Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

December 20, 2012

Seneca Area Agency on Aging suggests ways to give to elderly or disabled friends and family


Daily Iowegian

CENTERVILLE — Seneca Area Agency on Aging ask this holiday season to make it special for an older or disabled family member, friend or neighbor by showing them our “Iowa spirit” of kindness and generosity.

A few ideas that may brighten the holiday for older or disabled Iowans could include:

• The gift of friendship:  call, write, email and visit on a regular basis.

• For Iowans 60 or older, a week or monthly lunch ticket for congregate meals (check your local Area Agency on Aging).

• A pedometer for measuring distance while walking or a walking stick to assist them.

• A “coupon” redeemable for you to run errands with or for them a few times a month.

• A book of stamps and pre-addressed mailing labels to frequently mailed addresses.

• Tickets for two or a season pass to the theatre, a play, a movie, a concert or a museum (include transportation).

• Pre-paid cab or bus ‘tickets’ for rides when they want them.

• A large print magazine subscription, large print books, and/or audio books.

• Low vision products such as a large TV remote, magnifiers, large print calendars, large face playing cards, or large button telephone.

• Install devices or home modifications to help prevent falls or accidents (such as hand rails).

• Gift certificates to grocery stores, restaurants, hair salon or barber.

• Gift certificate for monthly house cleaning.

• Offer to rake leaves, shovel snow, or mow the lawn on a regular basis throughout the year.

• Prepay their utility bill for a month (electric, cable, oil, or telephone).

• A gas card for travel or prepaid phone calling card for long-distance phone calls to family and friends.

• Calendar with family birthdays clearly marked.

• Cook extra meals and place in individual freezable containers.

• Wash their windows inside and out.

• Offer yourself as a willing, cheerful helper for the day to do chores (change light bulbs, put a new battery in the smoke detector, change the furnace filter etc…).

• Install devices to prevent crime or vandalism (deadbolts, door hole viewer, alarm system).

• Arrange for energy saving improvements like installing weather stripping, storm doors/windows.

• Deliver a fresh basket of seasonal fruit or healthy snacks in person a few times over the year.

• Give them the gift of taking them to breakfast or lunch once a month.

For more information on Family Caregiver or other senior concerns, call Seneca Area Agency on Aging at (800) 642-6522.