In the early 2000s, Reston for a Lifetime editor was seeking senior housing for her then 80 year-old mother in central Florida. Living in Northern Virginia made this task even more challenging. Searching the web, she discovered “geriatric care managers” who guide family caregivers with decisions to ensure quality care for those they love. Over a number of years, an Orlando-based provider assisted in identifying independent living choices, assisted living and subsequently nursing care. Their guidance with the Medicaid application was invaluable.
Since the early 2000s, geriatric care managers, now called aging life care managers, have taken on many more tasks---from physical problems to mental health and dementia-related problems. They attend doctor appointments and facilitate communication between doctor, client, and family. These professionals help determine types of services, including home health and hospice.
Care manager services are paid by the patient directly. Certain long-term care insurance plans include coverage for these services. In selecting a care manager, here are a few questions to ask:
Life care managers may have backgrounds in nursing, social work, counseling, gerontology, mental health or occupational therapy. Like other health professions, managers must meet certain standards (Aging Life Care Professional ) as established by the profession. To find a life care manager in the DC area, click here for the Mid-Atlantic Resource Directory that also includes a listing of elder law attorneys.
Universal Design focuses on the environment to ensure it can be accessed, understood and used to the greatest extent possible by all people regardless of their age, size, ability or disability. To explore what this means for remaining in one’s home, check out these resources.
AARP has created the HomeFit Guide with ideas from simple do-it-yourself fixes to improvements that are more involved and require skilled expertise. A check-list of 33 questions covers interior topics such as location of kitchen workspaces, accessibility of fire extinguisher within reach of the oven or stove, design of faucets, lighting in staircases, and shower with step-free entry. Topics from the exterior check list focus on visibility of the street address so emergency responders can locate the home, assuring entrances are free of clutter, handrails on both sides of all steps and stairways. The Guide provides worksheets, a HomeFit quiz, tips on hiring a contractor and remodeling costs.
Another resource is the Certified Aging in Place Specialists CAPS program. The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) in collaboration with National Association Home Builders 55+ Housing Council and others developed this program. The CAPS curriculum includes courses in universal design, understanding the changing mobility of clients and aging, green design, and business and marketing principles to name just a few. While there are no fool proof ways for hiring the professional, the CAPS designation is an indication the industry recognizes a real need in both a human and business dimension.
Breakfast Briefing January 28
What Should Families Look for in Hospice Care?
Jerald Roberts, Capital Caring Health, will answer these questions at our next Reston for a Lifetime/Western Fairfax Advocates for Healthy Aging (WFAHA) breakfast. Also mark your calendar for upcoming briefings—Feb 25 on managing stress; and March 24 with Carol Edelstein, Shepard Center of Great Falls.
What/Who: Breakfast Briefing with Jerald Roberts, Capital Caring
When: January 28, 2020
8:30 am - Mix, mingle and enjoy a light breakfast
Speaker: 9:00 to 9:50 am
Where: Hunter Woods at Trails Edge, follow signs to event location
2222 Colts Neck Road, Reston, VA 20191
Parking: Parking garage is to the right. Pull up to the garage door and let them know you are attending so they can open the door.
RSVP: by Jan. 24 to Sharon.firstname.lastname@example.org
Ever wondered about the history of the world’s oldest adult and how he makes it through the holiday season given a rigorous travel schedule? For a tongue and cheek conversation with Santa Claus, click here for this Aging Matters interview. Santa, known as St. Nicholas and Father Christmas among other names, is 1136 years old. He met Mrs. Claus, who is a mere youngster at 1136, at a reindeer farm in Lapland. To learn the origin of his red suit, how he explains the presence of numerous “Clauses” in department stores and movie theatres, and other trivia, enjoy this fun interview.
Outside of the holiday season, Aging Matters Radio, is a weekly interview program on Arlington's community radio station WERA - LP Arlington 96.7 FM featuring guests with expertise about aging related subjects of interest to older adults and their families. Every Tuesday from 2:00 to 3:00 pm, host Cheryl Beversdorf interviews experts about issues that help older adults live longer and better. To hear all radio programs, visit www.mixcloud.com/AgingMatters/
Aging Matters TV Show is a monthly video program on Arlington's community television
broadcast, Sundays at 5:30 pm and Wednesdays at 6 pm in Arlington and streaming live on www.arlingtonmedia.org. The show features interviews with individuals with expertise about aging related topics and demonstrations of how these areas can benefit older adults and their families. To view all TV episodes, visit :YouTube Channel
Reston, Virginia is intent on being age-intentional. That means there are no senior centers. Instead, older adult programming is blended with those of children and youth at the Reston Community Center. There’s also the Robert E. Simon Children’s Center inside the Cameron Glen Care Center nursing home, where children and older residents interact daily, making the Care Center an intergenerational shared site.
The outcomes spring from the community’s intergenerational programming roots that run nearly five decades deep, when The Reston Association (formerly the Reston Homeowner’s Association) started in 1965, a year after real estate entrepreneur Robert E. Simon founded Reston.
Today, the Association continues to uphold Simon’s belief that open spaces and outdoor recreational amenities serve as meeting grounds for people of all ages.
Those amenities for 58,000+ residents include five village centers and one town center spread throughout nearly 12 square miles, while a 55-mile paved pathway system connects the neighborhoods – encouraging Reston’s young and old to reach out across economic, ethnic and social backgrounds daily.
Responding to a Fairfax County initiative “Reinventing Your Neighborhood,” the community founded Reston for a Lifetime in 2009. This group of concerned citizens and organizations help create solutions to make Reston a great place to live for people of all ages and abilities. They accomplish this by coordinating more than a dozen different organizations, all of which focus on providing intergenerational support and engagement.
The Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce also encourages intergenerational collaborations through its Ethics Day event along with its mentorship and entrepreneurship programs.
There’s approximately $7 million in Reston Community Center’s annual budget that supports programs in aquatics, leisure and learning, as well as arts and events for all ages.
The community comes together for its Reston Multicultural Festival and to cheer on their youth at the sports leagues’ opening day celebrations. Reston’s founder, Simon, is a fixture at most functions. He’s also symbolic of how significant the elders’ presences are to Reston’s future generations.
The intergenerational bonds are present in a public art project that involves a local teen center collaborating on a mural with older adults from the Hunters Woods Fellowship House. Young and old get together for the annual Grandparents and Grandchildren Nature Walk at the Walker Nature Center. Those connections also result, in part, from older volunteers staffing many of Reston’s youth-specific programs.
While they celebrate their five decades as an age-optimized community, it’s clear that Reston’s goal is to stay in a game, where a single day's work is an achievement for eternity.
Description of Community:
Reston is a census-designated place (CDP) in Fairfax County, Virginia, United States, within the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. An internationally known planned community founded in 1964, this award-winning community was built with the goal of revolutionizing post-World War II concepts of land use and residential/corporate development in suburban America.
Demographics (Source: U.S. Bureau 2010 QuickFacts):
Websites: www.reston.org, www.restontowncenter.com
Current Program Examples:
Reston Association offers dozens of programs that attracts residents of all ages, including an annual Grandparents and Grandchildren Nature Walk at the Walker Nature Center.
Reston, VA - MetLife Foundation and Generations United proudly announced that Reston, VA has been selected to receive one of four MetLife Foundation/Generations United America's Best Intergenerational Communities Awards. The awards are designed to heighten awareness of the importance intergenerational solidarity plays in building strong, supportive communities.
"We congratulate Reston, VA for earning this designation. It takes a great deal of effort and forward thinking to create a community where members of every generation want to live," notes Donna Butts, executive director of Generations United. "Reston, VA has worked to ensure its residents enjoy a vibrant, meaningful place to live, are treated with respect and care, and have ample opportunity to work together for the betterment of all."
"MetLife Foundation understands the value of programs that encourage generations to work together for the benefit of the entire community," explained Dennis White, president and chief executive officer, MetLife Foundation. "Communities that care for and engage all members - regardless of age - deepen bonds between the generations and set an important example for other communities to follow. We applaud the four communities selected to receive the 2014 Best Intergenerational Communities Award, as well as the two National Finalists."
The other award recipients are the communities of: Maricopa County, AZ; City of Parkland, FL and Village of Shorewood, WI. Two other communities were named National Finalists: Miami Gardens, FL and Rye, NY.
A blue-ribbon panel of judges selected the winning entries from among a host of applicants from across the country. Robert Blancato, former executive director of the White House Conference on Aging and a partner in Matz, Blancato & Associates, served as a judge in the selection process. Blancato, who is also a strategic advisor for Generations United noted, "It is said you can live anywhere, but that does not make it a livable community. These awards signify that a critical component of a livable community is one that fosters an environment where generations live and work together. "
Presentation of this year's awards will occur on March 25 at the Cannon House Building, Room 121 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. The Best Intergenerational Communities awards program is made possible with a grant from MetLife Foundation.
About the MetLife Foundation: MetLife Foundation was created in 1976 to continue MetLife's long tradition of corporate contributions and community involvement. Today, the Foundation is dedicated to advancing financial inclusion, committing $200 million over the next five years to help build a secure future for individuals and communities around the world. MetLife Foundation is affiliated with MetLife, Inc, a leading global provider of insurance, annuities and employee benefit programs, serving 90 million customers. Through its subsidiaries and affiliates, MetLife holds leading market positions in the United States, Japan, Latin America, Asia, Europe and the Middle East.
About Generations United: For nearly three decades, Generations United www.gu.org has been the catalyst for policies and practices stimulating cooperation and collaboration among generations, evoking the vibrancy, energy and sheer productivity that result when people of all ages come together. We believe that we can only be successful in the face of our complex future if generational diversity is regarded as a national asset and fully leveraged.