Page 17 - Senior Times South Central Michigan - June 2018 - 25-06
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Raised Gardening Beds Coming to Forks Senior Center
Caregiving Activities Close at Home
By: Mary Peterson, Program Coordinator, CareWell Services SW
By: Luann Summers, Executive Director, Forks Senior Center
The MI Choice Waiver Program
By: Paulette Porter, Marketing/Outreach Coordinator, CareWell Services SW
Senior Times - June 2018
Page 17
Thanks to a grant from Calhoun County Senior Millage to the Albion Community Gardens project, Forks Senior Center
will become one of the sites this summer where raised bed gardens will be available for older adults to plant, tend, and reap the benefits of having a garden. Additionally, through the assistance of the
First Baptist Church of Albion, and their “Love Our Community Week” Initiative, their member volunteers will assist in building and installing the beds in preparation for planting to begin.
Albion Community Gardens, Inc. (ACG) is a coalition of community groups and individuals who are working to help Albion have better access to fresh vegetables, fruits, and herbs in order to promote a healthier
Albion. ACG supports new
and experienced gardeners by providing free garden plots, some starter plants and seeds, a lending- tool library, and gardening advice to anyone willing to volunteer
20 hours a year to support the project. They are growing produce for community members who cannot garden or afford fresh produce for themselves and their families. ACG currently has three other sites in Albion with gardens they have adopted and worked
in previous years to grow and improve.
Gardening should not have to end as mobility and other issues impact older adults. Gardening provides exercise, stimulation, accomplishment, and a host of other benefits that are healthy for the mind and body. Today there
are numerous gardening tools
for seniors and methods to assist gardeners who are experiencing the march of time. Raised bed gardens are one of those tools. Enjoying gardening late in life provides more than health benefits. It can also stretch pocketbooks. Seniors are often on fixed incomes and find it difficult to afford some necessities. Growing food in a garden stretches the tight budget and ensures a well-rounded diet.
If you are interested in helping out with the raised bed project
at Forks Senior Center, please
call (517) 629-3842. If you
would like to learn more about
the Albion Community Gardens project, please contact Dick Porter, President, at (517) 745-7491 or visit them on Facebook at Albion Community Gardens.
Each checkup takes about 20 minutes – this is not a driving test or mechanical inspection. To schedule your 20-minute appointment for Monday, June 11, 9 to noon, please call (269) 558-6150. The event will be held at Heritage Commons, 13444 Preston Drive, Marshall. Appointment spaces are limited, so don’t wait! CarFit is an educational program developed by AAA, AARP, and the American Occupational Therapy Association.
With spring on its way out and summer upon us, are you itching to get outside? With little supplies needed, here are a few activities you can do with your loved one while enjoying the outdoors. Create a planter of your favorite flowers. This planter could keep your loved one busy watering and weeding throughout the summer. String cheerios for the birds, fill a bird feeder or round up a pine cone, spread on peanut butter and roll it in bird seed. Enjoy watching the birds come and go. Look through old family photos and reminisce about past memories. Lastly, try a “picnic” on the porch while listening to your favorite music.
You may enjoy this quick, easy and tasty “picnic” recipe.
Chicken Pastry Puffs
Mix together, 1 can cooked chicken (found near tuna), 1 small can sliced mushrooms, 4 oz. softened cream cheese, dash garlic salt, black pepper to taste. Open 1 can crescent rolls, press seam together of two triangles to make four flat squares, divide chicken mixture onto the four squares to make a “pouch”. Melt 3 tablespoons of butter, roll pouch in melted butter, and roll in stuffing mix. Slightly press down stuffing, lie on ungreased cookie sheet, seam side down. Bake at 375˚ for 30 minutes or until browned. You may make ahead of time and freeze, bake frozen pockets at 375˚ for 45 minutes.
CarFit at Heritage Commons
By: Cathleen Knoll, Senior Center Manager Heritage Commons
If you ask what keeps people independent as they age, most might say their health. What about driving a car? If you are driving a car it keeps you mobile and independent. Make sure that you are driving as safely and comfortably as you can. To assure this, consider attending a “CarFit” event for a car/driver “fit.” CarFit is a FREE, interactive and AARP educational program that teaches participants how to make their personal vehicle “fit” them to increase safety and mobility when
they hit the road. This program is sponsored by Oaklawn Hospital and hosted by Heritage Commons Senior Enrichment Center. A certified program CarFit instructor and Occupational Therapist will be on hand to review 12 key areas of your fit to your car such as:
• Adequate space from the steering wheel.
• Proper seat belt use.
• Properly adjusted head
• Learn how to use and adjust
your safety devices.
Nursing homes used to be the only choice for older adults or disabled persons who needed help caring for themselves. Today you have options.
One program run by CareWell Services Southwest, the local Area Agency on Aging, is the MI Choice Waiver Program. Through this program, eligible adults,
18 and over, who meet income and asset criteria can receive Medicaid-covered services like those provided by nursing homes, and can stay in their own home or another residential setting.
You will work with a nurse or social worker to develop a person- centered plan made specially for you or your loved one. Services that are available to you include:
• Chore Services
• Home delivered meals
• Respite services
• Adult day services
• Home modifications
• Non-medical transportation
• Home Medical supplies and
• Personal Care
• Personal emergency response
• Counseling
• Training in a variety of
independent living skills
• Coordination of support
• Community transition services
CareWell Services Southwest is the local MI Choice Waiver agency, covering Barry, Berrien, Branch, Calhoun, Cass, Kalamazoo, St. Joseph, and Van Buren counties. To find out what services may be available to you, call CareWell Services at 1-800- 626-6719. Call us! We’re to help!

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