Advocacy is a primary role for all area agencies on aging. Since the first passage of the Older Americans Act in 1965 the aging network has been charged with the responsibility of advocating for the needs of older persons.
The area agency staff, Board of Directors, Advisory Council and service providers work to assure fair treatment for older people and that the interests and needs of older persons are considered when decisions are made in the community. This is done on an individual basis when the agency works with and for an older person to obtain needed physical and financial supports.
Advocacy is done on a policy level when Area XIV Agency on Aging seeks to empower and educate older adults, their families, caregivers, service providers and elected officials about the needs of the aging network. Area XIV supports advocacy groups, such as the Older Iowans Legislature, who work for policy modification. These important policy issues are then proposed to the General Assembly through the efforts of advocacy groups. Policy issues that affect older Iowans are followed throughout the legislative bill process and beyond.
Alzheimer's Respite Care
Time away from your loved one for a few hours, can be what it takes to regain perspective, sanity, and emotional well-being. Since 2007, Area XIV has operated a drop-in respite program for those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. The Creston center operates from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesdays and Fridays. It is located at the First Baptist Church, Prairie and Lincoln in Creston. The Greenfield center, opened in August of 2008 operates form 10.a.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesdays in the First Methodist Church in Greenfield. Both centers provide stimulating activities for participants as well as a nourishing lunch. The Southern Iowa Trolley provides transportation to and from the centers at no charge to the client and, if needed, an aide.
Area XIV funds chore services through MATURA Community Action Program. Chore services include house or yard tasks such as seasonal cleaning, yard work, snow removal, and household maintenance for eligible persons who are unable to perform these tasks for themselves because of frailty or other disabling conditions.
Homemaker service provides assistance, by a trained homemaker, to persons having difficulty with household tasks and personal care such as meal planning and preparation, shopping for personal items, managing money, using the telephone, or light housework. The Area Agency assists with funding to supplement eligible persons ability to pay for needed services.
Family Caregiver Support
The area agency provides help and support to caregivers of older persons or grandparents caring for grandchildren. Information, assistance with gaining access to services, training and education, counseling, respite, and caregiver support groups are offered. A lending library of information and inspiration in the form of books and videos is available at the area agency office.
Information and Assistance
Area XIV staff provide assistance to people seeking information about programs and services available to older persons. Information is provided for seniors or their caregivers about Federal, State and Local programs and services available to the age 60 plus population. Often, getting a service or program in place can assist in helping the person remain independent in his or her own home. Assistance can be provided for completing forms, understanding programs, or contacting services.
Outreach is especially designed to locate and determine the needs of frail older persons
One-on-one service is available and encouraged for seniors or their caregivers for personal consultations. Whether you have a question on advanced directives (durable power of attorney for health care, living wills, etc) or planning for a possible nursing home stay, private and confidential service is provided to the senior and/or their family members.
Preventive Health/Health Promotion
Preventive health service designed for the purpose of promoting the health of older adults by conducting health assessments and teaching clients about ways to maintain, restore and improve their health as older adults and provide information about community health care services and resources including referral to appropriate resources for assistance.
Area XIV Agency on Aging subsidizes rides on the Southern Iowa Trolley for passengers age 60 and over. The Trolley helps older persons maintain their independence by providing a means for them to get to the store, medical appointments, shopping, to visit friends, etc. The Trolley has service available to Des Moines on the first Monday of the month. Priority is given to medical appointments.
To schedule a ride or obtain further information, call the Trolley’s toll-free number 1-866-782-6571 or, in Creston, 782-6571.
Referrals to other agencies can be made to assist the senior or their family members in gaining access to services or programs available. Some of the agencies offering services for seniors are: Department of Human Services, Senior Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP), SMP-Medicare Fraud, Social Security, Case Management for the Frail Elderly (CMPFE), home health agencies, Meals on Wheels organizations, Dinner Date sites or lifeline services.