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Monthly Archives

May 2021

Willie the dog looking across the camera

United Way of Logan County Helps LifeCare Alliance Pilot Senior PetCare Program to Meals-on-Wheels Clients!

By | Featured News, Senior PetCare

Thanks to the generous support of our pet-loving friends at the United Way of Logan County, we are currently piloting a rollout of the Senior PetCare program in Logan County, offering food, treats, and toys along with much-needed veterinary care! Clients are eligible once they have been enrolled in the Meals-on-Wheels program for 60 days. In fact, the program has already helped cover veterinary care for two pets for Meals-on-Wheels clients in Logan County with the funding received from the United Way.

More than 70% of LifeCare Alliance’s clients own at least one cat or dog, and the bond with their animal is very strong. Candice LaFramboise, Senior Coordinator for Corporate and Community Engagement at LifeCare Alliance runs the Senior PetCare program says, “Many Meals-on-Wheels clients live on a fixed income, and offering veterinary care to qualified clients can ensure that their pets are happy and healthy. When the pets are well cared for, the clients will be too.” For some, their pet may be the only companion they have contact with throughout the day.

The Agency first learned of the need for a pet-specific program in the mid-2000s after discovering that some Meals-on-Wheels clients were feeding all or a portion of their meal to their pet. These individuals face barriers to obtaining pet supplies on their own, such as not having enough money to buy pet food or being physically incapable of getting to the store. As a result, LifeCare Alliance began accepting donations of pet food, treats, and even toys for clients living with companion pets pet welfare donations in 2007 and expanded the program to offer veterinary assistance in 2008. One Senior PetCare client explained the program the best when she said, “The most important part of the program is the help that I get for my pets; these are things I wouldn’t be able to do otherwise. I’ve had my dog for 14 years.”

Although LifeCare Alliance’s Meals-on-Wheels Program operates in five counties in central Ohio—Franklin, Madison, Champaign, Logan, and Marion—Senior PetCare has primarily served clients in Franklin County. In 2020, Senior PetCare provided over 74,000 pounds of pet food to clients’ pets and covered vet care for 42 animals. In the first quarter of 2021, the program made 352 client visits and delivered 3,430 bags of pet food.

To establish the program in Logan County, we are providing pet food and veterinary assistance to our clients in need. This involves expanding pet food deliveries through our Meals-on-Wheels and AniMeals (pet food) delivery routes. We have also introduced veterinary care assistance to eligible clients in the county, which covers wellness exams, vaccinations, medications, and/or flea & tick preventatives. We want our clients to continue visiting their local vets in Logan County, so we will work with the clients and vets to pay for veterinary visits thus injecting funds into the county economy. The Agency continues outreach efforts in Logan County to gain additional volunteer, in-kind, and monetary support for the program.

-By Crystal Kurzen, Grants Manager, LifeCare Alliance

Learn more

Click here to visit LifeCare Alliance’s Senior PetCare page and learn more about the Agency’s program that helps older adults and their companion pets stay together.

Claire Eastman delivers a meal to a central Ohio resident.

Columbus Dispatch: Meals on Wheels needs volunteers to handle demand tied to COVID-19 pandemic

By | Featured News, LifeCare Alliance in the News, Meals-on-Wheels

Picture and story published May 17, 2021, by the The Columbus Dispatch:

LifeCare Alliance’s daily Meals-on-Wheels delivery is a huge help to central Ohio residents like Deloris Harrington, who is undergoing chemotherapy and needs to stay home to recover from treatments.

From March 2019 to February 2020, the central Ohio Meals on Wheels program served 4,751 different customers. A year later, from March 2020 through February 2021, that number grew to 7,873, a 66% increase.

That increase in business, in turn, has led to an urgent need for more volunteers.

Click here to read the full story.

Click here to volunteer and help LifeCare Alliance reach all those in need of services.

 

IMPACT Safety logo banner

IMPACT Safety Teaches People with Disabilities to Protect Themselves

By | Featured News, IMPACT Safety
IMPACT Ability Students

IMPACT Safety looks to return to in-person events when deemed safe.

People with developmental disabilities face a higher-than-average risk of assault, abuse and bullying. But there’s plenty they can do – no matter the level of disability – to boost their emotional and physical safety.

“Self-defense is way bigger than hitting people,” Matt O’Brien, an instructor and trainer with IMPACT Safety, said during a recent class. “Karate is really good for one thing. But what we’re teaching is really good for all this other stuff.”

O’Brien and his colleague Olivia Caldeira are working with about a dozen ARC Industries participants who signed up for a multi-week course on personal-safety skills for people with developmental disabilities. IMPACT Safety, a program of LifeCare Alliance, has decades of experience helping to empower vulnerable populations.

“It all starts with, ‘How does this person make their wants or needs known?’” Caldeira said. “It’s important to give people choice and a sense of control.”

Everyone, for example, can learn to convey a “stop” message, whether with hands out and a firm voice, or through gestures and expressions. Program participants get plenty of practice on that front when O’Brien plays the role of a shady guy making unwanted approaches. And everyone, whether they are able to speak or not, whether they walk or use a wheelchair, finds ways to tell him to get lost.

“Do you have to let a stranger get close to you? No!,” O’Brien told the class. “If you can remember stop signs, you’ve got 90% of what we’re telling you.”

Because people with developmental disabilities often rely on others for assistance with daily tasks and decisions, it can be difficult for some to realize that they have the right to set and enforce personal boundaries. “Perpetrators are drawn to people who are vulnerable,” Caldeira said. “We have to make sure people with disabilities are empowered. It’s about body autonomy for people who might not have had that.”

Letting go of a passive mindset also is important when interacting with caregivers, seeking help or reporting abuse. “People are taught stranger danger, but if you look at the statistics, it’s usually someone they know,” Caldeira said.

Sessions focus on safety in various situations and settings, and also include self-calming strategies to reduce anxiety and stress.

For now, classes are virtual due to the coronavirus pandemic. But it hasn’t taken long for participants to get the hang of interacting with O’Brien and Caldeira on screen, and to embrace the empowerment message: During a one recent class, three people showed up in Superman shirts.

For more information or to schedule a workshop, email info@impactsafety.org or call 614-437-2967.

Published May 2021 in the Franklin County Board of Developmental Disabilities “Dateline” newsletter.

Help-at-Home logo

NBC4: LifeCare Alliance program offers household help to central Ohio’s seniors

By | Featured News, Help-at-Home Careers, LifeCare Alliance in the News

Story published May 4, 2021, by NBC4:

In honor of Older Americans Month, LifeCare Alliance wants others to know they are here to serve those older Ohioans through one of their programs.

LifeCare Alliance’s Help-at-Home provides homemaking and personal care services to older adults living in Franklin and Madison counties. The goal is to help seniors live in the comfort of their homes and to maintain an independent lifestyle.

One woman named Kathleen Henry is 101-years-old and said she’s been using the service for a few years now and is thankful for the program.

Click here to read the full story.

Click here to join the LifeCare Alliance team.

 

Mel Leiper receives Spirit Award

Madison Messenger: Meals on Wheels award goes to Mt. Sterling’s Mel Leiper

By | Featured News, LifeCare Alliance in the News, Meals-on-Wheels

Story published May 3, 2021, by the Madison Messenger:

LifeCare Alliance recently presented the Madison County Congregate Dining Spirit Award to longtime Meals-on-Wheels volunteer and Mount Sterling resident Marilyn “Mel” Leiper.

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March last year, LifeCare Alliance had to shut down the local dining center. Leiper helped the organization transition the residents to home-delivered meals.

“Even through some health issues, she continued to make sure everyone got meals who needed them. She is a top notch volunteer, and we are forever grateful for her,” said Tony Madison, LifeCare Alliance Meals-on-Wheels driver.

Click here to read the full story.

Click here to see the rest of the 2021 Spirit Award winners.