Wed11262014

Senior Lifestyles

Demography is destiny: Senior Committee promotes charter

Photo Elliott Burr/Town Crier Senior Committee members Al Traficanti and Karen Jenney work to enhance the well-being of a fast-growing demographic.

 

Los Altos and Los Altos Hills may be the only cities in California that get it when it comes to the aging of America. Why? Because we have a Senior Committee with a charter “to promote and enhance the quality of life and well-being of senior citizens in both communities.”

Did you know that there are 78 million baby boomers, and that starting in 2010, boomers are marching into the largest demographic shift in human history? That’s right, the fastest-growing segment of the human population is older adults, those 60 and older. From now until 2030, 20 percent of the population will be more than 60 years old.

Their respective city councils appointed nine Senior Committee members from Los Altos and Los Altos Hills to grapple with the issues and opportunities of this social change and make recommendations.

Since their first meeting in June, they have formulated subcommittees relating to funding opportunities, assessing the current and ongoing needs of the senior community and conducting research on available resources for older adults.

In October, the Los Altos City Council asked the committee to assess the social and nutritional components of the Senior Lunch Program at the Los Altos Senior Center.

The center offers two lunches per month: a standard nutritious lunch offered on the second Friday and a special event/themed nutritious lunch on the fourth Friday. Committee members plan to attend the luncheons, interview participants and formulate recommendations for the meal programs.

Hot-meal plans are the cornerstone of community-based programs for older adults. Congregate meal programs began in 1972 and are supported by Title III of the Older Americans Act. Meal programs are designed to reduce hunger and food insecurity as well as promote the socialization, health and well-being of older adults.

Committee members are Diane Brauch, Tanya DeMare, Karen Jenney, Catherine Long Popell, William Palmer, Anabel Pelham, Kathy Seddiqui, Gabrielle Tiemann and Al Traficanti.

The committee meets 4:30 p.m. the first Monday of the month in Room 11 at Hillview Community Center, 97 Hillview Ave., Los Altos. The public is invited to attend.

– Sarah Gualtieri and Candace Bates, on behalf of the Los Altos/Los Altos Hills Senior Committee

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