Get more information at coverva.org.
Your help is needed to connect Virginians to health coverage.
Beginning in early 2019, more adults living in Virginia will have access to quality low cost health coverage.
Get more information at coverva.org.
Your help is needed to connect Virginians to health coverage.
(Written by the Greater Richmond Age Wave Team for United Way)
This has been our recipe for the Social Isolation Risk Index (SIRI) project for the past three years.
What is Social Isolation? Click here to learn about the issue.
The SIRI project combines evidence from scientific literature, regional data analysis and community-based engagement to transform how we define and address social isolation and social connectedness in the Richmond metro area. The project kicked off in 2015, when project partners brought national experts together with aging and disability service providers in a region-wide symposium called Come Together. The symposium was attended by 150 key stakeholders, 97 percent of whom identified at least one action they could take to prevent or reduce social isolation among older adults.
In 2016, our interdisciplinary team researched social isolation risk factors and identified their matching data fields in No Wrong Door, a statewide online case management system. The following factors correlated to perceived social dissatisfaction in our region: family or financial conflict, educational attainment of less than a high school degree, living in apartments/multi-family dwellings. By approaching social isolation consequences proactively instead of reactively, we can make Richmond a better, healthier and more sustainable place for everyone to grow old. To that end we have reached close to 2,000 individuals with research-based information about social isolation and reached media circulation of 3.5 million+ with public messaging.
In focus groups held in rural, suburban, and urban localities of our region, older adults identified transportation as their greatest barrier to social connectedness. These results, along with the SIRI analysis, led Age Wave to link social isolation to livability with a goal to increase mobility and transportation infrastructure to decrease social isolation of older adults and persons with disabilities. Age Wave’s 2017 Transportation & Accessibility forum, attended by 100 people, resulted in 90 percent learning about transportation resources and sharing information with others.
By then we were ready for a deeper dive. Last summer we mapped the SIRI findings to identify seven neighborhoods in the region where people might especially benefit from increased connectedness. Urban planning and gerontology students canvassed these neighborhoods and conducted assessments of the relationship between the built environment and social connectedness. This spring, students used these findings to research and present actionable community advocacy opportunities to guide and inspire stakeholders.
Age Wave has contributed to the national body of research on the topic by presenting findings to the Gerontological Society of America, Southern Gerontological Association and Aging2.0. The interdisciplinary research team from VCU Gerontology and VCU Center for Urban and Regional Analysis recently published an article in The Gerontological Society of America Public Policy and Aging report, “Social Isolation and the Built Environment: A Call for Research and Advocacy.” The article recommends the expansion of information collected in uniform assessment tools to include key variables that capture how the individual interacts with their physical environment such as: transportation options, sense of safety in the community and proximity to or preferences for community amenities.
There is much more to come from this project as we find new ways to expand and enhance this recipe and bring more groups to the table. Interested in contributing to this cookbook? Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
The authors wish to thank the following project partners: Greater Richmond Age Wave, United Way of Greater Richmond & Petersburg, VCU Gerontology, Virginia Department for the Aging and Rehabilitative Services, Senior Connections, No Wrong Door and VCU’s Center for Urban and Regional Analysis.
A beautiful evening with friends, celebrations and sharing of community projects and research by Greater Richmond Age Wave action teams and VCU Gerontology students -- what could be better than that? We added pizza and beer to the mix! Thank you all for a wonderful event!
Age Wave Scholar projects featured:
A NORC in Green Park, by Emily Daidone, Evelyn Beaumont and Caitlin Lange (Sponsor: Richmond Office on Aging and Persons with Disabilities)
Dreams are Forever, By Nicole Hunt (Marion Cotter King Award) (Sponsor: Anthem HealthKeepers)
Toolkit for Successful Downsizing Conversations, by Audra Backaitis (Sponsor: Legacy Navigator)
Homelessness Among Elders, by Raleigh Priddy (Iris A Parham Award)
Person-Centered Trauma-Informed Care, by Gigi Amateau (YWCA Pat Asch Fellowship for Social Justice)
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VCU Gerontology master’s degree candidate Nicole Hunt's project to acknowledge, identify and carry out the wishes and dreams in long-term care facilities is underway! These wishes, from long-term care residents at the Trio Healthcare-Elizabeth Adam Crump Health and Rehabilitation Center, are sponsored by Anthem HealthKeepers Plus.
So far, wish recipients have enjoyed chess lessons, a comedy show, a projector to watch movies, and dinner out with the family. Next up: exercise equipment requested for increasing strength and endurance.
To learn more about the Age Wave Scholar program or to sponsor a scholar, contact Catherine MacDonald:
VCU Gerontology master’s degree candidate Nicole Hunt has launched an innovative project in the name of person-centered care and good cheer. As the Age Wave Wish Advocate Scholar, Hunt will be working with older adults to acknowledge, identify and carry out the wishes and dreams in long-term care facilities that may not be addressed because of budget restrictions, transportation and/or physical limitations.
Hunt’s Greater Richmond Age Wave project is currently carrying out a 2017 Elder Holiday Wish List, which will run through Valentine’s Day. These wishes from long-term care residents at the Trio Healthcare-Elizabeth Adam Crump Health and Rehabilitation Center are sponsored by Anthem HealthKeepers Plus. The first wish was fulfilled December 28, when a local comedian performed a show for a group at Elizabeth Adam Crump Health and Rehabilitation Center.
Generosity has been a common theme among the wishes collected by Hunt. Angie, who wished for the comedy show, requested the event with the everyone’s happiness in mind, including staff. Other wishes include exercise equipment for all to use, a screen for everyone to enjoy movies, chess lessons and dinner with family.
Hunt has named the project “Dreams are Forever.” To begin, she interviewed people at Elizabeth Adam Crump Health and Rehabilitation Center. “I encouraged them to think back and reflect on what makes them happy, and what they most enjoy doing if money, transportation and their health was not an issue,” Hunt said.
“I found that many of the residents have a strong desire to help and give to their fellow residents because they also see needs that require fulfilling.”
Wish fulfillment serves more than just a momentary purpose. Hunt aims to help reduce generalized decline caused by social isolation in long-term care facilities by promoting activity, socialization, engagement, fun and person-centeredness.
Hunt says, “What would these older adults dream of doing? What would put a smile on their face? What would make them feel warm and giddy inside? Without a doubt participation in the Dreams are Forever Project would.”
To learn more about the Age Wave Scholar program or to sponsor a scholar, contact Catherine MacDonald at email@example.com.
The Age Wave team is so pleased to share DispatchHealth's Community Engagement Manager Mary Catharine Kolbert's speech as a new Age Wave Sustaining Partner. Kolbert has been an invaluable member of Age Wave since its inception, and her speech takes us on a trip down memory lane. Thank you DispatchHealth and Mary Catharine!
"I’m very excited for DispatchHealth to be a sustaining partner with Age Wave!
"For those of you who don’t know me, and I can’t wait to meet you if we don’t, but my name is Mary Catharine Kolbert and I’m the community engagement manager for DispatchHealth. I will tell you a little about DispatchHealth in a minute, but I want to start with how personally satisfying it is to be here in front of you, representing DispatchHealth as a sustaining partner.
"I am remembering being a part of the conversation before Age Wave was even Age Wave – over eight years ago, a round table, at United Way, talking about what we, as a community, needed to do to embrace and support older adults. And now look at us! I have been very fortunate that each turn in my career has enabled me to be a part of the growth of the Age Wave.
"So enough about me – let’s talk about DispatchHealth and why we decided to become a sustaining partner of Age Wave. DispatchHealth is on-demand urgent care delivered in the home. We bring an Nurse Practitioner or Physicians Assistant along with an EMT to your home where we deliver person-centered, high quality care, at a lower cost. We take care of patients as young as 2 weeks up to 107 years old. We are passionate about providing the right care, at the right time, in the right place.
"So why Age Wave? DispatchHealth is providing a new vision of healthcare. Isn’t that what Age Wave is doing around aging? Our mindsets are similar, so we want to be at the table and be a part of the creative conversation to help #disruptageism. DispatchHealth is helping people age with intention by offering them choice for their urgent care needs. We want to share data about what we’ve seen with our patients, both clinically and, because we are in the home, what going on socially as well. And DispatchHealth wants to promote forward thinking, asking 'why not,' and going against the grain – just like we have in the healthcare space. Doesn’t that sound like what Age Wave is doing around aging?
"I thought I knew about Age Wave but I have learned so much more today! The work that Sara Morris has done around transportation; the Neighborhood Livability platform of transportation; the scorecard for aging well and livability – DispatchHealth wants to be a part of those conversations as we can be a part of the solution!
"As you can probably tell, I am very excited to have DispatchHealth be a sustaining partner and we are looking forward to what the future holds for the Greater Richmond community!"
Members, Supporters and Sustaining Partners recently attended an energetic Age Wave Leadership Meeting. Five presentations rotated around the room, sharing program updates and successes while soliciting feedback from stakeholders.
Annie Rhodes: Master's of Gerontology 2017 graduate Annie Rhodes shared outcomes and future planning from her role as Age Wave City Council Scholar. She worked under Councilwoman Cynthia Newbille in Richmond's 7th District. Rhodes organized six community flu shot clinics, established partnerships with health and wellness organizations and helped create an inclusive legislative packet for the 2018 General Assembly. Goals for 2018 include established wellness clinics in each independent living community and to establish a No Wrong Door partner to participate in the initiative.
Interested in getting involved?
• Offer to sponsor an event in the 7th district (Blood Pressure Screenings/Birthday Party/Exercise Class)
• Attend the Senior Resource Fair on February 14, 2018
• Become a partner in the East End initiative
Sara Morris: Master's of Gerontology 2017 graduate Sara Morris shared her findings as Age Wave Transportation Liaison Scholar. Her transportation advocacy work included a community survey and outreach to transportation stakeholders and planners. Findings were collated into five pillars, which have helped the Neighborhood Livability action team develop an advocacy agenda. Download the file to review her one page handout that explains the pillars.
Other rotating tables:
Metrics of Wellness with Age Wave Director of Grants and Research Gigi Amateau, where she shared and received feedback on the upcoming Wellness Equity Scorecard -- stay tuned!
Age Wave ACTION with Age Wave Director of Strategy and Innovation Catherine MacDonald and Business for Life Action Team Chair Beth Ludden.
And Membership and Supporters discussion with Dr. E. Ayn Welleford and Age Wave Director of Outreach Delores Kimbrough.
A group of VCU Gerontology master's degree students have been named as the first Greater Richmond Age Wave Scholars. The Age Wave Scholar program connects students with opportunities to impact the community, contribute gerontological expertise, and expand their professional network and portfolios.
Emily Daidone, Age Wave Community Advocate Scholar, is utilizing her gerontological expertise to develop evaluations, criteria and reports on the topic of social isolation by identifying locations that government/advocates identify as places that would benefit from analysis. Emily's work will also emphasize transportation and advocacy opportunities.
Annie Rhodes, Age Wave City Council Scholar, is working with Richmond City Councilwoman Cynthia Newbille on budget planning related to aging in place and medical/wellness issues for seniors, as well as thought leadership on policy and practices.
Raleigh Priddy, Age Wave Community Planning Scholar, is collaborating with Homeward and Age Wave in developing a regional taskforce to connect homeless service systems with the aging services network. The project will identify senior housing resources, pathways, and prevention strategies to synthesize solutions for older adults experiencing or at-risk of homelessness.
itizens of the world all require transportation, but often and unfortunately many of us remain underserved. We require mobility and services to get to work, see our families, and access the world in a manner many may take for granted. The team at Accessible Olli, a self-driving mini-bus, would like to change that by creating solutions to make true and complete mobility accessible to all of us.
For this challenge, teams from around the world were asked to design the most inclusive experience for Olli riders of all ages and abilities, focusing on one or more of four specific categories of needs: mobility impairments, visual impairments, hearing impairments, and cognitive disabilities.
Our Age Wave team shared ideas to invent Olli Connect. Olli Connect is an idea for an RFID-based tool that enables Olli to offer personalized care for each rider with the flick of a wrist or the tap of a card. Designed by a team of gerontologists, livable community advocates, and caseworkers with experience in public transportation, Olli Connect would help all riders feel autonomous.
After review by the Olli team, our entry was accepted! See it here: https://launchforth.io/AgeWave/olli-connect/overview/?r=a85c5726-3404-4e37-8e09-84d20c886a21
#engaged — people of all ages are connected through various volunteer, educational, or leisure pursuits that enhance individual quality of life and communities.
#livable — Our region will offer housing transportation, and design features that enable residents to live safely and with dignity through all the stages of their lives.
#stable — Individuals of all ages are able to obtain jobs and to access services that help to build and safeguard assets, plan for retirement, lead productive lifestyles, and care for loved ones.
#well — Our region has effective and sustainable health and wellness resources that are coordinated, accessible, and well utilized.
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