For over 45 years ElderSource has been able to help countless seniors and their families live better lives by connecting them to valuable community resources. While we may not be able to share every success, here are a few that give a glimpse into how our agency has been able to make a difference in the lives of those we serve.
Several of our featured clients were served by our Senior to Senior Program which is an endowment created by J. Wayne and Delores Barr Weaver coordinated through the Community Foundation of Northeast Florida to assist seniors facing an unexpected financial crisis. The program is also generously supported by a grant from The Jim Moran Foundation.
Unexpected Life Saver
Mrs. Lackey and her husband did well for themselves, Even though things were tight financially, they were making ends meet. Her husband’s health was on a slow, unexpected decline over several months before he passed away. Upon his death, Mrs. Lackey discovered he had not paid several of their bills including rent and utilities.
“I was shocked when I realized he hadn’t been keeping up with the bills,: she said. “I started getting all these late notices in the mail and was overwhelmed.”
To complicate matters, she was locked out of her husband’s online banking accounts and unable to take care of necessary business. Discovering this news, while also dealing with her own disabilities, Mrs. Lackey went into a state of panic. Through the United Way 211 referral system, Mrs. Lackey connected with ElderSource for assistance. The Senior to Senior Fund paid to have her electricity restored and her rent paid.
“I had no idea what I was going to do,” she said. “I’m thankful ElderSource helped me out of the fire. If it wasn’t for ElderSource, I would’ve been out on the street. You helped me to get a break in between so that I could catch things up and get back on my feet. ElderSource is a real life saver…and it felt good to still be treated with kindness.”
An Accessible Dream
Ms. Brown is 84 years old and lives with Phyllis, er daugther and caregiver. Ms. Brown has Alzheimer’s Disease and struggles with limited mobility due to missing cartilage in her knees. This causes her a great deal of pain and instability when she walks. Unable to safely balance and walk on her own, she often uses a wheelchair to get around. While Phyllis has done her best to make things accessible for her mother while working from home, she was still worried about her mother’s safety.
Ms. Brown has experienced several falls around the home. Transporting her to doctor appointments outside of the home had become treacherous. Her home was not wheelchair accessible, and using the stairs to its entrance became a daunting and dangerous task.
“I would have to rely on neighbors to help me get her down the stairs and into my car for doctor appointments,” she said. When neighbors were not around Phyllis would struggle by herself to move her mother safely into the car.
Phyllis and her mother lived in their homes for many years as it underwent several renovations and repairs;many of those repairs are still in progress. They are still repairing damages from Hurricane Irma. With their budget stretched, they were not able to afford the additional cost of a wheelchair ramp.
Reaching out to ElderSource for help, Phyllis received financial assistance from the Senior to Senior Fund in order to have a ramp built. Although construction was delayed due to the pandemic, Phyllis remained in good spirits. The new ramp provides Phyllis with the ability to safely transport her mother in and out of the home.
“I knew that the pandemic would delay things, but I remained hopeful,” she said. “Throughout the whole process everyone at ElderSource has been kind and patient. Even the contractors were courteous and professional. This ramp is a dream. I’m able to back my car up to the end of the ramp and safely load my mom into the car.”
Meet Ms. Norma. During Hurricane Irma in 2017, Ms. Norma a widow caring for her disabled adult daughter, experienced damage to both her fence and porch roof. The fence was torn away, while the porch roof started leaking. She also lost all her food due to an electricity outage. Because ElderSource was able to tap into Disaster Recovery Funds, her fence was fixed and peace of mind was restored. Also, Ms. Norma was referred to the Small Business Administration (SBA) where she received a loan which was able to cover the roof repairs, along with food cards to cover grocery needs for her and her daughter. Ms. Norma. is very thankful for our help in restoring her yard and fence.
We also have video testimonials featured on our YouTube page. View a sample of our videos below and subscribe to our channel for future success stories.