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Thriving While Aging at Home

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Left, Judy Greenwald, At Home program participant, chats with Maddy Sholar, Aging in Place AmeriCorps Coordinator. Photo by Maddy Sholar.

By Kim Myers and Maddie Sholar

Two programs are newly available at the Montpelier Senior Activity Center; the FEAST Senior Meals Kitchen will once again provide meals on site at its Barre Street facility (starting with the hiring of a new chef, whose name has not yet been announced), and a new “At Home’’ program that provides muscle to help with indoor and outdoor chores.

Two new faces have joined the senior center’s team to make all of this possible: FEAST Program Manager Kim Myers, and the AmeriCorps Aging in Place Coordinator Maddie Sholar. Myers and Scholar have been navigating the complexity of reopening the senior center’s kitchen while continuing to provide both meals and services to the community. 

Myers provides resources to members and connects people with nutritious meals. In fact, Myers often delivers meals to FEAST recipients herself to get to know the people who participate in the program. Sholar helps members with tasks such as cleaning gutters, weeding gardens, and organizing household furniture. In one At Home program visit, Sholar not only moved an entire set of patio furniture inside for winter, but she also cleaned the entire gutter surrounding the house. 

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The At Home program offers assistance with chores and tasks, but it also provides an opportunity to socialize with the center’s members. Over the several service visits she’s performed in her two months as the Aging in Place Coordinator, Sholar has heard stories of travel and of Vermont, viewed amazing artwork, and read original writing. 

Myers and Sholar will soon welcome a new chef so that meals can again be produced on site at the center; as part of that, they are coordinating a more intricate collaboration between FEAST and the At Home program, which was established to support seniors as they thrive at home. 

The center welcomes volunteers, and has four ways they can help out with these programs:

  • Ensure socialization for seniors living at home by becoming a walking buddy or join the Wellness Calls team.
  • Offer indoor chore support (COVID-safe activities, of course).
  • Sign up to be part of the outdoor chores team (raking leaves, stacking wood, or shoveling, among other chores). 
  • Help celebrate the center’s kitchen reopening by connecting the older adults in your life with the FEAST meals program.

The FEAST and At Home programs are part of a bigger picture at the senior center, which also coordinates a Meals on Wheels program and Curbside Pickup meals on Tuesdays and Fridays at noon. Both programs are offered at no charge (although donations are accepted and appreciated) to seniors over 60 years of age. 

Kim Myers is the Montpelier Senior Activity Center’s FEAST Program Manager, and Maddie Sholar is the Aging in Place AmeriCorps Coordinator. For more information, call Kim at 802-262-6288 or email kmyers@montpelier-vt.org.