New Programs, Board Members, Aging Misconceptions Identified — All Part of At Home In Darien Annual Meeting

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This year’s new programs were described during At Home In Darien’s annual meeting, including a Half-Price Taxi Program for seniors, and the 70 attendees heard a talk on aging and aging programs.

— an announcement from At Home In Darien

Gina Blum, executive director, spoke to the crowd at the Dec. 6 meeting in Darien Library about the organization’s recent accomplishments. Blum was particularly proud of these 2018 milestones:

* A multi-year strategic plan to move the organization forward

* A new Half-Price Taxi Voucher Program for anytime on-demand transportation at a reasonable price

* Dementia Friend Champion Training Program completed by Blum and McGuire. The program is designed to make the community more age friendly. Upcoming programs will train Darien residents and others to become Dementia Friends. Attendees will learn what it’s like to live with dementia and hopefully turn that understanding into small and purposeful actions to make the community more age friendly.

* Collaborative effort with Darien’s elementary schools and their Kids Care Clubs to encourage outreach with seniors in the community

10-Year Anniversary Celebrations in 2019

At the meeting, Blum announced that At Home In Darien will be celebrating its 10th anniversary of providing services to seniors. To celebrate this milestone, two anniversary celebrations are planned for 2019.

Their first fundraising event will honor those who helped make At Home In Darien a success and will be held on Friday evening, May 10, 2019, at the Country Club of Darien. Please save the date! In addition, there will be a town-wide celebration in September.

New Board Members, New Officers

Newly elected to the At Home In Darien Board were members Amy Harned and James Metzger.

Susan Bhirud was elected as president, Olive Hauser, John Hess, Tamsin Sickinger, Robin Woods, and Alison Wright as vice presidents, William Ball as treasurer, and Anne Burleigh as secretary.

Newly Elected At Home In Darien Board Members

Photo from At Home In Darien

Newly Elected At Home In Darien Board Members Amy Harned, President Susan Bhirud and James Metzger.

Anne McGuire, current president, stepped down after serving in the position since 2014, but will continue to serve on the board. McGuire also thanked retiring board member Kaye Barker, a founding member of the organization, “for all the time and support she provided to At Home In Darien through the years.”

Speaker on Importance of Aging-in-Place Organizations

Dr. Michael Ego, University of Connecticut Professor of Human Development & Family Studies, was the featured guest speaker. Dr. Ego discussed the importance of aging-in-place organizations effecting inter-generational communities.

He discussed the misinformation and misconceptions about aging — physiological social, cultural, and others. Audience members took a ‘Facts on Aging’ quiz to highlight ageism, a form of stereotyping, prejudice and discrimination against people based on their age.

Answers to the quiz were quite surprising! Dr. Ego said “My goal is to help bridge the intergenerational gap between age groups.”

The Facts on Aging Quiz and answers can be found on the At Home In Darien website.

Watch the Annual Meeting Yourself

The Annual Meeting, filmed by TV Channel 79, Darien’s government and community TV station, ran just under 45 minutes and can be viewed online the At Home In Darien website or here:

At Home in Darien Annual Meeting 12-6-18 from Darien TV79 on Vimeo.

About At Home In Darien

lder adults in Darien to live independently, comfortably and with dignity in their own homes for as long as possible. For more information, or to volunteer, please call 203.655.2227 or visit the organization’s website.

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