By DOUG CURLEE | La Mesa Courier
For some time now, the city of La Mesa has been positioning itself as a city concerned with the health, safety and general well-being of its senior citizens.
A city-sponsored event on Nov. 16 was another in a series of long-lasting efforts to provide that help — an effort that attracted a number of organizations to come tell people what kind of help is available if needed.
About 16 different organizations came together at the La Mesa Community Center, to be available for anyone who might be interested.
Eldercare, City Hope, Meals on Wheels, Oasis, Sharp Healthcare — the list went on.
Megan Howell, of the city staff, hoped attendance would be better than, frankly, it was.
“You always hope you’ll draw a crowd,” she said. “We’ll keep putting these on, and hope the word gets out more and more.”
Some people came to take advantage of the free hearing testing and blood pressure checks — things that are vital for seniors to keep an eye on.
Bill Eiffert, of Elderhelp, could chronicle a long list of the services available to seniors.
“They need to know that whatever they might need is available at places like this, whether from us or any of the other organizations, absolutely free of charge,” he said. “Transportation, home visits, daily welfare calls, the whole list at no charge at all.”
City Hope’s Bonnie Welch echoed that, and said, “We are available for any kind of problems that arise, not just for seniors, but anyone who finds themselves facing a situation they can’t handle. We have memorandums of understanding with everyone from school districts to cities and counties and senior citizens, where help of any kind is available, no questions asked. We’re privately funded with grants from foundations, and income from property we own.”
It’s a good thing indeed that there is so much available for people, if they only know about it and can take advantage of the resources.
The problem is making sure that more and more people know about those resources.
It’s a slow process, letting people know all that. But it’s a process the city is not about to give up on. That’s a good thing for everyone.
— Doug Curlee is a longtime San Diego reporter in both print and television. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.