Senior Connections ensures seniors have the basics

group of senior citizens in a meeting

As Americans age, they require more and more services, driving up the requests for assistance from organizations like Senior Connections—The Capital Area Agency on Aging.

“Our agency is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life for older adults, caregivers, and individuals with disabilities in Central Virginia,” said Christopher Leighten, director of communications and outreach. “Our mission focuses on promoting independence, fostering health and well-being, and improving access to essential services.’

The Richmond-based agency provides essential services like home-delivered meals, transportation, and activities to reduce social isolation. In 2022, Senior Connections provided more than 181,031 meals, 9,400 rides, 27,609 hours of respite support, and more.

“Senior Connections plays a crucial role in Central Virginia by addressing the evolving needs of older adults and people with disabilities,” Leighten said. “This is particularly important as the population ages and the demand for specialized support increases.”

Publix Charities’ donation is being used to enhance meal delivery, transportation services, caregiver support initiatives, and wellness programming. “This donation significantly aids in extending our reach and improving the quality of our services. It allows us to meet the growing demands and continue providing essential support to our community,” Leighten said.

Without community support, the organization would not have the breadth and range it does. “Community recognition and support are vital to the availability of resources we are able to provide,” Leighten said.

The agency is grateful to Publix Charities. “Their support is a testament to the community’s commitment to the well-being of its older residents, caregivers, and those with disabilities,” Leighten said. “Publix Charities’ contribution is making a real difference in the lives of many, and we can’t thank them enough.”

The agency’s services both help recipients maintain their independence and contribute to the overall health and cohesion of the community. “By providing resources like nutrition programs and caregiver support, we alleviate strain on local healthcare systems and social services. It also fosters a community culture that values and supports its older members, recognizing their contributions and ensuring their well-being,” Leighten explained.

Many people would go without basic necessities if Senior Connections didn’t exist. “Without Senior Connections, many older adults, caregivers, and individuals with disabilities would lack critical support and advocacy in our community. This would lead to increased isolation, strain on social services and healthcare systems, and a potentially greater negative perspective on aging in society,” Leighton said.