Stay Safe while Staying Fit this Summer

June 23, 2016 - Serving Seniors

With temperatures rising as summer gets underway many older adults will need to adapt their exercise routines accordingly. While we applaud those seniors taking an active role in their health, older adults can be more vulnerable than others to extreme weather changes and should take caution when working to stay fit through these summer months.  The following are a few health tips to make sure older adults are staying safe and protecting themselves against heat exhaustion and other issues related to heat and exercise:

  • Pay attention to your body: Exercise at a level where you feel comfortable and take breaks when needed
  • Drink plenty of fluids: Don’t forget your fluids — even when you may not feel thirsty. Staying hydrated is always important, but especially on hot days.
  • Dress appropriately: On warm days, wear cool, light-colored clothes made of natural fabrics like cotton.
  • Opt for a class indoors: Moving inside to exercise when the weather isn’t cooperating is an easy way to stay safe and exercising with a group means there are others around to help if needed

Feeling Fit Mario Richardson leads the Walking Program

 Serving Seniors Wellness Center offers a variety of ways to stay cool and healthy this summer:

The Feeling Fit Club meets six days a week for a one hour class consisting of cardiovascular exercises as well as strength training and stretching for a well balanced routine.

Walking Group meets twice per week to explore the neighborhoods of San Diego, they walk different routes each session and continue to grow as a group

Chair Yoga new to the Wellness Center this summer meets every Monday to work on flexibility, strength and balance of mind and body

To see a full schedule of activities at the Wellness Center, visit our Lifelong Learning page.

Healthy Aging Begins at Home

June 14, 2016 - Serving Seniors

seniors agree-aging in place june 2016A recent report from the Bipartisan Policy Center found that a greater integration of America’s healthcare and housing systems will be absolutely essential to help manage chronic disease, improve health outcomes for seniors, and enable millions of Americans to age successful in their own homes and communities.

However, the wellbeing and safety of older adults is jeopardized by an inadequate supply of affordable housing and lack of structural features and support services that make “aging in place” difficult.  In addition, about 70 percent of adults over the age of 65 will eventually require help with bathing, food preparation, dressing, and medication management.  These long-term services and supports are not covered by Medicare.

Here are a few recommendations from the study that highlight an investment in the health and well-being of older adults:

  • Preventing and ending homelessness among older adults should become a major national priority.
  • Congress and the administration should identify ways to more effectively support the service coordination needs of senior housing providers, particularly mission-oriented nonprofits.
  • Hospitals should incorporate questions about housing as part of their discharge planning to prevent readmissions.

For additional recommendations or to download a copy of the study, visit

Senior Nutrition Programs Provide Food for Thought

June 10, 2016 - Serving Seniors

By Paul Downey, President/CEO

With the growing number of seniors in California, the Assembly Budget Subcommittee on Health and Human Services recently held a hearing to discuss an increase in funding for senior nutrition programs. There are more than 7.6 million Californians over the age of 60 and 8.6 percent have incomes below the federal poverty level.

I see the faces of seniors living in poverty every single day. At Serving Seniors, the largest provider of senior services in San Diego County, 85 percent of our clients live on $850 per month. Many of our seniors have to choose between food, rent and medication. Our nutrition program, like many throughout the state, provides a critical safety net for the most vulnerable seniors.

However, flat state and federal funding allows for only a small population of seniors living in poverty to be served. Currently, only 3 percent of eligible seniors receive home delivered or congregate meals. About six years ago, California was at the forefront of overmatching federal funds for senior nutrition programs. Today, budgetary shortfalls have eliminated the overmatch, and most communities in California have waiting lists for home delivered meals.

The Assembly Subcommittee is considering a $5.4 million budget augmentation for senior nutrition funding. This investment will save the state millions of dollars. Malnourished seniors take more medication, have higher rates of chronic medical conditions, and are more likely to fall and break bones. They also have hospital stays twice as long as well-nourished patients. Senior nutrition programs, especially home delivered meals, help people stay in their homes instead of a nursing home. It is estimated that the increase of $5.4 million dollars could save the state $61 million per year in reduced nursing home costs.

For more than 20 years, I have witnessed first-hand how senior nutrition programs provide more than just food. Last month, Karen, one of Serving Seniors’ home-delivered meal drivers, brought a meal to one of our clients, a 77-year-old senior living on $942 a month in a single room occupancy hotel in downtown San Diego. Karen found him unresponsive and immediately called paramedics.

Thankfully, he turned out to be okay. Later, when I visited him he expressed his gratitude for Karen’s quick intervention; and also shared that the meals “are a godsend” and that Karen’s visits and positive attitude “lift his spirits.” This is one of the many reasons I advocate for our most vulnerable population.

Welcome to Old Hollywood!

June 6, 2016 - Serving Seniors
Seniors felt like movie stars at the 2nd Annual Senior Prom. Complete with a red carpet entrance, live band, prom photos, snacks and recognition of members of the Royal Court. Volunteers, staff and smiling seniors, including Prom Queen: Angel and Prom King: Frankie looked as if they were 18 again, dancing the afternoon away to the soundtrack of Old Hollywood. This soiree was generously planned and sponsored by the UCSD Life Scholars Program.
carpet dance 3 dance
dance4 photo prom  king queen
To check out all of the pictures from this fun event visit our Facebook page
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