Nov. 7 training set for Douglas homebound seniors program | RecordCourier.com

Nov. 7 training set for Douglas homebound seniors program

Staff Reports

Calling a senior once a week, or a visiting once a month can mean so much to someone who is alone, or on hospice, or without friends or family to step in.

There are about 7,500 seniors in Douglas County, ages 60 and up, and 21 percent of these seniors live alone, according to the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office. Of those 65 and older, 41 percent report that they live alone and have a disability.

Decreased daily activities and social interactions leads to isolation and loneliness, experts say. Isolation affects those in many ways, increasing the risk of depression, cognitive decline and vulnerability to abuse and exploitation.

On Nov. 7, the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office will be holding a training meeting for those interested and those currently volunteering for the Sheriff’s Office Senior Program “Caring Neighbors.”

It is a program for calling and checking on seniors in Douglas County. All volunteers are background checked. Volunteers can call weekly and visit seniors in the community. The training class starts at 9 a.m. in the Sheriff’s Office Training room and will conclude at noon.

Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, working collaboratively with Elder Protective Services and Douglas County Social Services who genuinely care about the seniors in the community want to expand the program, but needs more volunteers to call and visit the seniors. These seniors have had a full career, raised families and contributed greatly to several generations. They are valued members of the community.

There are seniors in the community who may have monetary issues, health problems, family and neighborhood problems and do not know how to deal or have the knowledge to solve their problems.

The volunteers are their advocates. Caring Neighbor volunteers are trained in recognition of elder abuse and exploitation, knowledgeable in the services offered by Douglas County and are supervised by a DCSO sergeant for problems beyond their reach.

If you would like to attend this training and become a volunteer with DCSO call Sgt. Bernadette Smith at (775) 783-6461.