Give Back: Council on Aging shares how they’re helping during holidays

A 'pandemic powerhouse' for COVID-19 response

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Did COVID-19 affect how you think about giving back to the Chatham community?

“I am very proud that United Way of Chatham County called our Council on Aging ‘a pandemic powerhouse’ for how we responded to COVID-19 and continue to assist seniors, their families and the overall community,” remarked Dennis Streets, director of the Chatham County Council on Aging.

After closing its two centers to in-facility programming on March 6, 2020, the Council focused on new ways to deliver programs while still providing necessary assistance. It expanded community partnerships, created virtual programming, maintained frequent participants and helped a growing number of seniors with meals, home care, supplies and much more.

What’s unique about your program?

While many organizations touch the lives of older adults, the Chatham County Council on Aging has a distinguished history of serving as the primary portal for seniors seeking information, assistance, and social engagement. Since 1974, when three African-American community leaders founded the Council as a nonprofit, it has been driven to help seniors stay healthy, active and able to live safely at home. Never has this mission been more important than under COVID-19. While the breadth of its programs responds to the needs and interests of all seniors, the Council emphasizes serving those who are socially and economically needy.

How can readers get involved in the Council’s mission?

In undertaking its ambitious mission, the Chatham County Council on Aging depends on many sources of support, including its ongoing 2021 annual appeal. As it does not charge fees for any services, the Council depends on volunteers, donors, consumer contributions, and sponsors to supplement its public funding. The Council especially appreciates the County’s support and awareness of the importance of senior services. Older adults represent more than a third of Chatham’s population, with the fastest growing age group those aged 85 and older.

“Help us continue to make a positive difference,” Streets said.


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