Seniors living in San Bruno and San Carlos can benefit from the Assistance League of San Mateo’s Friendly Visiting Service. The League offers isolated elders short- and long-term visits with a trained volunteer. Requests for visits can come from the elder, a family member or friend, or a doctor, and can provide much needed companionship. The League also has a Heart-to-Heart Line that provides daily or frequent telephone calls to homebound individuals. If you are interested in services, or if you would like to volunteer for these programs, contact Tessie Caligeras at (650) 342-3882.
Senior Legal Services Project, part of Legal Aid of Marin, offers seniors living in Marin County assistance with powers of attorney for health and finance, as well as wills. Caregivers and other individuals may also receive help with financial planning for nursing home placement. Consultation with an attorney, at no charge, is available for seniors in various Marin locations. Contact Jan Baldwin at (415) 492-0230. If your needs cannot be met through this program, you may be referred to another legal assistance program.
HomeCARES Equipment Recyclers provides free medical equipment and assistive technology to help caregivers and their loved ones. Equipment such as standard wheelchairs, bedside commodes, canes and crutches are available upon request. There is a waiting list for specialty items such as nonstandard wheelchairs and transfer benches. HomeCARES is based in Berkeley and has pick up points in San Francisco and Marin County. They do not deliver. Contact (510) 251-2273 in Alameda County; (415) 388-8198 in Marin County; and (415) 487-5405 in San Francisco for more information.
Seniors in San Francisco who are looking for emotional support can obtain free services from the Senior Peer Counseling Program. This program trains volunteers 55 and older to help seniors cope with feelings of depression, isolation, illness and loss. Seniors can obtain services in their home or in a support group setting. Individual counseling may be offered in Spanish and Tagalog. For more information, please contact Judy Gustin, at (415) 386-6600 ext., 218. Seniors who are interested in becoming a peer counselor can also call to learn about training sessions.
The Traumatic Brain Injury and Spinal Cord Injury Project in San Jose offers services to individuals living with a brain injury and their families. The Project has created a TBI Peer Support Network of volunteers who offer monthly informational meetings, maintains an online TBI resource directory, and presents a quarterly education series to the community entitled “Brain Matters,” which covers a variety of TBI-related issues. Contact Richard Patterson at (408) 793-6428 for information on peer support services, or call (408) 793-6433 for general information and referrals.
Lavender Seniors of the East Bay offers LGBT residents of Alameda and Contra Costa County community support through several services and activities, including the Friendly Visitors Program and Telephone Support. Lavender Seniors also offers a monthly lunch in Oakland, a potluck in San Leandro, and a “Lunch and Talk About” program in Fremont. These community gatherings allow LGBT Seniors to enjoy meals in a safe and welcoming environment to discuss common interests and social issues. For more information call (510) 667-9655.
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