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Macy's check presentation to LifeCare Alliance at Macy's Polaris Fashion Place

LifeCare Alliance’s Partnership with Macy’s Leads to Stronger Communities

By | Columbus Cancer Clinic, Featured News

Macy’s 2021 check presentation to LifeCare Alliance pictured above. 

As we mark the one-year anniversary of quarantine, virtual events, and the COVID-19 pandemic, the need to work together and strengthen community collaboration has been essential in order to persevere. One such noteworthy partnership that LifeCare Alliance has shared is with Macy’s.

LifeCare Alliance’s partnership with Macy’s can be traced back to 2019, when the Agency was seeking a new venue to host Night of Hope and Support, our annual event that benefits clients with active cancer through the Heather Pick Spirit Fund of the Columbus Cancer Clinic. Macy’s at Polaris Fashion Place turned out to be the perfect fit for the event, and their team loves the work LifeCare Alliance does for the community. The manager, stylist, and the whole team at Macy’s believe in the awareness and empowerment Night of Hope provides to people living with cancer and the community at-large.

The Agency’s collaboration with Macy’s didn’t stop there. In November of last year, the store manager contacted LifeCare Alliance about an opportunity to nominate a local non-for-profit for COVID-19 relief. Because of our ongoing, trusted relationship, Macy’s nominated LifeCare Alliance and a grant was approved to support our clients.

Partnerships such as Macy’s effectively leverage the strengths of each party involved and apply it strategically to combat issues at the forefront like the pandemic. Building these relationships with a shared understanding and collective focus leads to stronger communities. Like Macy’s values of acceptance, respect, integrity, and giving back to the community, LifeCare Alliance strives to serve those in need through compassionate, responsive, quality care 365 days-a-year.

Thank you to Macy’s for their partnership and commitment in sharing our mission of leading the community in identifying and delivering health and nutrition services to meet the community’s changing needs.

-By Stephanie Rowe Bencic, LifeCare Alliance

Learn more

Watch the replay of 2020’s virtual Night of Hope and Support by clicking here!

LifeCare Alliance Mound Street Building Entrance

10TV: Need for in-home meals remains high in Columbus area

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

Photo and story published Mar. 14, 2021, by 10TV:

The need for home deliveries in the community is higher now than it was this time last year.

“Our Meals on Wheels program has shot up 65% last April, in numbers, and we are still up that high. In fact last week we were up 69%, higher than we were last March,” said Charles W. Gehring, President and CEO of LifeCare Alliance

Gehring suggests calling the Franklin County Office on Aging at (614) 525-5230 or LifeCare Alliance (614) 278-3130, to talk to a person who can help arrange an appointment and a ride to a vaccination site.

Click here to read the full story.

Diabetes Dayton logo

Dayton 24/7 Now: Local type 2 diabetics share feelings about COVID-19 vaccine eligibility

By | Featured News, LifeCare Alliance in the News

Story published Mar. 10, 2021, by the Dayton 24/7 Now:

Those with type 2 diabetes are eligible to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Montgomery County has one of the highest incidence rates for diabetes in the state.

Donna Queen is living with type 2 diabetes. She said her parents and siblings have it as well. She said this is life-changing news.

Chuck Gehring, President and CEO of LifeCare Alliance, said this news is especially important in the Miami Valley. LifeCare Alliance’s Diabetes Dayton provides free diabetes education and supplies like test strips and meters to the community.

Click here to read the full story.

Logan with a big smile on his face

Dealing with Diabetes: Responsibility vs Fear

By | Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Featured News, It Takes a Family

Responsibility is a necessity when it comes to living with diabetes. Diabetes doesn’t go away; it doesn’t take a break; it doesn’t give you a night off. As adults, we are accustomed to having responsibility. But it really breaks my heart sometimes to think about how much responsibility I expect my nine-year-old to have.

I have always been a “consequence driven” person. As early as I remember, I stopped doing things because they could potentially be dangerous or put me in positions where I might be made fun of.

What I used to consider the “responsible” trait, I have now realized was me living with a lot of fear. I was afraid of all the bad things that could happen. I could hurt myself, look awkward doing something for the first time, or not like something I ate.

Now I realize I was only looking at one side of the coin. I was not looking at all the GOOD “what ifs.” What if I had fun?! What if I liked the food?! What if I found a new hobby that I really enjoyed?!

I don’t want Logan, or his sister, to turn responsibility into FEAR. So while diabetes doesn’t give us a break, we don’t have to create fear while we live with it.

Part of that starts with what many of us strive to do…live without restriction! I am always amazed when people ask, “He can’t eat that can he, since he’s diabetic?” It really comes down to educating him (And myself, honestly!) that we are not striving for a restrictive diet. We are striving for a balanced diet. We want to have all the fun stuff: the birthday cake; the ice cream; the big bowls of yummy mac & cheese. AND we want to have the healthy food that fuels our body in a way that builds us up.

Then we get to recognize where we can incorporate a little more flexibility! Again, it’s about balance. Diabetes can feel very heavy sometimes with all the necessities, planning ahead, and device changes. How we keep those things less restrictive is to allow fun in other areas. Maybe it’s about having more friends over to play than we normally would be willing to have, or it’s going for an extra scoop of ice cream on the special days. Maybe it is even playing before homework gets done.

Whatever helps you balance the responsibility with still being a kid…LET IT WORK FOR YOU!

There is no right or wrong answer…so practice and see what works. We are all figuring it out as we go, which, in itself, can feel like a responsibility! Don’t give yourself more pressure than you have to.

About

Family photo of Dunlap family

This blog post is PART ELEVEN of IT TAKES A FAMILY: LIFE WITH TYPE 1, written by Lindsay Dunlap.

The Dunlap family lives with two generations of T1D, and Lindsay is graciously sharing their experience with us. If you’d like to connect with Lindsay, she’d be happy to talk about the highs and lows with you at lindsay@lindsaydunlapcoaching.com.

Learn More

Click here to learn more about the Central Ohio Diabetes Association, including support for families through programs such as Camp Hamwi.

Volunteer looks over Senior PetCare AniMeal route sheet in car.

Columbus Dispatch: LifeCare Alliance’s Senior PetCare program delivers pet food to those in need

By | Featured News, LifeCare Alliance in the News, Senior PetCare

Photo and story published Mar. 5, 2021, by the Columbus Dispatch:

Despite her deep love for their pets, Natalie Joe and Michael Kennison almost had to give them up because they were having a hard time affording pet food.

Similar to Meals on Wheels, LifeCare Alliance’s Senior PetCare program regularly delivers dog and cat food to people’s front doors. To receive the monthly pet food, someone must be a client of LifeCare Alliance, which serves older adults, the medically challenged and homebound adults.

Senior PetCare volunteer Liz Alcalde has delivery routes for the program on the East and South sides. She says, “…everybody that I deliver to is really, really struggling financially, and I just really think it’s important that they are allowed to have their pet with them.”

Click here to read the full story.

Nominate a Volunteer for the LifeCare Alliance Spirit Awards!

By | Carrie's Cafe, Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Columbus Cancer Clinic, Events, Featured News, Help-at-Home, Meals-on-Wheels, POHC, Volunteers, Wellness
Thank you for nominating an outstanding volunteer for the Spirit Awards! Volunteers are essential to the success of LifeCare Alliance in our community, so it is important to recognize the wonderful work they do.
Please use the form below to submit your nomination. We want to know the LifeCare Alliance program that benefits from your nominee’s work, as well as the reasons your nominee stands out from all the rest.
Please visit LifeCare Alliance’s website and social media for information about this year’s Spirit Awards as details are finalized.

Columbus CEO: Volunteer of the Year Sandy Freer lives to serve

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

Photo by Rob Hardin. Story published Feb. 26, 2021, by Columbus CEO:

Sandy Freer, Vice President of Business Partner Relations at Quantum Health, has been chosen as the Volunteer of the Year by Columbus CEO for their 2021 Healthcare Achievement Awards.

At the heart of Quantum Health’s many efforts is LifeCare Alliance. Freer and her team began taking delivery routes in 2009 and over time increased participation to five times per week.

Freer says, “It brings me joy, and I believe part of the reason I’m here on this Earth is to be in service to other people.”

Click here to read the full story.

Campers smiling and waving

CODA Welcomes the Tom E. Dailey Foundation Inc. as a New Camp Supporter

By | Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Featured News

Above picture of Camp Hamwi campers taken prior to 2020. 

Supporters like the Tom E. Dailey Foundation Inc. help LifeCare Alliance’s Central Ohio Diabetes Association (CODA) provide Camp Hamwi for children with diabetes.

The Tom E. Dailey Foundation Inc. was established through an endowment by Tom Dailey, a senior executive in the payments industry for over 30 years. The foundation reflects the founder’s commitment to uplift Ohioans by supporting diversity, railroad heritage, parks and rec, youth, and the arts.

Since 1968, CODA’s camp programs have helped children with diabetes learn life-saving disease management skills in a safe, recreational environment. Campers have demonstrated for over 50 years that camp programming leads to an entire transformation on how they view their disease and how they approach life. Given the tools of better acceptance, self-management and knowledge of their diabetic condition, campers go on to excel in other areas of their life and strive for dreams they did not think they could accomplish before they experienced camp.

Thank you to the Tom E. Dailey Foundation Inc. for helping CODA to continue the 53-year-old tradition of Camp Hamwi!

-By Stephanie Rowe Bencic, LifeCare Alliance

Learn more

Visit LifeCare Alliance’s Central Ohio Diabetes Association camp page to learn more about CODA’s camps that empower children living with diabetes!

Project OpenHand-Columbus Logo

LifeCare Alliance, Kent Richard Hofmann Foundation Partnership Helps the Fight Against HIV/AIDS

By | Featured News, POHC

Support from funders such as the Kent Richard Hofmann Foundation enables LifeCare Alliance to provide vital nutritional assistance to clients in our Project OpenHand-Columbus program.

The Kent Richard Hofmann Foundation is a private foundation dedicated to the fight against HIV and AIDS. Kent Richard Hofmann was an architect, philanthropist and early AIDS activist in Atlanta. Since his passing in 1988, the Foundation has kept his wishes to dedicate support to organizations providing advocacy and direct care to people living with HIV/AIDS.

LifeCare Alliance’s Project OpenHand-Columbus provides nutrition services to individuals in Central Ohio living with active HIV/AIDS. The program focuses on preventing nutrient deficiencies, weight loss, wasting and malnourishment, while maximizing the effectiveness of drug therapies and medical treatment. By providing nutritious meals to people living with HIV/AIDS, LifeCare Alliance can help to protect their immune systems, keep them in their homes and prevent ill health.

With supporters like the Kent Richard Hofmann Foundation, LifeCare Alliance is able to serve our neighbors with responsive, compassionate, and quality care. Thank you for helping us Nourish the Human Spirit!

-By Stephanie Rowe Bencic, LifeCare Alliance

Learn more

Visit LifeCare Alliance’s Project OpenHand-Columbus page to learn more about the Agency’s program that fight HIV/AIDS with nutrition!

10TV: ‘It’s life or death without my insulin’: Central Ohio Man Explains the Drastic Cost of Insulin

By | Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Featured News, LifeCare Alliance in the News

Story published Feb. 2, 2021, by 10TV:

Dylan Knecht was diagnosed with Type-1 Diabetes when he was just 2 years old.

According to GoodRx, a vial of insulin, which is about 1,000 units, cost $210 in 2014, that price rose to $360 by 2018.

LifeCare Alliance, which manages the Central Ohio Diabetes Association and Diabetes Dayton, sees a lot of individuals or families who suddenly get this disease and then have to start spending 400 or more dollars a month on insulin for one person.

Click here to read the full story.

Columbus Dispatch: Soaring Insulin Prices Show How the US is Losing the Battle Against High Drug Costs

By | Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Featured News, LifeCare Alliance in the News

Photo and story published Jan. 29, 2021, by Columbus Dispatch:

According to a new bipartisan investigation, the cost of insulin has been kept artifically high.

The investigation found that drug manufacturers “aggressively” raised the list price of their leading insulin brands an average of 300% over the past decade.

Lifecare Alliance hands out supplies for diabetics but cannot provide insulin.

Click here to read the full story.

Meals-on-Wheels logo

NBC4: Volunteers Spend MLK Day of Service Delivering Meals

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

Story published Jan. 18, 2021, by NBC4:

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day has become a national day of service.

Volunteers like Dawn Smith have made volunteering on MLK Day a yearly tradition, and want to pass it on to the next generation.

LifeCare Alliance set up its own drive-thru operation for volunteers to check in and pick up meals with limited contact. Volunteers limited their direct contact with clients when they dropped off meals, but hoped the service itself was a gesture of goodwill.

Click here to read the full story.

LifeCare Alliance Administrative Building

10TV: LifeCare Alliance Replaces 30 Furnaces for Seniors in 2020

By | Featured News, Home Repairs, LifeCare Alliance in the News

Story published Jan. 12, 2021, by 10TV:

Nancy Jones lost her husband, Jack, a year ago. On top of an already tough year, she started worrying about her furnace.

It started going out, and she said she wouldn’t have been able to afford fixing it. She started calling places and got in touch with LifeCare Alliance.

LifeCare Alliance replaced furnaces for about 30 people [in 2020].

Click here to read the full story.

New Year, Same Diabetes

By | Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Featured News, It Takes a Family

Welcome to 2021! We first get to celebrate that we have been able to turn the page from 2020 and see what life can bring for us now — even though some may say it hasn’t started off much better.

While there is always joy and excitement and a sense of a fresh start, diabetes doesn’t start over. It’s there every day, whether we are willing to work with it or not.

I think that is one of the many things I wrestle with as a T1D parent: showing up on the days where even I don’t want to hassle with it. But putting on the strong face is the choice I get to make. I mean, let’s be honest — there have been a lot of things that we faced in 2020.

Personally, we started 2020 with Logan getting the flu, at the same time we were starting with the Dexcom CGM. I was so excited to get him started! But then battling the high sugars with being sick and seeing them constantly with the Dexcom, I learned very quickly what everyone warns you about…the CGM can also be too much information!

Then COVID struck, and we got to try to explain to our kids why we weren’t going to Great Wolf Lodge. There is this virus that we don’t know about and we don’t want to take any extra risks.

And who really enjoyed having to shut down your child’s requests over and over again to have friends over to play?! Logan is a social kid; he thrives on talking to people. And when I have that conversation of not feeling comfortable having his friends over because I don’t know how careful they have been…that immediately in his head says, “what, you don’t think my friends are smart?! You just don’t want me to have any fun!” One of those days I really didn’t want to show up for the diabetes. I didn’t like having that conversation. It was heart-crushing, actually.

There were a lot of heart-crushing conversations with kids this past year, diabetes or not. But to have a child in a “high risk” category just feels … extra hard.

And here’s the thing. We still did it. We are still doing it. We are still teaching our kids to face the hard days, or hard months. Because no matter how many calendar pages we get to flip into a new year, the reality is still that there are hard days with diabetes.

So how do you face the hard days? For me, I celebrate the little stuff. I am a gratitude fanatic! So much so that it really drives my family crazy. But I don’t think there is a wrong way to be grateful. So I celebrate the overnight stretches of near-perfect blood sugars. I celebrate when I calculate the carbs and extend the insulin just right for pizza night. Those things feel like hitting the lottery!

So celebrate yourself and your kids! Celebrate when things go well, so we don’t have to spend so much time worrying when they get hard.

About

Dunlap Family Picture

This blog post is PART TEN of IT TAKES A FAMILY: LIFE WITH TYPE 1, written by Lindsay Dunlap.

The Dunlap family lives with two generations of T1D, and Lindsay is graciously sharing their experience with us. If you’d like to connect with Lindsay, she’d be happy to talk about the highs and lows with you at lindsay@lindsaydunlapcoaching.com.

Learn More

Click here to learn more about the Central Ohio Diabetes Association, including support for families through programs such as Camp Hamwi.

Help-at-Home Sees Successful 2020 Adopt-a-Senior Season

By | Featured News, Help-at-Home

Gifts are prepared for delivery. LifeCare Alliance’s Help-at-Home program had a wonderfully successful Adopt-a-Senior program in 2020!

With COVID-19 injecting uncertainty into this year’s Adopt-a-Senior holiday campaign, the Agency wasn’t sure how it would go in terms of donations and volunteers. But everyone pulled together, and generosity prevailed.

Everyone in the Help-at-Home department worked hard to make this year’s campaign happen. That included creating volunteer gift delivery routes, calling clients, and even hitting the road to deliver gifts themselves. This was all done in between the normal services provided by the Help-at-Home team, and multiple members of our field staff went out of their way to deliver extra routes of gifts in addition to providing wonderful service to clients. It truly was a team effort!

At a Dec. 20 gift donation and distribution event, 24 volunteers delivered 350 gifts to over 120 seniors! Workers also wrapped more than 100 gifts. Gift donations came in from members of the community as well as Home Instead and UPS.

All in all, Help-at-Home had enough gifts for 400 clients, comprising over $9,000 in donations!

Many clients shared that these were the only gifts they were going to receive this holiday season. Many were not able to see their families due to COVID-19 concerns. Thank you to everyone who contributed to the success of this year’s campaign!

-Alli Chrzanowski, Help-at-Home director

Dispatch - Adopt a Family

Columbus Dispatch: LifeCare Alliance’s Adopt-a-Family Helps Those with Cancer Have a Merry Christmas

By | Columbus Cancer Clinic, Featured News, LifeCare Alliance in the News

Photo and story published Dec. 22, 2020, by The Columbus Dispatch:

Gracie Davis starts crying every time she sees her Christmas presents sitting by the fireplace.

The 69-year-old Far East Side resident received the gifts through the Adopt-a-Family program by LifeCare Alliance and the Columbus Cancer Clinic.

“There’s people out there that do want to help you,” Davis said. “I’ve never had anybody do anything like that for me.”

The Adopt-a-Family program started in 2006.

The program adopted 54 families this year, which equates to 254 household members, said Christin Brown, director of the Columbus Cancer Clinic.

Click here to read the full story.

Charles Wilson holds meal bag

United Way Honors LifeCare Alliance Employee with Frontline Staff Appreciation Award

By | Featured News, Meals-on-Wheels, Press Releases

LifeCare Alliance is proud to announce that longtime Meals-on-Wheels driver Charles Wilson has won a Frontline Staff Appreciation Award from the United Way of Central Ohio.

Charles has been a compassionate, accountable, and excellent employee of LifeCare Alliance for more than 30 years. In that time, he has delivered over 150,000 meals!

As a Meals-on-Wheels driver, Charles ensures that some of the most vulnerable of central Ohio’s seniors continue to receive the nutritional support and daily wellness checks they need to maintain their independence. Most of the people he serves share that their meal driver is the only person they see in a day, so Charles is a true lifeline for many.

Over the past 10 months, that lifeline has become even more critical to ensuring the safety and health of central Ohio neighbors. Charles has not only maintained his commitment to deliver daily on the front lines, but has also adapted quickly and successfully to the new realities presented by COVID-19.

During the coronavirus pandemic, Charles has been an exemplary front-line worker who genuinely cares about the people he serves.Congratulations to Charles for being honored with the Front-line Staff Appreciation Award from the United Way!

Visit the United Way of Central Ohio’s Facebook page to see all of the Frontline Staff Appreciation honorees.

LIFECARE ALLIANCE EARNS 2020 HEALTHY WORKPLACE PLATINUM AWARD

By | Featured News, Press Releases

LifeCare Alliance will be among 100 honorees to receive a Healthy Worksite Award from the Healthy Business Council of Ohio in February. LifeCare Alliance earned the organization’s Platinum Award for 2020.

The Healthy Worksite Award recognizes Ohio employers who demonstrate a commitment to employee wellness through comprehensive worksite health promotion and wellness programs. Applicants are scored on the extent their wellness programs facilitate and encourage employee health, enhance productivity and ensure a healthy work environment.

All applications were reviewed and evaluated using objective criteria. Four levels of high achievement were awarded in 2020 —Bronze, Silver, Gold and, new in 2020, Platinum. The HBCO chose to add the Platinum level of achievement in 2020 in an effort to continue to encourage program growth in employer sites throughout the state who have, in recent years, consistently received the previous maximum achievement level of Gold.

“We can all agree that 2020 was a beast of a year for employer sites so this year’s application was modified to recognize the extraordinary efforts employers were making to offer employee wellbeing in spite of it all,” explained the Healthy Worksite Award Co-Chair Annie Laurie Cadmus. “Applicants had the option to complete a ‘Pandemic Response’ section of the application to share how they adjusted their program offerings and continued to offer support to employees during a difficult year.”

Also new in the 2020 application was the addition of questions about the cancer screenings available to employees at worksites. These questions were asked as a direct response to the Ohio Department of Health’s desire to address cancer support resources available throughout the state of Ohio. Every worksite that provided positive responses to these questions will be given a special designation from the Ohio Department of Health in addition to their overall Healthy Worksite Award score. Data regarding worksite offerings in relationship to cancer screenings will be provided to the Ohio Department of Health so they can better assess statewide availability of programming.

The online award application is available to all Ohio-based worksites from mid-August through late October each year. While the 2020 application deadline has passed, Cadmus stressed that the HBCO would like to encourage all worksites, large and small, public and private, for profit and nonprofit, to consider applying for the Healthy Worksite Award in 2021.

“The Healthy Worksite Awards Committee will meet in early 2021 to compile a document with aggregate results of the 2020 award applications and to generate a PDF of the 2021 questions. Those documents will be made available in early 2021 so worksites can identify programmatic areas of improvement and prepare their 2021 application,” Cadmus stated.

The awards ceremony will be offered virtually as part of the Health Action Council’s 2021 Virtual Conference Series & Expo on February 4, 2021. The symposium features national experts on wellbeing, resilience and health reform. The public is invited to register for this event at the Health Action Council website.

The Dunlap children sitting together and smiling.

Sharing the Story of Your Family’s Diabetes Journey

By | Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Featured News, It Takes a Family

I recently got a Facebook message from an acquaintance, a parent of a student in Logan’s grade.

“Hey, is Logan diabetic? I believe I remember you sharing that he was.”

They were staring the diagnosis in the face. Their son, Logan’s age, was in the hospital and they had just received the diagnosis of type 1 diabetes. She found some comfort in remembering that they were not facing this alone. There was someone else they knew, even if just an acquaintance, that had been through this incredibly scary moment and had been able to find their way through.

You remember this moment. You remember when your child was so sick, and you didn’t know why. Then you remember when you told your child they would have to take medicine for the rest of their life. You remember the first time they told you they didn’t want to be diabetic anymore. You remember the first time you told them that taking their pump supplies with them was not anything to be embarrassed about. And if some asked or laughed about it, educate them — don’t brush it off.

Many people may feel like it’s no one’s business to know our medical journey; or that no one wants to know what is happening with the trials and tribulations of teaching your eight year old how to count carbs; or how heart-breaking it can feel to have to pull your child away from the fun of a birthday party to check his sugar and give him insulin.

But those stories will matter to someone.

According to JDRF, 64,000 people are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes each year. Someone will need to know your story. I promise you.

So how can you share your story more? Social media is probably the easiest way. Share more about the daily routines. Share about the challenges. Let people in your social media world know about your life! Social media can be used as a powerful tool for connection if we allow it to be.

Talk about it in public. Logan is a talker, so I don’t have much to worry about asking him to explain it to people who asked questions, or even people who didn’t. He was going to tell them anyway. But when Logan was first diagnosed, I was able to be a reader for his kindergarten class and I read a book about diabetes. I was able to tell the kids, at a level that made sense to them, why Logan was leaving the classroom so much, or why he didn’t eat all the snacks that they did, or even why he had extra snacks.

And finally, genuinely connect with people. In our world today, we have almost swung to the side of being afraid to talk to new people. But if you take the time to connect with people and be interested in their story, there is a good chance they will talk to you about your story. When that happens, know that you could be serving an incredible need in their life by sharing openly and honestly about your life as a T1D family.

This journey of T1D can feel incredibly lonely if we let it be. We have a tremendous community with CODA and we want others to experience this if they need it! So, continue to be open about your life as a T1D family. Continue to be of service to others who need support and encouragement. You never know when a message will pop up that reminds you that you can never share too much.

In the end, no day is perfect. But that doesn’t mean it is all a loss. How will you find gratitude and joy in your day each day and share that with your child?

About

Family photo of Dunlap family

This blog post is PART NINE of IT TAKES A FAMILY: LIFE WITH TYPE 1, written by Lindsay Dunlap.

The Dunlap family lives with two generations of T1D, and Lindsay is graciously sharing their experience with us. If you’d like to connect with Lindsay, she’d be happy to talk about the highs and lows with you at lindsay@lindsaydunlapcoaching.com.

Learn More

Click here to learn more about the Central Ohio Diabetes Association, including support for families through programs such as Camp Hamwi.

Subaru Share the Love Event Returns for 2020

By | Featured News, Meals-on-Wheels

Meals on Wheels America and LifeCare Alliance are participating in the 2020 Subaru Share the Love Event, which has helped deliver more than 2.3 million meals to seniors across the country over the past twelve years.

This partnership with Subaru of America, Inc. is vital because too many seniors are struggling to stay independent and healthy. One in four seniors lives alone in isolation and one in seven seniors might not know from where their next meal is coming. This is simply unacceptable, which is why LifeCare Alliance provides the nutritious meals, friendly visits and safety checks to the seniors of Franklin, Madison, Marion, Champaign, and Logan counties. This support keeps seniors safe, independent, and living in their own homes, where they want to be.

We’re incredibly grateful to Subaru and its retailers for supporting our organization and the seniors we serve. With that in mind, we thought you might want to learn a little bit more about the Subaru Share the Love Event.

HERE’S HOW IT WORKS

This November 19, 2020, through January 4, 2021, for every new Subaru vehicle purchased or leased, Subaru will donate $250 to the customer’s choice of participating charities.* Meals on Wheels is one of four national participating charities and has been since the inception of the event. Through this event, as a member of Meals on Wheels America, LifeCare Alliance will receive a share of the donation from Subaru vehicles sold at participating Subaru retailers.

You might not be in the market to purchase a new car, but if you are, please look into the Subaru Share the Love Event to learn more. If you’re not shopping for a new vehicle, you can still help by spreading the word to your family and friends. A few quick and easy ways to do that:

– Share this article to your social media networks!
– Share our posts about the Share the Love Event on Facebook: (www.facebook.com/lifecarealliance). You can also do this on Twitter (@lifecareallianc) or Instagram (@lifecarealliance).

And remember: this holiday season you can ensure our senior neighbors are not forgotten, when you purchase or lease a new Subaru and select Meals on Wheels as your charity of choice.

*Disclaimer: Subaru will donate $250 for every new Subaru vehicle sold or leased from November 19, 2020, through January 4, 2021, to four national charities designated by the purchaser or lessee. Pre-approved Hometown Charities may be selected for donation depending on retailer participation. For every new Subaru vehicle sold or leased during the campaign period, participating retailers will donate a minimum of $50 in total to their registered Hometown Charities. Purchasers/lessees must make their charity designations by January 15, 2021. The four national charities will receive a guaranteed minimum donation of $250,000 each. See your local Subaru retailer for details or visit subaru.com/share. All donations made by Subaru of America, Inc.

Military veteran shown on his front porch with blanket in lap

ABC6: LifeCare Alliance, Fallen 15 Volunteers Support Veterans, Families in Need for Veterans Day

By | Featured News, LifeCare Alliance in the News

Photo and story published Nov. 11, 2020, by ABC 6:

LifeCare Alliance volunteers got to work early Wednesday morning. They were determined to show appreciation to veterans on Veterans Day.

Fallen 15 pitched in as well. Fallen 15 is an organization that honors fallen service members. They also work with veterans in the community.

“So, we wanted to do what we could, in a safe, social distancing manner, where we can go out and support them and make sure the families are getting the food they need,” said Sarah Boreland, a Board Member of Fallen 15.

Click here to read the full story.

Image of Al Cathey, who is quoted in the Columbus Dispatch story

Columbus Dispatch: People with compromised immune systems feel isolated amid COVID pandemic

By | Featured News, LifeCare Alliance in the News

Photo and story published Nov. 9, 2020, by The Columbus Dispatch:

People with compromised immune systems are at a higher risk of having a severe illness from COVID-19.

“Compromised immune systems means you get COVID-19 very easily and you could end up in the hospital very easily,” said Chuck Gehring, president and CEO of LifeCare Alliance, which provides essential services to thousands of seniors and people with medical challenges or disabilities in central Ohio.

“You’ve got a compromised immune system and that’s a problem to fight off COVID-19,” Gehring said. “You’re just not as strong.”

Click here to read the full story.

Wishing you a wonderful Holiday Season

Holiday Volunteer Opportunities 2020-2021

By | Columbus Cancer Clinic, Featured News, Help-at-Home, Meals-on-Wheels

The holiday season is here, and LifeCare Alliance has multiple opportunities for you to pay it forward through donating gifts and volunteering. Our clients have felt the sting of isolation more this year than ever, and can’t wait to receive some holiday cheer! Read below to see what way of giving works best for you. Happy Holidays!

Adopt-A-Senior

Date(s) and Time(s): Nov. 1 – Dec. 13, 2020; 9am-4pm
Host Agency: LifeCare Alliance; 670 Harmon Avenue, 43223
Contact: Molly Haroz
Phone: 614-437-2861
Website: www.lifecarealliance.org
Email: mharoz@lifecarealliance.org
Families: Yes (min. age: preschool with adult)

Opportunity:  Donate gifts that will be delivered during the holidays to older adults whom receive Meals-on-Wheels or participate in our cookouts and drive-through food pickup.  You will be helping your neighbors whom may be an older adult, medically challenged, and/or home bound and receive Meals-on-Wheels. Gifts should be delivered unwrapped.  Donation ideas include calendars, puzzle books, note cards and stamps, as well as personal care items like toothpaste, deodorant, shaving cream, soap, socks, lotions, cologne and mugs. Donations of tissue paper and small gift bags are welcomed.

Adopt-A-Senior

Date(s) and Time(s): Nov. 1 – Dec. 13, 2020; 9am-4pm
Host Agency: LifeCare Alliance—Help-at-Home; 1699 W. Mound St., 43223
Contact: Alli Chrzanowski
Phone: 614-437-2814
Website: www.lifecarealliance.org
Email: achrzanowski@lifecarealliance.org
Families: Yes (min. age: preschool with adult)

Opportunity: Help older adults whom receive home care services from our Help-at-Home department celebrate the season!  Provide a local senior items off their wish list!  Wish list items may include blankets, puzzle books, mugs, as well as personal care items like toothpaste, deodorant, shaving cream, soap, socks, and lotions, or household cleaning items. All gifts can be wrapped or unwrapped and delivered to LifeCare Alliance, or you may deliver directly to the senior’s home! Donations of tissue paper and small gift bags are welcomed.

Adopt-a-Family

Date(s) and Time(s): Oct. 17 – Dec. 13, 2020;
Deliver to client homes between 12/13-12/23 or deliver to the Cancer Clinic between 12/13 – 12/21.
Host Agency: LifeCare Alliance – Columbus Cancer Clinic; 1699 W. Mound St., 43223
Contact:  Christin Brown
Phone: (614) 437-2840
Website: www.lifecarealliance.org
Email: cbrown@lifecarealliance.org
Families: Yes (min. age: preschool with adult)

Opportunity: Help Columbus Cancer Clinic clients and their families celebrate the season! Wish list items may include toys, food, clothing, household items or gift cards.  Deliver gifts for holiday gift bags to our Mound Street offices you can purchase off the Amazon Wish List:  (https://www.amazon.com/hz/wishlist/ls/3R5R5QYAFS9OF/ref=hz_ls_biz_ex).

Meals-on-Wheels Delivery

Host Agency: LifeCare Alliance; 670 Harmon Avenue, 43223
Website: www.lifecarealliance.org
Questions? Email: volunteer@lifecarealliance.org
Call: 614-444-MEAL (6325)
Families: Yes (min. age: preschool with adult)

Opportunity: Multiple opportunities to assist with Meals-On-Wheels food delivery during the holiday season.  Deliver holiday cheer and hot, nutritious meals to your neighbors who may be elderly, medically challenged or home bound and receive Meals-on-Wheels.  Routes take 1-1½ hours to deliver.  Maps and training are provided before departing on a route. New volunteers should start by submitting a volunteer application at https://www.lifecarealliance.org/volunteer/apply/.  Existing volunteers can sign up for opportunities using the below links.  If the links do not work for you, simply copy and paste them into your preferred browser.

Week Before Christmas
Date(s) and Time(s): Dec. 16 – Dec 23, 2020; Delivery takes 1-1.5 hours between 10am-1pm
To Schedule: https://lifecare.mowscheduler.com/helpwanted/2020-12-13.

Christmas Eve Meals-on-Wheels Delivery
Date(s) and Time(s): Dec. 24, 2020; Delivery takes 1-1.5 hours between 10am-1pm
To Schedule: https://lifecare.mowscheduler.com/helpwanted/2020-12-24.

Christmas Day Meals-on-Wheels Delivery
Date(s) and Time(s): Dec. 25, 2020; Delivery takes 1-1.5 hours between 10am-1pm
To Schedule: https://lifecare.mowscheduler.com/helpwanted/2020-12-25.

Week after Christmas Meals-on-Wheels Delivery
Date(s) and Time(s): Dec. 26 – Dec 30, 2020; Delivery takes 1-1.5 hours between 10am-1pm
To Schedule: https://lifecare.mowscheduler.com/helpwanted/2020-12-26.

New Year’s Eve Meals-on-Wheels Delivery
Date(s) and Time(s): Dec. 31, 2020; Delivery takes 1-1.5 hours between 10am-1pm
To Schedule: https://lifecare.mowscheduler.com/helpwanted/2020-12-31.

New Year’s Day Meals-on-Wheels Delivery
Date(s) and Time(s): Jan. 1, 2021; Delivery takes 1-1.5 hours between 10am-1pm
To Schedule:https://lifecare.mowscheduler.com/helpwanted/2021-01-0.

McAlister’s Deli Helps Warm Up Our Community

By | Featured News, Meals-on-Wheels

For the second year in a row, McAlister’s Deli has selected Meals on Wheels America as the beneficiary of its Warming Up the Community campaign.

During the month of November, McAlister’s will donate 10¢ for every bowl or cup of soup purchased, with a minimum donation of $100,000!

HOW TO PARTICIPATE

Customers can support the Warming Up the Community campaign in several ways throughout the month of November at participating locations. Third-party delivery is not included in this promotion.

  • Dine-in: Guests who choose to dine in can order and enjoy their hot cup or bowl of soup at participating locations.
  • Carry Out: McAlister’s guests have multiple options for ordering ahead of time and can easily pick up.
    • Order Via: Online at https://mcalistersdeli.olo.com/, or on our McAlister’s Deli App (available on the Apple and Google Play stores), or by phone.
    • Pick-up Via: In-store Pick-Up Stations, Pick-Up Windows and Curbside Pick-Up (varies by location).

LOCATIONS

Visit one of the two central Ohio McAlister’s Deli locations and partner with LifeCare Alliance to reduce senior hunger and isolation!

  • 1593 Hilliard-Rome Rd., Hilliard
  • 7664 Sawmil Rd., Dublin
DC Coordinators at Grab and Go

Funding from the League of Women Voters Nourishes the Human Spirit

By | Carrie's Cafe, Featured News

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, over 2 billion people do not have regular access to safe, nutritious and sufficient food.

One of the ways LifeCare Alliance helps to alleviate the challenges of access to food is through our congregate dining centers. Due to COVID-19, this program is currently offered with Grab-and-Go meals at senior residences in Franklin County and a drive-thru service at our signature dining center, Carrie’s Café. In addition to these models of meal distributions, Grab-and-Go events were established throughout the warmer weather months to enrich programming and provide education about voting procedures for the upcoming election.

Thanks to funding from the League of Women Voters, these events have been enhanced through advertising, music, desserts, games, prizes, signs, stickers, voter absentee applications, voter education flyers, and more. This helps to reach more individuals with voter education that is still safe for clients, some of who are the most vulnerable to the coronavirus.

What better way to celebrate a supporter of our nutrition programs than on World Food Day! Every year on October 16, World Food Day brings to light the concerns of food security, with this year’s theme being Grow, Nourish, Sustain, Together.  We are sincerely appreciative to funders like the League of Women Voters who help us Nourish the Human Spirit!

-By Stephanie Rowe Bencic, LifeCare Alliance

Learn more

Visit LifeCare Alliance’s Carrie’s Cafe page to learn more about the Agency’s no-cost drive-through meals for seniors!

Remember to Vote on or before November 3,2020.
Logan in a football pose

Navigating the Pendulum Between Confidence and Cockiness

By | Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Featured News, It Takes a Family

How are you building confidence in your children?

I think this is an ever-evolving question, at least for me. As parents we want our children to believe in themselves, but there is a fine line between confidence and cockiness. I am working intentionally to keep that teeter totter balanced with my kids.

Logan has always been a pretty confident kid. He will enter any group situation and can confidently join right in. He will immediately call you a friend and not even know your name But, then there is the “know-it-all” side to Logan. The pendulum has swung far on the cocky side when it comes to how he shares about video games, sports, and pretty much anything you are talking about, he will feel sure that he knows more than you if he’s seen one YouTube video on the subject. And I genuinely don’t believe he intentionally is trying to be better than anyone. He is a teacher at heart. Right now, his teaching comes across more as telling. Again, a fine line.

Then there is the confidence he has in taking command of his diabetes. Where I am so proud of him for being vocal about how he is feeling with his teachers and friends at school, I have also seen him swing towards taking advantage of the freedom to come and go to the clinic as needed and seems to be taking a few too many trips “just to check.” Thankfully, a new Dexcom helps curb that this year.

Don’t get me wrong, I want him to be sure of himself, but I have learned over the years that the best way to gain trust and credibility with people is to first listen to understand. To listen to understand requires you to ask questions. This is the learning moment I am in with Logan right now. How the best teachers are the ones who put learning first. Its not about how much you know, but how big your desire is to learn.

I heard John Maxwell speak recently (virtually of course) and he restated a message in a way that we have heard a million times: “Your talk talks. Your walk walks. But your walk talks louder than your talk talks.” While I can’t say that ten times fast, or even one time fast, it does remind me that the best way I can teach Logan — and his sister and anyone I encounter — is to walk my talk. To not just tell him what he should do, but I want to display the behavior for him. For everyone I encounter in my life, I want them to see my teaching through my actions. The only way to teach love is to be love. The old adage of “do as I say, not as I do” is no longer a viable message for sustainable change.

This is not an overnight switch to flip, and one day he is going to wake up and know exactly how to maintain the perfect balance of confident versus cocky. I’m 37 years old and I am still figuring it out. And that’s the point! The point is to be intentional. To own it when I’ve gone too far towards cocky, and to commit to do it differently the next time. To celebrate him when I see him excel with confidence and to ask questions when it comes across as cocky.

We are all just figuring it out. The world isn’t slowing down for us to teach just this one lesson. It throws in things like pandemics, and virtual school, and distrust, and elections, and wildfires and all these other opportunities to practice. And we are in the situation of having the added pressure and expectation of raising responsible children who can take command of their health and wellness in a way that sometimes seems unfair. But how we engage with our children now is helping build their future. So how are you playing a part in their confident future?

About

Logan poses on his first day of school

This blog post is PART EIGHT of IT TAKES A FAMILY: LIFE WITH TYPE 1, written by Lindsay Dunlap.

The Dunlap family lives with two generations of T1D, and Lindsay is graciously sharing their experience with us. If you’d like to connect with Lindsay, she’d be happy to talk about the highs and lows with you at lindsay@lindsaydunlapcoaching.com.

Learn More

Click here to learn more about the Central Ohio Diabetes Association, including support for families through programs such as Camp Hamwi.

Members of the Columbus Chamber of Commerce volunteer during the Rally for Recovery

Rally for Recovery Gives Meals-on-Wheels Volunteers a Boost

By | Featured News, Meals-on-Wheels, Volunteers

LifeCare Alliance received a welcome boost to its volunteer efforts during the United Way of Central Ohio’s Rally for Recovery Campaign.

During the week of Sept. 28, 2020, the UWCO awarded funds to local organizations to encourage new volunteers to complete a project that creates positive change within the community. LifeCare Alliance’s programs have been significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, so the Agency requested and was awarded a microgrant to help recruit volunteers to deliver Meals-on-Wheels.

Many of our neighbor seniors are still not able to go to the grocery store or are afraid to go out in public where they might encounter a crowd. In addition, those who normally have assistance from a family member or friend often cannot be visited during this time because of their particular vulnerability to COVID-19. As a result, since March 1, the demand for Meals-on-Wheels has increased by 65%. The Agency anticipates this need to continue, and will accept all those in need who qualify. By providing our nutritionally balanced meals to our senior and medically challenged neighbors, we will help keep them safe.

With public health concerns forcing the closure of congregate dining, senior centers, and senior daycare facilities, those who relied on these centers for their nutritional needs are turning to home-delivered meals to provide their nutrition. Many seniors and medically challenged individuals are unable to prepare and cook meals, and need a complete, ready to eat, home-delivered meal.

LifeCare Alliance used the award to purchase Speedway fuel gift cards to help defray the cost of gas during a volunteer’s Meals-on-Wheels shift. This was a great help in recruiting new volunteers as the Agency isn’t able to provide this perk to volunteers on a regular basis. The Agency is particularly appreciative of the funding from the United Way because it was able to offer a special thank you to Rally for Recovery volunteers.

As a result of this special funding and targeted recruitment, the Agency was able to attract 20 new volunteers during Rally for Recovery, including many from the Columbus Chamber of Commerce. These volunteers spent a total of 60 hours delivering 15 Meals-on-Wheels routes over the course of the Rally for Recovery week, distributing an estimated 250 meals to our senior clients! With their assistance, we were able to ensure that all routes were delivered and our seniors got the hot, nutritious meals they need.

The Agency plans to continue nurturing the relationships with these volunteers. With hope, many will be interested and available to become regular volunteers or even “adopt” a route. The Agency has the largest Adopt-A-Route program in the country (more than 100 companies participate), giving employees the opportunity to deliver Meals-on-Wheels during their lunch break. Each meal route delivered by a volunteer instead of a paid driver saves the Agency $12,000 annually.

Thanks so much to the United Way of Central Ohio for their commitment to volunteer recruitment!

-By Crystal Kurzen, Grants Manager, LifeCare Alliance

Learn more

Visit LifeCare Alliance’s Volunteer page to learn more about different ways to get involved and Nourish the Human Spirit!

Above:

Members of the Columbus Chamber of Commerce volunteering for Meals-on-Wheels during the Rally for Recovery.

LifeCare Alliance Among Grantees Receiving COVID-19 and Social Justice Support From KeyBank

By | Featured News, Press Releases

COLUMBUS, Ohio, Oct. 1, 2020 – KeyBank has announced $300,000 in KeyBank Foundation grants in the third quarter to local nonprofits across Central and Southwestern Ohio for COVID-19 relief and social justice efforts.  The funding provides $240,000 in grants for COVID-related support to local organizations serving our community’s most vulnerable populations across Key’s markets in greater Columbus, Cincinnati and Dayton. It also includes $60,000 directed toward grassroots racial equity and social justice initiatives. The grants are incremental to Key’s substantial ongoing community support to the region as directed through the bank’s five-year, $16.5 billion National Community Benefits Plan.

“KeyBank’s purpose is to help our clients and our communities thrive. That is true in good times and in challenging times,” said Corporate Responsibility Officer Stacy Thompson. “COVID-19 hasn’t revealed new issues; rather it has shown us the depths of issues we continue to work to address with our community partners, and just how much further we have to go.” Thompson went on to explain that along with committing additional funds at the beginning of the pandemic, Key shifted some of its 2020 planned philanthropic resources to meet more immediate needs.  “We realized early on that many of our community partners needed to pivot in response to the pandemic’s impact on their vulnerable populations, so we worked with them to reallocate our planned support to help them.”

Organizations receiving COVID-19 relief support from KeyBank Foundation are:

“Not only has KeyBank generously contributed financially, but they have also provided critical volunteer support by allowing associates to deliver Meals-on-Wheels as one of our Adopt-a-Route partners. Thanks to support like theirs, we continue to serve all eligible clients in need.”
-Charles W. Gehring,
President & CEO,
LifeCare Alliance

Columbus & Central Ohio

  • Columbus Foundation
  • Central Ohio United Way
  • Richland County United Way
  • YWCA Columbus
  • Columbus Urban League
  • LifeCare Alliance Meals-on-Wheels
  • Per Scholas – Columbus
  • Move to Prosper

Dayton

  • Dayton Foundation
  • United Way of Dayton
  • Wesley Community Center
  • Miami Valley Foodbank
  • Miami Valley Fair Housing Center

Cincinnati

  • Cincinnati United Way
  • YWCA Cincinnati
  • Cincinnati Youth Collaborative
  • Freestore Foodbank
  • YMCA of Greater Cincinnati

“Per Scholas Columbus appreciates the support of KeyBank as we moved to remote training as a result of COVID-19,” said Managing Director, Toni Cunningham.  “Workforce training is critical to getting our community back to work during these challenging times. KeyBank’s investment supports continuation of our high impact technology training through our remote classrooms, as well as to ensure that no learner is turned away due to lack of equipment or access to broadband services.”

LifeCare Alliance President & CEO Chuck Gehring is also grateful for KeyBank’s partnership. “Not only has KeyBank generously contributed financially, but they have also provided critical volunteer support by allowing associates to deliver Meals-on-Wheels as one of our Adopt-a-Route partners,” he said. “Thanks to support like theirs, we continue to serve all eligible clients in need.”

As a company recognized for its commitment to and advancement of diversity, equity, and inclusion practices, KeyBank reaffirms its strong stand for social justice and racial equity with social change grants in all its markets, and has committed to a comprehensive community response plan to accelerate outcomes and create meaningful and lasting advancement toward racial equity and social justice across its footprint.

Local organizations receiving grants from KeyBank Foundation to support racial equity and social justice initiatives are:

Columbus & Central Ohio

  • The Center for Employment Opportunities (C.E.O)
  • Ohio Black Expo
  • Columbus Urban League
  • UNCF Columbus

Dayton

  • YWCA Dayton
  • West Dayton Caravan (Dayton Scholars Program)
  • Neighborhoods Over Politics
  • Dayton Young Black Professionals
  • McKinley UM Church (John Moore Center)

Cincinnati

  • The Center for Employment Opportunities (C.E.O)
  • DAD Initiative
  • Urban League of Greater SW Ohio

“C.E.O. Columbus would like to extend our sincerest appreciation to our newest partner, KeyBank, for awarding us the Social Justice and Equity grant,” said Program Director Teresa Gary.  “This mission-aligned funding will help to support our local economic opportunity work, providing participants with ancillary resources to participate in gainful employment skills training that will elevate both their hiring and salary potential.  We are so grateful for partners like KeyBank who make it possible for communities of color to thrive on their journey to excellence.”

In addition to the above grants, KeyBank teammates donated more than $2 million through KeyBank Foundation’s 2:1 Response Employee Matching Gifts program, supporting COVID-19 relief and social change efforts through more than 1,200 nonprofits across the country, including many in Central and Southwestern Ohio.  KeyBank’s employees also participated in the bank’s Virtual Neighbor’s Make a Difference initiative during the months of June and July, which, due to the pandemic, replaced the bank’s traditional annual day of caring with volunteering projects with non-profits that employees completed remotely.

“I am deeply proud of KeyBank’s community spirit and the way our teammates have come together to support our clients and our community,” said KeyBank Market President Melissa Ingwersen.  “Key’s long and strong history of support has helped our customers and communities prevail through many challenging times, and together we will get through today’s challenges as well.”

About KeyBank Foundation
KeyBank Foundation serves to fulfill KeyBank’s purpose to help clients and communities thrive, and its mission is to support organizations and programs that prepare people for thriving futures.  The Foundation’s mission is advanced through three funding priorities – neighbors, education, and workforce – and through community service. To provide meaningful philanthropy that transforms lives, KeyBank Foundation listens carefully to understand the unique characteristics and needs of its communities and then backs solutions with targeted philanthropic investments. KeyBank Foundation is a nonprofit charitable foundation, funded by KeyCorp.
About KeyCorp
KeyCorp’s roots trace back 190 years to Albany, New York. Headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, Key is one of the nation’s largest bank-based financial services companies, with assets of approximately $171.2 billion at June 30, 2020.  Key provides deposit, lending, cash management, and investment services to individuals and businesses in 15 states under the name KeyBank National Association through a network of more than 1,000 branches and approximately 1,400 ATMs. Key also provides a broad range of sophisticated corporate and investment banking products, such as merger and acquisition advice, public and private debt and equity, syndications and derivatives to middle market companies in selected industries throughout the United States under the KeyBanc Capital Markets trade name. For more information, visit https://www.key.com/. KeyBank is Member FDIC.
Census sign encouraging people to complete the 2020 census.

Columbus Counts 2020 Census Grant Enhances Grab-and-Go and Drive-Thru Services at LifeCare Alliance!

By | Carrie's Cafe, Featured News
In early 2020, LifeCare Alliance received a grant from the City of Columbus—Columbus Counts 2020 to help raise awareness among our clients about the importance of filling out the Census. To use this funding, we had to radically pivot when COVID-19 struck. Since our congregate dining centers closed on March 16, 2020, and are still not open, we had to think of a different way to reach the Hard-to-Count (HTC) populations that we normally serve through in-person dining and large events.

As a result of some of the new COVID-19 protocols, it took us some time to relaunch our congregate meal program and assess how to do it safely for all parties involved. Leah Bunck, MSW, Director of Congregate Dining at LifeCare Alliance, discussed the challenges of relaunching the program: “Many of our clients do not drive, which means we had to figure out the best way to bring the meals and programming to them. Partnering with senior apartment buildings throughout Franklin County has worked very well.”

In addition, converting our signature dining center, Carrie’s Cafe, into a drive-thru has worked as a great alternative for clients that can drive. Once we realized that we could do a “Grab-and-Go” model at senior residences as well as a restaurant-style drive-thru to continue to provide meals to our seniors who had previously attended our dining center events, we knew we could still make the Census education campaign a success.

Read More

Project OpenHand-Columbus Logo

National HIV/AIDS and Aging Awareness Day

By | Featured News, POHC

Today is National HIV/AIDS and Aging Awareness Day (NHAAD), a yearly observance launched by The AIDS Institute that focuses on the challenges the aging population faces in regards to HIV/AIDS and to highlight prevention, testing, care, and treatment.

Older adults in the U.S. are more likely to have late stage HIV infection at the time of diagnosis, which means they start treatment late and possibly suffer more immune-system damage. According to the CDC, an estimated 47% of individuals in the U.S. diagnosed with HIV were aged 50 and older in 2015. Project OpenHand-Columbus (POHC) serves a critical need by providing nutritious food for individuals living with HIV/AIDS. The program began in San Francisco, was founded in Columbus in 1994, and merged with LifeCare Alliance in 2004.

LifeCare Alliance would like to bring our recent supporters of POHC to light on this day. This past year, we received assistance for POHC clients from Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS and Janssen Therapeutics, and emergency funding from the MAC Viva Glam Fund and The Legacy Fund of the Columbus Foundation. We would not be able to serve those living with HIV/AIDS without the help of the above mentioned organizations and businesses. Thank you for nourishing the human spirit!

-By Stephanie Rowe Bencic, LifeCare Alliance

Learn more

Visit Project OpenHand-Columbus’s page to learn more about POHC’s efforts to fight HIV/AIDS through nutrition!

Funders Make 2020 CODA Virtual Camp Possible

By | Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Featured News
According to the 2020 National Diabetes Statistics Report from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, nearly 1.6 million Americans have been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes (T1D) — up from 1.25 million people, or nearly 30%, from 2017.

Because of alarming statistics like these, the Central Ohio Diabetes Association (CODA) exists to help people navigate the unfamiliar waters of managing diabetes. This comes in the form of a quintessential childhood experience — summer camp.

“Lilly does not feel alone anymore,” explains mom Rebecca, who knows how important the camp experience is for her daughter with type 1 diabetes. “I cannot thank you enough for not stepping, but dive bombing into the uncomfortable unknown to make this year’s camp possible. It will help us get through this year.” Read More

Columbus CEO: LifeCare Alliance expands westward with Diabetes Dayton merger

By | Featured News, LifeCare Alliance in the News

Photo and story published Aug. 31, 2020, by Columbus CEO Magazine:

LifeCare Alliance is perhaps best known for being the Midwest’s leading provider of Meals-on-Wheels. Diabetes management, however, has become an increasing part of its caseload and care for seniors.

In August, the organization merged with Diabetes Dayton, a nonprofit that provides programs and services to help people suffering from the chronic condition.

“Diabetes Dayton, because of their size, they couldn’t take everybody that needed help,” said LifeCare Alliance President & CEO Charles W. Gehring. “At LifeCare Alliance, we take everybody. Together we’ll be bigger and stronger.”

Click here to read the full story.

A Loving Touch - Elderly couple embraces

Photo Contest Showcases Moments of Joy, Dignity for Seniors

By | Featured News

Beauty is often found in the quietest moments.

The National Council on Aging held a photo contest for its Age + Action Virtual Conference. The contest encouraged photographers from all over the country to submit photos depicting people enjoying their advanced years and awarded prizes to some of the most impactful submissions.

The photos showcased seniors in moments of joy, companionship and quiet dignity.

The winning photo was titled A Loving Touch, and featured a black and white image of an elderly interracial couple sharing a tender moment.

“The judges chose this photo because of its artistry, poignancy, sensitivity, and dignity,” said Ken Bracht, NCOA chief marketing and business development officer.

The second-place photo, titled Grandma Quality Time, showed a toddler and her grandmother sharing a chocolate milkshake. Other honorees included On the Bench, a photo of several older men sharing a laugh in the park, and One Day Like the Next, which depicted a man watching television in a cozy, cluttered living room.

You can see the NCOA’s entire gallery here.

Photo Credit: Allan Mestel

See More

Click this box to see the National Council on Aging’s full gallery.

A worker loads fans into a client's car

With Cooling Centers Closed, Fan Campaign Offers Refuge from Heat

By | Fan Campaign, Featured News, Uncategorized

The city of Columbus has decided to keep its community centers and public libraries closed amid coronavirus concerns. In a normal summer, these spaces are designated as “cooling centers,” where people without air-conditioned homes can wait out the hottest hours of the day.

People who in the past relied on cooling centers will need to find new ways to stay safe during summer heat waves.

For the past two decades, LifeCare Alliance has been committed to keeping central Ohioans cool with its “Beat the Heat” Fan Campaign, a service which provides unused box fans to people in need of assistance cooling their homes. Drive-through fan distributions are held at 670 Harmon Ave. Call the LifeCare Alliance Fan Hotline (614-437-2870) to learn when the next fan distribution is scheduled.

Fan donations can be made at any Franklin County fire station or at 670 Harmon Ave, Columbus, OH 43223.

Here are 10 tips to protect yourself and your loved ones from extreme heat:

  1. Check on neighbors and loved ones you know don’t have air conditioning, especially those who spend most of their time at home.
  2. Drink plenty of water even if you don’t feel thirsty. Avoid caffeinated drinks and alcoholic beverages.
  3. Close blinds on windows facing the sun.
  4. Never leave people or animals in enclosed vehicles.
  5. Spend time on the lowest level of your home. Basements can be a great place to wait out extreme heat.
  6. Avoid large, protein rich meals which can increase metabolic heat, eat smaller meals more often.
  7. Avoid strenuous outdoor exercise during the hottest part of the day.
  8. Keep buckets or basins filled with cool water to soak your feet in, take cold showers and baths and use towels soaked in cold water to keep cool.
  9. Avoid sunburn, as it makes it more difficult for your body to dissipate heat.
  10. Make sure pets have adequate access to water and shade. Before giving your pet exercise on a paved surface, check with your palm to see if the pavement is too hot for their sensitive paws.
Woman walking dogs

Healthy Habits Can Help Ward Off Alzheimer’s

By | Featured News

A recent study funded by the National Institute on Aging identified five healthy habits which together can drastically reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s. The study done on 3,000 aging Americans found that people who practice at least four of these five habits are 60 percent less likely to contract Alzheimer’s than people who practice one habit or less.

Researchers looked for these healthy lifestyle factors among subjects of the study:

  • Exercising 150 minutes a week: Among the benefits of staying active are improved disease management, mood, and strength. Exercising is even known to help with balance, helping to prevent falls and fractures.
  • Light-to-moderate alcohol use: Alcoholism can be particularly dangerous for elderly people. In addition to increasing the risk of Alzheimer’s, heavy alcohol use makes older people vulnerable to liver problems, high blood pressure, and heart disease.
  • Being a non-smoker: Alzheimer’s has been linked to vascular issues which can be caused by tobacco use. Smoking can also cause oxidative stress linked to the onset of Alzheimer’s.
  • Eating a high-quality diet: The NIA recommends the MIND diet, a combination of the Mediterranean and DASH diets. The MIND diet is built on foods which decrease the loss of brain function caused by aging. Staples of the MIND Diet include berries, leafy greens and fish.
  • Doing intellectually engaging activities: Reading books, playing games and making crafts are a few examples of activities that can decrease older people’s risk of Alzheimer’s.

“This population-based study helps paint the picture of how multiple factors are likely playing parts in Alzheimer’s disease risk,” said Dallas Anderson, Ph.D., program director in the Division of Neuroscience at NIA. “It’s not a clear cause-and-effect result, but a strong finding because of the dual data sets and combination of modifiable lifestyle factors that appear to lead to risk reduction.”

The NIA is funding over 230 clinical trials on Alzheimer’s and other related dementias, including 111 non-pharmaceutical trials focused on finding dementia interventions related to sleep, exercise, diet and more. Those interested in participating in an NIA funded study can find more information here.

Photo credit: Pixabay.com

Attitude of Gratitude

By | Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Featured News, It Takes a Family

I have had this article on my mind for a while, and I just never put myself in front of the computer to write it. Then I got to see virtual Camp Hamwi in action, and I felt like the timing couldn’t be better.

So, let’s talk about how we practice gratitude!

Gratitude plays a huge part in my life. I have a gratitude journal that I have kept for close to two years, and I practice it daily. No matter how big or small, there will always be something to be grateful for every day.

When you have a child who is managing diabetes, it can be difficult sometimes to see those grateful moments. It is challenging to watch them get poked and prodded. It is heartbreaking to hear them say they wish they weren’t diabetic anymore. It is a test as a parent to have to tell them to come sit down and get their sugar up, instead of playing with their friends.

But what you see, expands. So, when you focus on the moments of gratitude, it just invites more moments to be grateful for!

I like to exercise my gratitude journal on our porch, where I can drink my coffee in the morning and start my days in a mindset thinking of good things to come! One weekend, Logan asked if he could join me. Of course, I said yes, because, MELT MY HEART, a quiet time to spend with my son sharing what we are grateful for…I’m all in!

On that Saturday morning, I shared my gratitude journal with him. I asked him to list three things he was grateful for. His list: family, friends, video games. Do you know how excited I was that video games were THIRD on the list?! That is a miracle! Then we sat for a few minutes enjoying the peace and quiet of the morning before he was done, and we moved on with the day. I LOVED THAT MORNING <3

Now I see SO much more to be grateful for with virtual camp! This has been an amazing two weeks for me as a parent to get a glimpse of how these children interact when they have the stigma of being “the kids with diabetes” pushed aside. I have learned so much. And I have such a list of people I am grateful for:

I am grateful for counselors who have the patience of saints! Logan talks a lot, and about randomly weird things. His counselors have been so patient and respectful of what is on his mind and the randomness that are his thoughts.

I am grateful for directors and CODA staffers who have worked COUNTLESS hours putting this camp together in very short time! They have put their hearts and souls into these two weeks, and it shows.

I am grateful for YOU, the other diabetes families who have adjusted your schedules and lives for two weeks for camp to be able to have your camper participate! I see so much engagement and fun being had! I t could not be done without some changes and sacrifices from families.

In the end, no day is perfect. But that doesn’t mean it is all a loss. How will you find gratitude and joy in your day each day and share that with your child?

About

Son's gratitude list of family, friends, and video games.

This blog post is PART SEVEN of IT TAKES A FAMILY: LIFE WITH TYPE 1, written by Lindsay Dunlap.

The Dunlap family lives with two generations of T1D, and Lindsay is graciously sharing their experience with us. If you’d like to connect with Lindsay, she’d be happy to talk about the highs and lows with you at lindsay@lindsaydunlapcoaching.com.

Learn More

Click here to learn more about the Central Ohio Diabetes Association, including support for families through programs such as Camp Hamwi.

A caregiver comforts her patient.

Pandemic Deals Additional Challenges to Caregivers

By | Featured News, Help-at-Home, Meals-on-Wheels

Taking care of aging loved ones can be challenging enough on its own, but taking care of them during a global pandemic? The past few months have left many volunteer caregivers looking for answers.

Here are a few tips to help you safely take care of your loved ones in the age of COVID-19:

Stay Informed

Follow the most recently updated guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and local public health organizations like Columbus Public Health.

Minimize Risk of Exposure

People over the age of 65 make up eight out of 10 COVID-19 deaths, so when caring for elderly loved ones it’s imperative that you take every precaution to keep yourself free from exposure. This can include limiting trips into the community, frequent handwashing, wearing masks, face coverings and gloves when necessary, and cleaning and disinfecting your home.

Manage Supplies

Acquire extra necessary medications and be sure to stock up on over-the-counter medications as well as common supplies like tissues and cough syrup. Keep your household well stocked with food to limit unnecessary trips to the grocery store. Monitor needed medical supplies related to your loved one’s condition or treatments.

Make Telehealth Appointments

If a wellness appointment for you or a loved one can be completed over the phone, telehealth appointments are your safest option. You can make telehealth appointments with LifeCare Alliance Wellness Center staff by calling 614-437-2878.

Report All COVID Symptoms

If you or your loved one are exhibiting any COVID-19 symptoms, call your primary healthcare provider. If you don’t have a primary healthcare provider, call the Ohio Department of Health COVID-19 Hotline at 1-833-427-5634. In addition to other physical symptoms, people with dementia who contract COVID-19 can see increased confusion, increased agitation and sudden bouts of sadness.

Fight Boredom and Care for Yourself

Self-isolation can be a very difficult time for both you and the person you’re caring for. To fight boredom, try and schedule regular phone and video calls with other family members. Take breaks from reading, watching and listening to the news and make sure you each find time to do things you enjoy. You can also seek out a local caregiver support group like the Central Ohio Area Agency on Aging to help you work through any feelings of stress or frustration.

Get Help if You Need It

If taking care of an aging or disabled loved one is too much at this time, LifeCare Alliance’s Help-at-Home program provides affordable, quality in-home care for people in Franklin and Madison counties. For more information call (614) 278-3130.

We Couldn’t Have Done It Without You: A Sincere Thank You to Our Emergency Funders

By | Featured News, Meals-on-Wheels
Note from a Meals on WHeels client

A note from a Meals-on-Wheels client illustrates the impact of LifeCare Alliance’s services during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Over the past four months since COVID-19 has taken hold, LifeCare Alliance has had to significantly alter its services to meet the changing needs within the community.

During the week of March 1-7, the Agency’s Meals-on-Wheels program served 15,439 meals through our Meals-on-Wheels program. In contrast, during the week of June 21-27, the Agency served 24,537 meals. LifeCare Alliance has experienced as much as a 65 percent increase in meals served, resulting from heightened client demand in all of the five counties we serve: Franklin, Madison, Champaign, Logan, and Marion. At the height of the pandemic, the Agency added as many as 500 new clients a day!

Most meal service starts within 24 hours of receiving the contact or referral. LifeCare Alliance continues to receive numerous requests for services daily, and the Agency accepts all those who qualify.

LifeCare Alliance didn’t meet this demand on our own, however; we have been incredibly fortunate to receive emergency-response funding from a number of generous corporate and community partners.

We would like to sincerely thank the following funders who have so generously partnered with us to keep our doors open during this unprecedented time of COVID-19:

  • American Electric Power Foundation
  • Battelle
  • Big Lots Foundation
  • City of Columbus
  • City of Columbus Recreation & Parks CARES Fund
  • Columbia Gas/NiSource
  • The Columbus Foundation
  • Columbus Jewish Foundation
  • Crane Group
  • CVS Health Foundation
  • Delta Dental Foundation
  • Fishel Foundation
  • Franklin County Emergency Food and Shelter Program & CARES Funding
  • Logan County Emergency Food and Shelter Program
  • Madison County Emergency Food and Shelter Program & CARES Funding
  • First Merchants Bank
  • Franklin County Commissioners
  • Grange Insurance
  • Honda of America Foundation
  • Huntington Foundation
  • George J. Igel & Co. Inc.
  • IGS Foundation
  • Kokosing
  • The Legacy Fund
  • MAC AIDS Viva Glam Fund
  • Marion Rotary Foundation
  • Meals on Wheels America
  • Nationwide Foundation
  • Osteopathic Heritage Foundation
  • Quantum Health
  • United Way of Central Ohio
  • United Way of Logan County
  • United Way of North Central Ohio

And this is not even to mention the number of clients who contributed under difficult circumstances. LifeCare Alliance thanks all who helped continue the vision of the Agency’s founder, to “take care of those no one else pays any attention to.”

These funders have allowed the Agency to continue to serve the most vulnerable among us in a variety of ways. In addition to access to nourishing food, clients receive health and nutrition education and linkages to community resources and other LifeCare Alliance programs. Examples include the Senior PetCare program, which delivers pet food to the homes of clients, and the Beat the Heat Fan Campaign, which provides box fans during the hot summer months. The Agency advocates for client needs in the community and through relationships with local elected officials, promotes services through marketing and community outreach, and enriches community engagement by increasing and strengthening volunteer engagement.

With the emergency funds received, LifeCare Alliance also has been able to resume essential services that were initially closed as the pandemic ramped up.

  • The annual Beat the Heat Fan Campaign is underway, and the Agency is accepting fans to distribute weekly to clients in need.
  • The Central Ohio Diabetes Association will host summer camps virtually this year, from July 12-26.
  • The Columbus Cancer Clinic restarted regular mammograms as of May 18 and continues to be fully scheduled. The Groceries-to-Go Food Pantry, which serves CCC clients and their families, experienced a 53 percent increase in service numbers.
  • LA Catering has developed several “take out” options and new methods of delivering safe catering. Catering staff is taking reservations and can help with reopening needs.
  • Meals-for-Kids, a social enterprise, is now serving 22 daycare sites, representing more than 500 meals served per day. If all goes well, the Agency hopes to return to 60+ sites and more than 2,100 meals per day in the fall.
  • Project OpenHand-Columbus serves clients who are fighting HIV/AIDS. Many clients are self-isolating during this pandemic — some losing work because of it. COVID-19 has caused the emergency meal service to be needed at an increased rate. The number of clients served has doubled.
  • Senior PetCare continues to distribute food to almost 1,000 clients and provide veterinary care to pets in need.
  • Wellness has restarted several services, including staffing by registered nurses and registered dietitians at  community wellness centers across Franklin County.

In light of the increased client demand, the most remarkable achievement the Agency has accomplished is continuing to accept all clients in need, without a waiting list. This contrasts with a recent survey by Meals on Wheels America, which reports that 55 percent of programs nationally have increased their wait lists, with average increases of 26 percent. About 22 percent of programs’ wait lists have doubled, or more.

LifeCare Alliance is proud to be in this position, in large part because of the support of the partners mentioned above. LifeCare Alliance has received tremendous community support for emergency funding, but the Agency has not seen meal number increases slowing down. Clients will be the last group able to leave their homes as the pandemic subsides, so LifeCare Alliance anticipates this need will continue for the foreseeable future.

The Agency sincerely thanks the emergency funders for Nourishing the Human Spirit by going above and beyond to support LifeCare Alliance during this challenging time!

— By Crystal Kurzen, LifeCare Alliance

Teenagers Provide Comfort To Seniors In Isolation With Joy4All Project

By | Featured News

When COVID-19 sent the world into isolation, a group of high school students from Calgary, Canada, developed a service to help brighten the lives of lonely seniors.

The Joy4All Project is a youth-led project that allows people to call a hotline (1-877-JOY-4ALL) to hear pre-recorded messages of positivity. Callers have the choice of listening to stories, jokes, poetry, and other kind messages from the voices of children and young people. Project coordinator Katie Mahon told CNN in April that the hotline received more than 1,800 calls before it had finished its first week.

“Our goal is to keep everyone engaged and happy during these tough times, especially the people who are helping the cause by self-isolating,” reads the organization’s website. “We thank them for making this sacrifice for us, and want to help them get through this time by giving them happiness and a sense of belonging.”

The Joy4All Project crowd-sources its messages and encourages creativity and supportive language in its submissions.  The project also manages Twitter and Instagram accounts that post positive messages, jokes and content from other Calgary social programs.

LifeCare Alliance understands how isolated some members of our community can be. Even before the pandemic, senior isolation has been a public health issue. For many LifeCare Alliance clients, the Meals-on-Wheels driver may be the only face-to-face interaction they have with a person on a typical day. Volunteers are essential for combatting senior isolation because the smile and kind words they provide are valued and appreciated.

July 11, 2020, is National Cheer Up the Lonely Day. For anyone in need, the Joy4All Project may offer a spark of happiness.

AARP Advises Seniors on COVID-19 Safety

By | Featured News

A recent panel discussion by the AARP covered a topic on the minds of many in response to the coronavirus pandemic: How Americans can stay safe while also being socially engaged and connected to loved ones.

The virtual discussion, titled “Coronavirus: Personal Resilience in the New Normal,” was AARP’s 12th Coronavirus Tele-Town Hall since March 10. The panel covered topics such as the safety of hugging loved ones, actions older Americans can take to support protesters, and ways to practice self-care during this stressful time. Here are a few key takeaways:

  • At-risk people should complete health appointments over the phone if possible. Doctors should only be making in person appointments with those individuals if it’s essential for them to perform a physical exam.
  • Doctors do not recommend physical touch with loved ones from other households at this time.
  • If you do plan to meet with loved ones from other households, do so in an open outdoor space.
  • Advocate for your loved ones in nursing homes. If you suspect that a loved one is being mistreated by nursing home staff you can contact with a long-term care ombudsman. If you live in Ohio, you can reach out to them here.
  • At-risk people should refrain from protesting and instead should seek to support protesters who represent their interests by donating, calling elected officials, and registering to vote. 
  • Caregiers need to make space in their life for humor, rest and relaxation. Taking care of an at-risk loved one is more taxing than ever, and it is essential to consider your own mental health during the process.

Learn More

If you’d like to watch a recording or read the full transcript of the Tele-Town Hall click here.
Elmer, LifeCare Alliance client, shown at home in his chair.

Grab bars, new step make WWII veteran’s home a safer place

By | Featured News, Home Repairs, Meals-on-Wheels

LifeCare Alliance, with the help of a grant from Meals on Wheels America and Team Depot, made improvements in the home of a Navy veteran to help him move safely around his home.

Elmer served in World War II between 1945-1947, and is classified as an atomic veteran. During his service, his ship and shipmates would be near the atomic bomb testing areas for either testing or cleanup for the atomic bomb. At age 92, some simple home improvements were needed to ensure Elmer could remain independent in his home.

He came to LifeCare Alliance through a partnership with Focus Hillard, inside the Norwich Township Fire Department. Focus Hillard teams up with Doctors West hospital to link area residents with community resources and improve their quality of life. After speaking to Elmer’s daughter, Focus Hillard realized that in order for Elmer to able to get around his home safely, he would need grab bars and other improvements. That’s’ when Focus Hillard contacted LifeCare Alliance to seek assistance for the family.

LifeCare Alliance installed a number of grab bars around the home and inside the garage entranceway. A new step was built at the entrance of his garage, as well. According to his daughter, this has given Elmer a sense of safety and comfort moving around the home.

“Showering is not as difficult now, and we have a small ramp located in the kitchen area that leads down to the dining area,” she said. “LifeCare Alliance was able to come in and install a grab bar along the counter area where the ramp is located, and now he using that to steady himself going up and down the ramp.”

Elmer’s daughter expressed her gratitude for the help her father received.

“We would like to thank Focus Hilliard, LifeCare Alliance and the Home Depot Foundation for not only providing the repairs needed but also having such a great program and partnership to serve the veterans of this community.”

Before:

View of entrance before improvements

After:

View of entrance after step and grab bar installed

L.A. Catering Resumes Events, With COVID-19 Precautions

By | Featured News, LA Catering

L.A. Catering — whose proceeds directly benefit LifeCare Alliance’s programs and services — has made its return to catered events with a detailed health and safety plan in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

L.A. Catering’s protocols have been guided by advice from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the United States Department of Agriculture, and state and local health departments.  The Ohio Department of Agriculture inspects L.A Catering’s kitchens daily.

Here are the precautions L.A. Catering is taking:

Staff

  • Daily symptom assessments for all associates.
  • Requiring all staff to adhere to sick leave policies, staying home when they do not feel well.
  • Requiring staff to be fever-free for 24 hours before returning to work.
  • Face masks or coverings must be worn by staff in 100% compliance with all Ohio Department of Health guidelines.
  • Maintaining strict handwashing guidelines.

Drop-Off Orders

  • Delivery staff must complete ServeSafe Delivery: COVID-19 Precaution training.
  • All equipment will be cleaned and disinfected after every use.
  • Contact-free delivery is available.
  • Hand sanitizing products will be available in all delivery vehicles.

L.A. Catering Events Center

  • All tables will have a minimum of six feet between them.
  • A list of COVID-19 symptoms will be displayed at the building’s entrance; guests who are symptomatic will be asked not to enter.
  • Hand sanitizing stations will be provided in high-contact areas.
  • All high-touch areas will be cleaned a minimum of every two hours.
  • Gatherings will be limited to a maximum of 300 guests.

Off-Site Events

  • All tables will have a minimum of six feet between them.
  • L.A Catering will comply with the venue’s COVID-19 protocols and procedures.
  • All equipment will be cleaned and disinfected after every use.
  • Hand sanitizing stations will be provided in high-contact areas.
  • Gatherings will be limited to a maximum of 300 guests.

For more information about COVID-19 in Columbus visit the Columbus Public Health Coronavirus Portal.

Learn More

To learn more about L.A. Catering and begin planning your event, visit www.la-catering.com.

Alternate Entrance to the Columbus Cancer Clinic

New Safety Procedures at LifeCare Alliance Wellness Centers, Columbus Cancer Clinic

By | Columbus Cancer Clinic, Featured News, Wellness

ABOVE: An alternate entrance for the Columbus Cancer Clinic helps patients avoid unnecessary potential exposure at LifeCare Alliance’s West Mound Street building.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, LifeCare Alliance’s Columbus Cancer Clinic and Wellness Department are taking every precaution to ensure that clients receive care in the safest way possible for patients and staff.

Here’s what patients should expect:

Columbus Cancer Clinic

When Columbus Cancer Clinic patients arrive, they’re greeted with a temperature check, verbal health screenings, and Plexiglas between them and the clinic’s front desk. Other precautions the CCC is taking include:

  • Spacing out clinic appointments from every 15 minutes to every 30 minutes.
  • Providing hand sanitizer stations, encouraging social distancing and frequent hand washing.
  • Requiring all patients and staff to wear face masks or face coverings.
  • Limiting visitors to one guest per patient

CCC Home Care Support has also put wig, bra, and prosthetic fittings on hold.

Patients who are experiencing signs of COVID-19 exposure such as coughing, fever, sore throat, and breathing difficulties have been asked to reschedule their appointments and report their symptoms to their primary healthcare provider. Patients experiencing these symptoms who don’t have a primary healthcare provider are asked to call the Ohio Department of Health COVID-19 Hotline at 1-833-427-5634.

Wellness Department

LifeCare Alliance’s Community Wellness Centers, travel clinics, and registered dietitians are conducting health screenings over the phone the day before appointments. LifeCare Alliance staff will ask patients about their health, the health of others in their household, and their recent domestic and international travel.

Patients who have been recently sick or share a household with someone who’s been recently sick will be asked to either make a telehealth appointment or reschedule their in-person appointment for a later date.

All patients and staff will wear face masks and eye coverings such as shields, goggles, and glasses during Wellness Center appointments. Registered dietitian and travel clinic appointments will require face coverings to be worn at all times.

Face-to-face dietitian meetings will be limited to LifeCare Alliance’s West Mound Street location anytime Franklin County sees an uptick in COVID-19 cases.

On June 11, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced that COVID-19 tests are available to anyone who wants one, even if they are asymptomatic. To learn more about COVID-19 testing in Columbus, visit the Columbus Public Health Coronavirus Portal.

Contact Us

If you have questions or concerns about your upcoming appointment, call our Customer Service Department at 614-278-3130 or click on this box to access our contact form.

Other Siblings and the Fear of the Unknown

By | Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Featured News, It Takes a Family

I want to take a few minutes and talk about siblings. Many of us may have more than one child, and the dynamic of siblings on a normal basis is interesting to say the least. But when you throw in them having a sibling that sometimes gets “special treatment” because of them being diabetic, it adds another layer.

Logan is our oldest, 8, and is Type 1 diabetic. Then we have Addison, who is 5 going on 25! Addison will probably never remember life before Logan was diabetic. She has seen a LOT in her short, almost 6, years! She was only 5-months old when her daddy lost his leg in a farm accident, and now she is seeing her daddy and big brother live with diabetes. She is destined to do SOMETHING in the medical field! If we’re lucky, it’s going to be finding a cure <3.

She has always been my helper when it comes to the medical care. Whether it was helping hold bandages when I was doing wound care for Andrew, being the bossiest little nurse when it comes to Logan getting his sugar checked and taking his insulin, or now keeping track of his Dexcom!

So, what I wasn’t prepared for was when the fear started to creep in for Andrew that she might be diabetic (because he felt like she was drinking too much water, and visiting the bathroom a little too much).

I expected the fear from Andrew. He has almost been waiting for it. But, I wasn’t expecting MY fear. I was finding myself hesitating to agree to check her sugar. I noticed myself trying to convince myself that he was crazy. And when I sat with it and explored why, it was because of fear. And, not necessarily the fear of her being diabetic. It was the fear of Andrew having to sit with it. I didn’t want him to blame himself again.

So I decided one Saturday morning, when he was at the farm, to tell her we were going to check her sugar.

More fear I was not expecting.

She has watched daddy and Logan check their sugar since before she can remember. But when it was her turn, it was a different story.

It turned into about an hour-long conversation/crying/screaming ordeal. Tears on both sides. It only ended because I had engaged the lancet and didn’t tell her. When she finally took it, she pushed the button before I could tell her. Oh, she was NOT a fan. But, we did it! We checked her sugar, and it was normal. All of that fear and anxiety of the UNKNOWN created such a stress in my life for weeks that could have been avoided. Not the hour-long ordeal probably, but everything else…yes.

So, I’m curious. How do you handle siblings? Is there a question mark in your mind? Is there something you do special with them so they don’t get lost in the shuffle? Do they play a part in managing their sibling’s diabetes?

There is NO right or wrong answer on this one. Each and every one of us will have a different way that works for our family. And if you feel like its not working, trying something else! We are all here to learn and these kids of ours are usually the best teachers.

About

Family photo of Dunlap family

This blog post is PART SIX of IT TAKES A FAMILY: LIFE WITH TYPE 1, written by Lindsay Dunlap.

The Dunlap family lives with two generations of T1D, and Lindsay is graciously sharing their experience with us. If you’d like to connect with Lindsay, she’d be happy to talk about the highs and lows with you at lindsay@lindsaydunlapcoaching.com.

Learn More

Click here to learn more about the Central Ohio Diabetes Association, including support for families through programs such as Camp Hamwi.

Bicycle Training or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Struggle

By | Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Featured News, It Takes a Family

I am going to give an example of my bad parenting. Logan is 8 and still doesn’t know how to ride a bike. I am the worst parent in the world, I know.

I can give you all the reasons/excuses as to why, like when he was three his daddy got in a really bad farm accident and lost his leg. For the next few years my attention was focused on those daily battles of infections, surgeries, an infant (his little sister, Addison) and just balancing life. I could also tell you that our gravel driveway was hard for him to pedal, and the yard was worse.

No matter the reasons, the current reality is that Logan is an 8-year-old who doesn’t know how to ride a bike.

Now that we have more flat space and more time (because we have nothing but time now!), I really want him to learn.

He got a bike for Christmas and we tried a few weeks ago. Some would see it as an epic failure. I just learned that as a big kid, I needed more than just my arms to hold him up on his bike! So, the Easter Bunny brought training wheels.

Off we went again on Easter Sunday to ride bikes.

I have learned so much in this experience! I learned that my husband and I have two very different teaching methods. I recognize that this is going to be a process and we need to start with learning to fall. Andrew says, “he’s 8, he should know how to do it — just go do it.”

But we also now have an 8-year-old who doesn’t want to fall. He doesn’t want to do it scared. He wants it to be just as easy as it is in the video games where you can ride off the jump, break into thousands of pieces and just pop right up again without feeling any pain.

So, this bike riding lesson turned into a lesson about recognizing in life there are going to be things that are hard. There are going to times when you don’t want to do something and it’s going to hurt, and you’re going to want to go home and forget about it. But you still have to do it. Like diabetes. It is going to be hard. It is going to be painful. There is no way that we as parents can take that away from our children. So, we have to stop putting that expectation on ourselves to “make it better” for them.

There is a principle I learned that strikes home in almost every facet of life:

Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.

There will be hard times. There will be times where you want to give up. But don’t live in there. Don’t feel sorry for yourself or your child for those moments. Create out of them the strength that failure only exists if you stop trying. So, don’t ever stop trying.

About

Family photo of Dunlap family

This blog post is PART FIVE of IT TAKES A FAMILY: LIFE WITH TYPE 1, written by Lindsay Dunlap.

The Dunlap family lives with two generations of T1D, and Lindsay is graciously sharing their experience with us. If you’d like to connect with Lindsay, she’d be happy to talk about the highs and lows with you at lindsay@lindsaydunlapcoaching.com.

Learn More

Click here to learn more about the Central Ohio Diabetes Association, including support for families through programs such as Camp Hamwi.

Happy Oncology Nurses Month!

By | Featured News

May is Oncology Nurses Month!

Let’s hear it for the nurses whose dedication and endless empathy help cancer patients through the toughest of times. Oncology nurses are on the frontlines of guiding each patient through the nuances of their needs and care. They often develop deep relationships with people as they navigate their cancer journey. Oncology nurses help patients and families make the most out of their situation, and give us all a perspective of what is important in life.

LifeCare Alliance is thrilled to honor our oncology nurses at and connected to the Columbus Cancer Clinic. They help break down barriers to care for at-risk populations in our community. Not only are they excellent at what they do, but they bring a level of compassion that resonates throughout the Agency.

Thank you for all that you to support cancer patients in need. Happy Oncology Nurses Month!

Get help now

Are you or someone you love in need of LifeCare Alliance’s services? You can get the process started right now with our online referral system. Click here to begin.

Make Your Mark during Older Americans Month

#MakeYourMark during Older Americans Month

By | Featured News

For many years, May has been the month to honor the older Americans in our community and give voice to the issues they face. But unlike past Older Americans Months, this is one where everyone is experiencing a taste of what many older Americans face every single day.

Home isolation, lack of access to common food and supplies, and not being able to visit loved ones are just a few of the setbacks that we all have had to face due to COVID-19. Fortunately for most of us, living with these precautions is a temporary phase of life, no matter how long it seems.

Nevertheless, imagine if you could never go back to life before the coronavirus. Imagine you weren’t able to get around as well as you once could, and felt forgotten. That is what many of LifeCare Alliance’s older-adult clients experienced before the pandemic, and it is how they are going to live after it is over. In many ways, their lives have gotten harder since precautions have taken place.

Older Americans are among the most vulnerable populations that can have devastating effects if they contract the coronavirus. The social distancing requirements have been challenging for clients, volunteers, and LifeCare Alliance staff because the normal interactions that happen from meal deliveries to wellness checks and homemaking visits can’t happen like they did before. For some of our clients, the interaction they have with a Meals-on-Wheels driver or home health aide might be the only interaction with another person that day.

Despite these realities, LifeCare Alliance has received many notes of gratitude from our older adult clients thanking the staff, supporters, and volunteers for continuing to serve them during the pandemic. With all of the fear and uncertainty running rampant, these notes and other exchanges have inspired LifeCare Alliance to join the call in encouraging older adults to #MakeYourMark during the month of May.

If you are the relative or neighbor of an older adult, LifeCare Alliance asks you to reach out to them to help them make their mark. Older Americans, how can you make your mark? It can be as simple as writing a letter to a friend or relative and tell them what you love about them, or be as involved as sharing a favorite book, poem, or passage to a loved one by video chat or phone. You could try posting stories on social media, or collecting your thoughts and memories in a journal that you can share at a later time. Maybe set up a time with a neighbor to have a chat over the fence or at least from six feet apart.

No matter how you choose to #MakeYourMark this Older Americans Month, please know that LifeCare Alliance is here to honor, serve, and help you through this time and beyond. Here’s to making this May one of the most memorable Older Americans Months ever! #OAM2020

A heartfelt thank-you note from a LifeCare Alliance Meals-on-Wheels client.

Get help now

Are you or someone you love in need of LifeCare Alliance’s services? You can get the process started right now with our online referral system. Click here to begin.

All Sides with Ann Fisher

LifeCare Alliance President & CEO Chuck Gehring discusses COVID-19 response with “All Sides with Ann Fisher”

By | Featured News, LifeCare Alliance in the News

LifeCare Alliance President & CEO Chuck Gehring was a guest on WOSU Public Media’s All Sides with Ann Fisher this week to discuss the Agency’s activities amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Here are highlights from his interview (begins at 14:00 time stamp):

  • LifeCare Alliance’s Meals-on-Wheels program has seen a 53% increase in clients – or about 2,300 new clients – as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. We are still accepting all who qualify, and we continue to offer our services without a waiting list. (If you or someone you know is in need of our services, click here to complete a referral application.)
  • LifeCare Alliance’s new home-delivery clients may be people affected by temporarily closed Senior Dining Centers, or those who may have temporarily lost access to family support because of quarantine and stay-at-home orders. Some new clients receive a weekly drop of frozen meals.
  • Daily check-ins are a critical part of the Meals-on-Wheels program. Five people were found in distress during the first week of the stay-at-home order. They were able to get help because of the volunteer or staff member who visited to deliver a meal.
  • The Agency has seen more than 1,200 new volunteer sign-ups in response to the increased need. Some new volunteers are people working from home or college students who are home from campus – people who temporarily have more flexibility in their schedules to volunteer.
  • LifeCare Alliance asks new volunteers to stay involved if they can, as many prepare to return to their workplaces. (Volunteers who have attended an orientation class can sign up for routes using our Meal Scheduler tool. First-time volunteers can get started by filling out an application online.) Volunteers may want to check with their employers if they would support their volunteer efforts or Adopt-a-Route.
  • A variety of volunteer opportunities are available, such as pantry drop-offs for our Groceries-to-Go clients and pet food deliveries with our Senior PetCare program.
  • LifeCare Alliance’s Meals-on-Wheels menu includes new items such as omelets, waffle sticks with blueberry compote, and popcorn chicken. Menus can be customized and options such as kosher, vegetarian, and pureed are offered. Our dietitians can work with your doctor to choose a meal plan if you wish.
  • The central Ohio community has always been generous, and that has been apparent during the coronavirus pandemic. Emergency funds and other corporate donations have been appreciated as LifeCare Alliance serves a growing number of people in our community.
  • We encourage all volunteers to be safe, with prevention practices such as wearing masks and observing social distancing.

Click here to listen to the interview!

This segment is part of a Wellness Wednesday episode on All Sides with Ann Fisher. To go directly to Chuck’s interview, skip to 14:00.

Ramp Installed at Home

UPDATE: Home Repairs, New Ramp Improve Accessibility for Veteran Couple

By | Featured News, Help-at-Home

Bob and Linda are strong community advocates in Columbus’ South Side Parsons Area Commission.

The married couple’s neighborhood pride pushes them to clean up crime and property damage in their community. But as issues with the roof and porch on their own home worsened, Bob and Linda needed some help. Their roof was damaged and part of their porch was sinking.

Bob served in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War. Over the years, he and his wife have dealt with several medical issues. He is one of many veterans that LifeCare Alliance is assisting through the Helping Hometown Heroes grant provided by Home Depot and Meals on Wheels America.

“We were in dire need of help and they came to our rescue to help us out,” Linda said. “And now our roof is fixed along with our porch. We just thank you from the bottom of our heart!!”

Bob shared his story with us:

I served in the Army from 1968-1971, doing one term in Vietnam.

When I got out of the service we got the house, and after some years we starting having a lot of issues with the house. We got a hold of LifeCare Alliance through a community meeting we were attending when Maurice talked about the program. LifeCare saved my rear end by coming out and fixing my roof and my dangerously sinking front porch that we were cited for from City Code Enforcement.

Without LifeCare Alliance, there would have been no way I could have afforded to do these repairs unless I hit the lottery or something.

UPDATE: Two years later, a code officer contacted LifeCare Alliance to report that Linda’s health issues were affecting her mobility. He said Linda took a very bad fall of the back porch area.

LifeCare Alliance contacted the couple to see what we could do for them. They asked if we could build some type of ramp off the back porch leading down to the garage to help Linda with her mobility issues.

Linda shared her story with us:

I wanted to thank LifeCare Alliance, The Home Depot and the kind and professional gentleman contractors from B & B Property, who have always taken care of our needs.

After meeting Maurice at one of the association meetings where he spoke about this program, our lives haven’t been the same since. He and his team have been such a blessing to us and allowing us to stay in our home safely. There was no way we could afford to do any of the work that LifeCare and Team Depot has provided us the past two years. I also want to mention our code officer and friend Robert for looking out for us.

LifeCare Alliance clients Bob and Linda

Before:

Before Ramp Installation - Porch with steps

After:

Logan poses with a baseball bat

Don’t Let Panic Guide Your Response When Things “Escalate Quickly”

By | Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Featured News, It Takes a Family

Wow…has life changed in a month! I just keep flashing back to a meme I saw on social media that read, “well that escalated quickly.” NO KIDDING!

But when I stepped back to think about this crazy worldwide pandemic that we are experiencing, I also think I’ve been through things that “escalated quickly” before.

These things have been scary and life altering, and yet, here I am, still living life to the fullest daily.

When Logan was diagnosed with T1D it felt like one of those things that went in slow motion, but at warp speed all at the same time. My husband, Andrew, is diabetic, and this was his biggest fear in having children. I remember him saying to me “I just don’t want our kids to be diabetic.”

So when he started seeing signs in Logan, I thought for sure it was him overreacting. Logan drank a lot of chocolate milk at night, so of course he would have to go to the bathroom at night. That doesn’t mean he’s diabetic. When I agreed to have Andrew check Logan’s sugar, I thought I was going to be proving my point.

I was wrong.

That’s when I felt like things were in slow motion, but in warp speed. It all of the sudden escalated quickly.

But I say all of that to say this: We’ve been through life-altering, scary things before. True, it was not on a worldwide pandemic level. But tell me someone who DIDN’T have the feeling of your life crumbling around you, just for a minute, when your child was diagnosed with diabetes?

How did you handle that life altering, scary moment in your life? Did you cry a lot? Did you yell? Did you let your “type A” personality kick in and just keep organized and systematic to keep it all together? And after you remember how you handled it, answer this question: Did it work well for you?

If it did—GREAT! Then you know what way works best for you in this situation to get through this.

If it didn’t, you get to make a choice. What will you change TODAY to help you feel more confident in how you respond to our current reality?

There is A LOT of panic in the world right now. And again, you may have had that feeling before in life. I implore you to go back to that moment and think about how it served you in that moment. More times than not, panic just builds the fear and anxiety and makes it more difficult to focus on the facts.

The facts we have, as I see them, are that we get the opportunity to slow down and spend time with our family. We get to catch up with friends in ways that we have never taken the time to do before. We get to show people how to handle fear and anxiety that we have experienced with feeling. Right now, we get to model for people the best way we can to lean into strength and conscious choices, rather than fear and panic.

Finally, let me tell you this: It is still normal, no matter how many scary things you have been through, to still have fear, grief, and a whole multitude of emotions. But you’ve been here before when it comes to the thoughts and emotions of “life is over,” “life will never be the same.”

YOU’VE GOT THIS.

Don’t push that experience away or downplay it…use it as your superpower.

About

Family photo of Dunlap family

This blog post is PART FOUR of IT TAKES A FAMILY: LIFE WITH TYPE 1, written by Lindsay Dunlap.

The Dunlap family lives with two generations of T1D, and Lindsay is graciously sharing their experience with us. If you’d like to connect with Lindsay, she’d be happy to talk about the highs and lows with you at lindsay@lindsaydunlapcoaching.com.

Learn More

Click here to learn more about the Central Ohio Diabetes Association, including support for families through programs such as Camp Hamwi.