
Senior centers are located across Missouri, and are in most towns and cities. They may be arguably the most visible program offered through the Missouri Area Agency on Aging. The centers often times become a focus for offering information, community involvement and provide the elderly with numerous services. Programs can provide health education and screening programs, exercise classes, information on senior focused resources such as prescription drug assistance, and all people the ability to participate in a variety of recreational and social activities.
Many of the local senior centers also have what is known as a Low Vision Resource Center for visually impaired persons who need assistance in doing handwork or reading. The Missouri Rehabilitation Services for the Blind provides low-vision aids. These are available for use at the centers free of charge.
As indicated, the senior centers are located in most towns and cities. They serve as focal points for older citizens in the community. Each of these centers are multi-purpose, and they also provide assistance such as hot, nutritious congregate meals, workshops on benefit programs, and some centers have on site volunteers that can also deliver meals to eligible homebound seniors.
Some of the other assistance offered by senior centers can include, but is not limited to, health, educational, and recreational programs. They are a great place to call or stop by at for information and assistance services, volunteer opportunities, and telephone reassurance. Most of the centers offer their services for free, however contributions and donations are always appreciated.
Staying fit and healthy is often a key need for senior citizens and the elderly. Many can’t shop for themselves, or prepare their own meals. So older persons who are physically unable to attend their local grocery store or senior center can sign up for Home-Delivered Meals. For many homebound seniors, disabled, or older adults the meals on wheel home-delivery program is vital to their continued independence and nutrition.
Usually a local senior center, church, or agency on aging office serves as the base of operations. Free or low cost meals can be delivered to frail older persons. Each home delivered meal meets at minimum one-third of the daily nutrition requirements of the senior. All meals will be packed into disposable as well as re-heatable containers. Sometimes the food may be prepared as a hot meal, and if the distance is too great, it may be frozen. The food items might be delivered by paid staff, volunteers, or they can be picked up at the Senior Center by family or caring friends.
A similar service is known as Meals on Wheels. This program was created in order to alleviate both the loneliness and the food insecurity that is experienced by at-risk seniors trying to cope with a hardship or other problems. The Meals on Wheels Programs delivers to your door nutritionally balanced meals to eligible homebound people age 60 and older.
Respite Care is a resource that provides short-term, temporary relief for caregivers of sick, frail, and otherwise homebound adults or individuals. What this program does is it offers help and support for caregivers who are responsible for taking care of an elderly person 24 hours a day. Everyone needs a break from time to time, and this Missouri Area on Aging Respite Care program can offer people a short term break from the stress associated with intensive care giving. Your local office will work with outside agencies that provide highly trained staff to watch over the homebound individual. This will allow the caregiver time to perform activities such as go to a doctor appointment, runs errands, or shop. The respite care workers provide only companionship and supervision to the senior, and they do not provide services such as assistance with personal care, administer medications, and they don’t lift or move the elderly adult.
Missouri seniors can receive free or low cost legal representation and assistance regarding such issues as consumer fraud, elder abuse, housing disputes, government retirement benefits, and guardianships. One of the services in high demand is legal advice and support in dealing with government benefits such as SSI, Social Security, Medicare, and billing issues. Your area agency on aging office partners with pro-bono attorneys or legal aid agencies to provide advice.
Missouri Senior Employment Training Program is paid for by the federal government under the Title V program. This program seeks to help low income older workers (anyone over the age of 55) either acquire or upgrade their current skills and return to the work force. Agency on aging offices help link older workers with businesses in the community that are willing to hire and train them. Most positions are part time, and can hopefully lead to full time opportunities. Residents must be 55 years of age or older, be actively looking for a job, and they need to meet certain low income guidelines to be eligible for this job training program.
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