Tag Archives: SunServe Social Service

Progressive Holiday Blog Party with Caregiving.com


The Purple Jacket Highly and The Bow Tie Guy highly recommends Caregiving.com

The Purple Jacket and The Bow Tie Guy highly recommends Caregiving.com

The Purple Jacket is pleased to take part in this year’s Progressive Holiday Blog Party with the wonderful members of Caregiving.com.  The Community at Caregiving.com  is like having an extended family;  I am proud to be a part of this wonderful group!

For those first time visitors to ‘The Purple Jacket’ welcome and Thank You for stopping by!  I blog about my Caregiving SONY DSCexperience for my partner, who I loving refer to as ‘The Little One.’  He was diagnosed with esophagus cancer in August of 2011.  Given three to four months to live, he has outlived all predictions.  While each one of us deals with the reality of cancer in a different way, each one of us wants to look on the bright side of life. Yesterday is gone, today is here, not sure about tomorrow. It is our hope that lets us withstand problems; it is our beliefs that let us find solutions.

To learn more about me,  I invite you to visit my ‘about page’ on my website by clicking here.

My Blog Talk Radio Show, Be A Healthy Caregiver’  airs every Tuesday at Blog Talk Radio1:00 pm.  If you would like to be a guest on the show, please contact me at Chirs@thepurplejacket.com

Currently I am the coördinator of Senior Services with SunServe Social Services in Wilton Manors, FL.SunServe logo deb  I am also an M.A. Candidate attending Gonzaga University studying Leadership and Communication .

Remember…We Might Have Cancer…But Cancer Does Not Have Us!

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Filed under advocacy, Advocate, Be A Healthy Caregiver, Caregiving, LGBT Caregiving, LGBT Couples, LGBT Seniors

November is National Caregivers Month


From ‘The Bow Tie Guy’ and ‘The Little One’

We recognize and thank all Caregivers… especially during National Caregivers Month

You see, We Might have Cancer, but Cancer Does Not have us

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Be A Healthy Caregiver on Blog Talk Radio


 

Join  Chris MacLellan ‘The Bow Tie Guy’ on Tuesday at 1:00pm (est) for ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’ on Blog Talk Radio  with  special guest Patrick Cavanaugh from Broward County Elderly and Veterans Services in Broward County Florida

 

 

 

 

Substance abuse is an issue that is not often discussed as it relates to our senior community.  Join us for a friendly conversation with Patrick  Cavanaugh with Broward County Elderly and Veterans Services Prevention Program as we discuss substance abuse issues relating to seniors and caregivers.

 

The Prevention Program activities are directed at older adults 55 years and older. Some are provided to at-risk elders, primarily those experiencing mental health and/or emotional problems, caregivers and the general public. Mr. Cavanaugh interacts and/or provides direct services to older adults in an effort to comprehensively address older adult substance abuse in an integrated manner. Over one thousand consumers per year participate in these services.

 

You’ll enjoy Mr. Cavanagh’s upbeat and positive attitude, this is someone who really enjoys his work!

 

Click here to join the show scheduled for Tuesday October 30th at 1:00pm

 

 

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Filed under Blog Talk Radio, caregiver, Caregiving, Intergenerational, Live Love Laugh, Unconditional Love

On Borrowed Time?


 

I decided to try something different this evening with my blog post… I am using Dragon Naturally Speaking to post my blog this evening.  I have come to the realization that I am much better at speaking than I am at typing: this just might be a better way for me to communicate my thoughts, feelings and emotions as I moved forward with ‘The Purple Jacket.”  So far so good!

Jewish Halo

This past week,  The Little One had his appointment with the oncologist. What was amazing about this appointment was that I did not feel the need, nor did I have the time to go to the appointment with him.   Now the ‘Mother Hen’ in me worried all morning about the whereabouts of “The Little One” yet  I knew deep down inside me that could handle the oncologist, handle the drive down to the office and be independent.  He did not get to be 81 without some form of independence!

Just as is the primary care doctor was encouraged at his progress, so was the oncologist.  It just so happens that the oncologist and the primary care doctor share the same office space;  this convenient for sharing information between staff and doctors.  The other benefit of this location in that the chemotherapy treatments is on the site, too! This  setup has made easier, not only for “The Little One”, but for all the patients that these physicians see on a regular basis.

The oncologist continued to spread good cheer,  good health and well-being for “The Little One.”  As I mentioned in my last blog post, the oncologist had projected 3 or 4 months to live after the initial diagnosis and subsequent treatments.  While he is pleased to be proven wrong, statistically speaking, the cure rate for esophageal cancer is one of the lowest there is.  If we are going solely by the book, then 3 to 4 months is correct.

It is understandable why a diagnosis like this would be attached to such a short lifespan.  That being said,  we forged ahead mindful of the pitfalls, yet striving for the best possible results.  We never want to rule out hope!

 I guess what amazes me the most about this visit to the oncologist is not the fact that we all recognize that the little one has far exceeded anyone’s expectations; it’s why is the doctor felt like he has to end this positive visit with the words…”You know you’re on borrowed time!”

Photo Credit: Pinterest

Granted I was not there for this conversation, and I have no reason to doubt what “The Little One” has told me in regards to this conversation.  Yet, I am not sure what the purpose of comments like this does for a patient, for a caregiver or for the physician themselves?  Throughout this whole ordeal, we have taken a positive approach to dealing with the effects of cancer. We could sulked, we could  have  played the blame game, we could have gone into denial… However, what good would that have done for either one of us?  That’s just like saying…”you know we’re on borrowed time.”  

I do not claim to be a doctor, I do not claim to be a clinician, but I do believe that I understand how a positive outlook and healthy communication  can have a soothing and  healing effect on the mind, on the body, and of the spirit when dealing with critical health issues.  When you think about it,  we are all on borrowed time, yet does a cancer patient really need to be reminded of that?

Photo Credit: Pinterst

The healing power of body, mind and spirit plays such an important role in overcoming physical (and mental) illness.   To use a sports metaphor, the best defense is usually a good offense.  The best way to deal with a diagnosis of cancer is to be as realistic and honest as possible.  Our best offense was to plunge full force  When I look at this comment from the oncologist in this light, I can understand it.  Yet to presuppose a diagnosis without the addition of hope, only leads us to despair.  Reality is painful enough, more so without the effects of hope!

Sometimes Just Being There is all we need

Through this experience, I am convinced that one of the key tools in transmitting hope and reality,  is the ability to be an empathetic communicator.    Calmly… Empathy transmits hope and reality.  I don’t think that there is anymore that we can ask for when dealing with the stark reality of Cancer or any other disabling illness.

You see…We Might Have Cancer…But Cancer Does Not Have Us! 

Photo Credit: ‘The Bow-Tie-Guy”

 

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Filed under advocacy, Advocate, Bow Tie Guy, cancer treatments, Caregiving, Esophagus Cancer, Gay Caregiving, Gay Seniors, LGBT, LGBT Caregiving, LGBT Couples, LGBT Seniors, Spirituality

Amazement!


Photo Credit: Pinterest

As we continue to move forward with his aftercare, there is amazement on every side of the aisle. Our last report from the primary care doctor was terrific. She, like everyone else involved in his care, is utterly amazed at the progress that ‘The Little One’ has made since this ordeal started almost a year ago. I have been reluctant to blog lately, because quite frankly, I am amazed (and quite busy) too.

When ‘The Little One’ was diagnosed with cancer in late July of 2011, we started six weeks’ worth of treatments almost immediately. The outcome looked bleak back then, and in fact the doctors gave us little hope for the future when the diagnosis came in. ‘Three maybe four months” said the oncologist back in September of 2011.

It was at that time I made the conscious decision to withhold that information from ‘The Little One’ while telling the doctor ‘let’s wait and see how he responds to treatments.’ I never shared that conversation with ‘The Little One’ until after our last appointment with his primary care doctor just a few weeks ago. (If we are doing the math, that last appointment was in June; I was told in August of 2011 that he had 3 to 4 months. We are almost to a year since the first treatments….) Of course, I consulted with the oncologist on the decision not to share this information with ‘The Little One’ , and he agreed. “Let see how the treatments go and let him live his life to the fullest!” He has exceeded all expectations, and now his doctors want to do a case study on him.

Photo Credit: Pinterest

To withhold this information is a difficult judgment call that caregivers, spouses, doctors have to make on a daily basis. I made this decision based on one simple fact. ‘The Little One’ knew that he had cancer, and he knew that it was serious; I also knew that he was going to do anything he possibly could to beat the diagnosis. Why train the mind to think something is going to happen, when we really do not know when is going to happen?

This week, ‘The Little One’ will visit his oncologist for a quarterly check-up. I am confident that the oncologist will be pleased and say again….”Bern, you look great,” which ‘The Little One will reply, “ Yes, I’ve got a new embalmer!” Laughter is the best medicine, even in its most trying times.

What is left of the tumor is dormant and for all intent and purposes, his cancer is in remission. From the first day, we have taken this day by day. What else is there to do? Every case is different. My decision to withhold this information from “The Little One” was not an easy decision to make. After revealing this decision to him, he was glad not to know… even though he did know.

Photo Credit: Pinterest

In a sad, but beautiful twist of fate, ‘The Little One’s lifelong friend Jill has recently been diagnosed with cancer. Like our first report, Jill’s first report has us all concerned. What is beautiful about this is how ‘The Little One’  is able to transfer his experience of this insidious disease to Jill… to encourage her, to console her, to simply be there for her.  This gift of encouragement is one of the best gifts that one can give to a friend.

We send out a big hug and hello to our friend Doug in STL who is going through treatments at this time.  We are thinking of you Doug!

 Remember…We might have cancer…But cancer does not have us.

Photo Credit: The Purple Jacket

As you have noticed, we have taken a break from Blogging on ‘The Purple Jacket’ for the past few weeks.  As I transition into a new job and into a new academic program at Gonzaga University, “The Purple Jacket” will be taking on a new look too.   We will continue to provide you updates on ‘The Little One’ as this blog is really dedicated to him.  Yet in future weeks, we will expand the content of the blog to discuss the effects of Caregiving on the caregiver.   What is often overlooked in Caregiving is the importance of the health of the caregiver.  Personally, I have had to take a long hard look at this issue, and have come to the conclusion  that the best way to deal with this issue is to blog about it.  In essence, there is a real purple jacket.  I just can’t fit into it any longer.   We have to explore the issue of what it means to be a healthy caregiver!

Photo Credit: Caregiving.com

I am BIG fan of Caregiving.com  The community on Caregiving.com is just tremendous and Denise Brown who is the proprietor of this wonderful website, is an expert in the field of Caregiving. You want to be sure to check out Caregiving.com and become a part of the Caregiving family too!  Follow Denise on Twitter @caregiving and on Blog Talk Radio, too!

WE will also be exploring a new communication theory entitled ‘The Theory of Empathic Communication” in an upcoming blog posts, as well as our Phone A Friend program at SunServe Social Services.  We will also be chatting about a great program at the Pride Center in Fort Lauderdale, Coffee & Conversation which takes place every Tuesday morning at 11:00 am in Wilton Manors, Florida.   I will also have some speaking engagements to announce in August and September.  Coming soon,  ‘The Bow-Tie-Guy’ on Blog Talk Radio!  

Photo Credit: The Bow-Tie-Guy

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Filed under advocacy, Advocate, Blog, Bow Tie, Bow Tie Guy, cancer treatments, Caregiving, Gay Caregiving, Gay Seniors, Inter-generational Relationships, LGBT, LGBT Caregiving, LGBT Couples, oncology

Communities of One?


Photo Credit: Free Digital Photo’s

Roads that appear smooth can turn bumpy on a moment’s notice.  That happened to us this weekend as ‘The Little One’ experienced some ‘bumps in the road’ with his esophagus.  There has been so much smooth sailing over the past month or so that the events of this weekend took us by surprise.  We take so much for granted in life, and expect our systems to run without a problem.  Since the diagnosis of esophageal   cancer in August, we have learned that food can be a funny thing.  There is no rhyme or reason why one form of food has more difficulty passing the ‘bump in the road’ in his esophagus more so than another does.  It just happens.

While the three instances this weekend were alarming, they reminded us that no matter how good we might feel, there is  always an issue lurking around the corner.  I am happy to report that as of Sunday night and moving into Monday, ‘The Little One’ is doing well and there has been no problems with the esophagus. These episodes take quite a bit out of us simply because of the unknown.  While the food pass ‘the bump in the road’…when is the right time to call 911?  It is a delicate balance and sometimes you just have to hope and pray the you make the right decision.

As I write about our weekend, I started to think about a man who I met through my work at SunServe Social Services.   This gentleman lives independently at Continuing Care Retirement facility and while there appears to be loads of activities,  he feels “on the outside looking in’ because as an LGBT Senior, his living environment is not sensitive to the needs of LGBT Seniors.

Some people might ask…Just what are the needs of an LGBT Seniors?

If you have to ask that question, then I think the best reference for you would be The LGBT Aging Center report on Language and LGBT Housing: Making Models that Fits all Housing. 

Aging in America is difficult enough; LGBT Aging is two-fold.   Think of it this way…As a kid every one of us had that awkward moment where we felt like we did not belong, we stood out in a crowd, or felt  left our by a group.  Today, across America, LGBT Seniors have those  same feelings and emotions we had as kids when they are thrust in facilities that are not sensitive to their needs.  Imagine trusting your care to someone who dislikes you for who you are…Remember Nurse Rachett?

Thinking about this gentleman  lead me to think…”what could be possibly be worse”… Living alone or living in a community where you are alone?

 [polldaddy poll=6145755]

While society is changing, we have a long way to go before there is acceptance. Overtime…with proper training, logical conversation, while using  active listening skills, change does happen!

Photo Credit: Free Digital Photos (he should be wearing a bow-tie)

I am happy to be associated with an organization like SunServe Social Services   who provides ongoing organizational consultation to help companies, organizations and service providers  in becoming more LGBT competent through policy and procedures alignment with best practices for LGBT care.  It is through awareness and sensitivity training where we step outside our comfort zone and learn that there are other ways at looking at life is making a difference in our community. 

Sure, my plans for this past weekend took a major detour as I had to make some adjustments in my life to care for the one that I love.  But isn’t that what life is all about?  What I was supposed to do this weekend was important, but as a caregiver, I am on call 24-7 and sometimes you have to weigh what actually is  important in life.

While we are secure in our relationship and know that these ‘bumps in the road’ are going to happen from time to time, I am left to  wonder about all those other ‘little-ones’ out there who have to fend for themselves in a system that is not accepting of them: I wonder about all those frail seniors who live alone just looking for someone to have a conversation with on a daily basis.   I wonder about all those seniors who live in a community, yet feel like they are alone.   Being alone in a community has to be the worst feeling anyone could ever experience in life.

 Let it be our goal that there will never be a community of one!

You, see…We might have cancer, but cancer does not have us!

   

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LGBT Seniors, Invisible No More


LGBT Seniors, Invisible No More

Discrimination and legal inequalities take toll on health and health care

05.25.2012By Barbara Moran
LGBT Senior Citizens, social policy, social work, Robert B Hudson, Boston University School of Social WorkRobert B. Hudson says that some members of the health care community “have treated LGBT people with condescension, and that in turn has often led people to put off preventive services.” Photo courtesy of the Boston University School of Social Work

In 2009, according to the U.S. Administration on Aging, about one in eight Americans was over age 65. That adds up to 39.6 million people, or almost 13 percent of the U.S population. By 2030, there will be about 72.1 million in that age group, or about 19 percent of the population.

While many studies have been done on America’s aging population, little research has focused on a group facing special issues as they age: the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community. Today’s LGBT elders have lived through decades of discrimination, which, it turns out, has huge repercussions as they age. Yet LGBT seniors have been largely ignored in policy on aging.

To help address this oversight, Robert B. Hudson, a School of Social Work professor of social policy and managing editor of the journal Public Policy and Aging Report, devoted an issue to the topic of LGBT seniors, with articles written by a range of researchers, service providers, and advocates involved with LGBT policy concerns. According to Hudson, the issue received more positive feedback “than just about anything else we’ve done.” In his introduction, he writes, “These individuals have remained nearly invisible to the community of advocates, researchers, practitioners, administrators, and politicians who associate themselves with the modern aging enterprise.”

BU Today recently spoke with Hudson about the insights gained from the project and what steps need to be taken to help aging members of the LGBT community.

Public Policy & Aging Report, Integrating Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Older Adults into Aging Policy and Practice

BU Today: Why did you focus an issue of Public Policy and Aging Report on the LGBT community?

Hudson: One thing we’re always trying to do is highlight under recognized issues, and this is one that really has to be near the top of the list. There is simply not much of a literature devoted to older LGBT people. There is a whole world of aging research and aging agencies that provide a range of benefits to older people, and there is a separate series of agencies and research that address the LGBT population. But they often don’t come together.

Why do you think that is?

Well, as a political scientist, I see it centrally rooted in bureaucratic behavior. The aging agencies are organized around classic aging-related issues like nutrition, social services, and legal services. The LGBT community has never had the same level of attention.

So what’s been the result of that gap?

Massive under service. When you look at the literature, LGBT access to health care is suboptimal. And that’s for two reasons: one is that some members of the health care community have treated LGBT people with condescension, and that in turn has often led people to put off preventive services. More broadly, LGBT individuals are often denied protections such as survivorship, visitation rights, and living wills, because the legal system does not recognize their living arrangements.

What health issues other than access to health care are specific to LGBT seniors? The Report notes higher levels of smoking, drinking, and rates of depression.

The mental health issues are the ones that stand out, and I think it’s something that the larger population does not appreciate. The stressors around discrimination in those communities have been so high for so long that substance abuse issues are much more widespread than the larger public thinks. People ought to know that discrimination has consequences.

The other issue to be mentioned is HIV-AIDS. And again, something that is underrecognized is that people who are HIV-positive are getting older, thanks to drugs that are turning HIV-AIDS into a chronic illness rather than a death sentence. But it is also true that people are contracting AIDS over age 55 at somewhat higher rates than before.

That’s the group you’d think has been the most indoctrinated about safe sex practices.

Indoctrinated, yes, but on the other hand, I think it’s something about aging. I think some people may say, “We’re old, we probably can’t get it.” But in fact, as you get older, the body becomes more fragile, and it may make transmission more likely.

Is there also a lack of safe-sex education, most of which seems targeted at young people, for older adults?

I think that has been the case. A lot of the public health initiatives within the LGBT community are aimed implicitly—if not explicitly—at younger people. The classic imagery we’ve had of older people in general is relevant here; they’re frail and alone or cut off in nursing homes, so they tend to get forgotten and excluded from all sorts of helpful interventions. And then members of the aging community, either through lack of interest—or in some cases, discrimination—may not want to engage with the older gay population. And so older LGBT folks really do fall between the cracks.

LGBT seniors lived through decades of discrimination, with homosexuality a crime or deemed a mental illness. The Report says 82 percent have been victimized at least once. With homosexuality so much more accepted now, it’s hard to realize what they went through.

Well, for somebody my age it’s not hard to remember. I mean, you could get in all sorts of serious trouble by identifying as gay or being seen as gay—bullying, violence, employment discrimination, health care, the whole gamut. I think most people now don’t recognize how tough it was for LGBT people to grow up in the world they did. And if you listen to today’s political debate, there are candidates out there who are inferring things about certain populations—including this one—that are pretty nasty.

What are the major impacts on seniors of coming of age with that level of hostility?

Certainly there are impacts in mental health issues, but also in economic issues. If you were discriminated against at age 20, 30, and 40, trying to get a decent job, trying to get promoted, trying not to get fired, hoping to be invited to the company family picnic, needing to go out on the golf course with the guys where the deals are being made, and they shun you because they suspect you’re not one of them—there are huge career ramifications.

So it really is a lifelong thing. In aging we talk about “cumulative advantage” and “cumulative disadvantage.” If you went to Andover and Harvard when you were younger, you have a better train ride than somebody who didn’t. And in this case, to have been knocked off career and health care and other rails early on by reason of discrimination, a trajectory that might have gone quite high will instead be flat. And in some ways it gets worse in old age. The passage of time amplifies the discriminations you’ve encountered over the course of 30 to 40 years.

The Report says LGBT seniors are twice as likely to live alone as heterosexual seniors, and four times more likely to have no children. How does this affect their support network?

It’s a huge issue. In the case of chronic illness, something like 80 percent of all care is provided by so-called informal supports—mainly family, notably wives, daughters, and daughters-in-law. This is a population that has much lower marriage rates and somewhat higher levels of disaffection from their biological families due to their orientation. There are fewer children, fewer spouses, and the extended family of aunts, uncles, nieces, and nephews may also be thinner. That is compensated for in part by friends, but the lack of family-based informal supports is a concern in this community.

The LGBT community seems to have exceptionally strong social networks, for just those reasons. But in this regard that doesn’t seem to compensate enough. Do you think this will change for the next generation of seniors?

I think over time, with greater acceptance of these communities, yes it will get better. But it’s going to be a long process. It’s interesting the extent to which same-sex marriage has taken hold in many parts of the country, which certainly wasn’t the case 20 years ago. But it’s going to be a very long process.

With gay marriage gaining acceptance and many more gay couples having or adopting children, is it likely their support networks will be strengthened?

I think that’s right, but I think it will vary a lot geographically. There are still a number of states where gays and lesbians cannot adopt children.

Do you think we’ll see gay- and lesbian-specific nursing homes at some point?

Interesting question. There are retirement communities—I don’t know their legal status—that certainly have attracted LGBT people. There are at least two or three dozen retirement areas in various parts of the country that are known to be attractive to members of the LGBT community. It wouldn’t be possible in most nursing homes because it would violate Medicaid reimbursement laws.

So what should be the top priority for the LGBT senior agenda? What should researchers and policymakers be thinking about to best serve this group?

On the policy level, I always think first of Social Security benefits. If you don’t have legally recognized dependents, you can’t get a dependent benefit. If you die and you had a partner, but you were not legally married—and to the federal government you can’t be legally married if you’re gay or lesbian—then there’s no survivor benefit.

In the health care world, prohibitions tied to visitation and to proxies and living wills are big things that have to be overcome.

But I think the biggest issue is in some ways the hardest issue to tackle, and that is acculturation and acceptance: being fully accepted as part of the range of American citizenry. LGBT elders may not be exactly like you, but there are lots of people who aren’t exactly like you, so let’s get over it, old and young alike.

View a copy of the Public Policy & Aging Report issue “Integrating Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Older Adults into Aging Policy and Practice” here.

Barbara Moran (COM’96) is a science writer in Brookline, Mass. She can be reached through her website. Permission to post this article on ‘The Purple Jacket’ was granted by Barbara Moran.

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Filed under advocacy, Advocate, Bow Tie, Bow Tie Guy, Caregiving, Gay Caregiving, Gay Seniors, LGBT Caregiving, LGBT Couples, LGBT Seniors, Older man, SAGE, Senior Health

In These Shoes Part III


The ‘new shoes are feeling just fine…so much so, the ‘Imelda Marcos’ of South Florida has decided to come out…rather…clean out his closet!

Photo credit: ‘The Purple Jacket’

One thing the real Imelda never did; was something that made me proud of ‘The Little One’

Photo Credit: ‘The Purple Jacket’

When you give up something, it always comes back two-fold!

You see…We might have cancer, but cancer does not have us! 

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Filed under Advocate, Bow Tie Guy, Caregiving, Gay Caregiving, Gay Seniors, LGBT Caregiving, LGBT Couples, LGBT Seniors, Older man

SunServe and The Purple Jacket: A Perfect Match


I am pleased to announce that ‘The Purple Jacket’ and ‘The Bow-Tie-Guy’ have joined the staff at SunServe Social Services in Fort Lauderdale, Florida  as the coordinator of Senior Services.     SunServe Social Services is the home of the Noble A. McArtor Adult Day Care Center .  Opening in 2004,  the Noble A. McArtor Adult Day Care Center   has been on the frontier for serving the needs of the LGBT senior community in South Florida.

The Noble A. McArtor Adult Day Care Center has always had a special place in my heart as my close friend, Father Richard Orlando, was one of the first participants of the center when it first opened in 2004.     During his time at  Noble A. McArtor Adult Day Care Center, Father Orlando excelled in all facets of his life.  The staff and participants at the center were a major part in providing Father Orlando with a beautiful “SunSet” to his life!

Having been away from Fort Lauderdale for four years and upon returning to Fort Lauderdale in March 2012, I was shocked, surprised and impressed to see the growth of  SunServe Social Services in such a short period of time.   SunServe  has grown into a comprehensive social service agency, offering a number of professional services to the LGBT Community in Fort Lauderdale including:

SunServe Social Services provides high quality, compassionate, and progressive care for all, including those in financial need, minorities, youth, seniors, families, and those with life-challenging physical or emotional conditions.  The growth of SunServe Social Services is a truly remarkable and is a testament to the entire staff.
 
Forging ahead with this collaboration is a  perfect fit for ‘The Purple Jacket’ and ‘The Bow-Tie-Guy’ as we continue to talk about the real-life issues and needs  of LGBT Aging, Health and Caregiving
SunServe Social Services is rolling out a telephone tree to call our LGBTQ neighbors in Broward County who may be homebound or would like to touch base with someone every day.  If you are in South Florida, I urge you to become active in this program.

You:  Would have to make a commitment to call your client once a day – at a specific time you both find convenient – to check on them, give them an update and share some news.

 You:  Would make a commitment to serve for 6 months at a time.

Yes, you can take a vacation but you will have to let your phone team leader know so another volunteer can cover your client.

Yes, you can go back north for the summer; you might decide to continue your calls from “Up North” or we can ask another volunteer to call for you.

Yes, we can utilize your services for the months that you are here.

Yes, there is a three-hour training that you need to attend on Saturday, May 19th from 10 – 1 PM at SunServe.

Yes, you can have more than one client.

Yes, you will have to keep a brief daily log and report to your telephone team captain once a month on how you are doing, how your client is doing and if any special situations have arisen.

Yes, you can refer friends into the program so they may receive calls.

If you are in Broward County and interested in participating , please call Andrew Forester at 954-764-5150 for a quick phone interview and to sign up for the training on Saturday, May 19 here at the SunServe Office.

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Filed under advocacy, Advocate, Bow Tie Guy, Caregiving, Gay Seniors, LGBT Caregiving, LGBT Couples, LGBT Seniors, Older man, Senior Health