The holidays will look a bit different for many of us this year. The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we live and interact with one another. For many older adults, this can mean a loss of social connections that, if left unaddressed, can have serious negative mental and physical health consequences. This is why LifeStream Services is participating in Home for the Holidays, a national campaign led by the Eldercare Locator and the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a), this year in partnership with the University of California, San Diego Center for Healthy Aging.
Launched every year during the holiday season, Home for the Holidays is intended to help families and friends discuss difficult topics with their loved ones. A new consumer brochure is the focus of this year’s campaign, Staying Connected and Healthy During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Resources for Older Adults and Caregivers, which highlights the importance of social connection, its impact on our physical and mental health—and ways the Aging Network can help older adults connect to their communities during this time of limited in-person social
interactions. LifeStream Services can inform and connect consumers to programs that provide a variety of ways to stay connected to others in their communities, including the Friendly Caller Program, virtual tours, Geri-Fit virtual fitness, and a variety of curbside/drive-thru programs. This is all part of our mission to help older adults maintain existing and develop new social connections to reduce social isolation and loneliness.
- Friendly Caller Program: Matches volunteers with older adults to simply enjoy conversation and ease feelings of loneliness. Those interested in receiving calls should call LifeStream at 800-589-1121. People interested in volunteering to make calls should contact Laura Bray, Volunteer Services Administrator, at 765-759-3372 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- LifeStream Curbside: Adults age 60 and up can drive-thru to receive a meal pack and a curbside enhancer courtesy of LifeStream Services. Social distancing measures will be in place to keep the community safe. This program is available to anyone over the age of 60 who is experiencing a lack of socialization or nutrition. Meals must be reserved at least one week in advance with your local site. Find a meal site near you here or call 800-589-1121.
- Virtual Programs: LifeStream has a variety of virtual opportunities including Geri-Fit, Dementia Friends Information Sessions, LifeStream Live with Angie, and more. See a complete list and learn more here.
- Senior Safety Net Food Distributions: LifeStream and Second Harvest partner to provide Senior Safety Net food distributions in Blackford, Delaware, Henry, Jay, Madison and Randolph counties. These sites provide assorted foods to people who are 60 and over. Distributions are a drive-thru format and practice safe social distancing. Find a distribution near you here.
For more information about the campaign and other local resources available for older adults and their caregivers, contact LifeStream Services at 800-589-1121 or fill out the contact form on our website here.