Home Instead Senior Care Network Launches Online Service to Help Keep Seniors Safe
One of the worst scenarios for families caring for someone living with Alzheimer’s disease is a loved one wandering or getting lost. It causes immediate panic and concern, and unfortunately happens all too often. In fact, nearly 50 percent of some of these family members have experienced a loved one with Alzheimer’s wandering or getting lost, according to a new survey conducted by Home Instead, Inc., franchisor of the Home Instead Senior Care® network. Of those, nearly one in five called the police for assistance. To help families keep their loved ones safe, the Home Instead Senior Care network has launched a free tool, the Missing Senior NetworkSM, now available in Sacramento.
Found at www.MissingSeniorNetwork.com, the platform enables family caregivers to alert a network of friends, family and businesses to be on the lookout for a missing senior. The service provides a way to alert the network of a missing senior via text or email. Families can also choose to post an alert to the Home Instead Remember for Alzheimer’s Facebook page, connected to 270,000 followers.
“These frightening occurrences lead families to call our office and ask for help,” said Buck Shaw, franchise owner of the Home Instead Senior Care office in Sacramento and surrounding counties. “This resource was created to help Sacramento area families understand the risk of wandering and have a tool that empowers them to quickly take action if a loved one living with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia wanders.”
The Missing Senior Network is part of Home Instead Senior Care network’s new Prevent WanderingSM program, which includes resources such as insight into what may trigger wandering events, steps families can take to help keep their loved ones safe, and tips on what to do if a wandering event occurs.
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, anyone living with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia is at risk of wandering.
“Wandering can happen at any time, and not just on foot ─ someone in a car or even a wheelchair could wander,” said Monica Moreno, director of Early Stage Initiatives for the Alzheimer’s Association. “A person may want to go back to a former job he or she had, even though that job may no longer exist. Or, someone may have a personal need that must be met. There’s always a purpose and intent. It’s just a matter of identifying the triggers.”
Family caregivers should be aware of the following common triggers that may cause someone with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia to wander:
“We understand the topic of wandering is something many families coping with Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia may avoid discussing,” said Shaw. “It’s important for families to understand the potential triggers for wandering and have a plan in place to help keep their loved ones safe.”
For additional tips and program resources, visit www.PreventWandering.com, or contact your local Home Instead Senior Care office serving the Greater Sacramento area to learn how family caregivers can help prevent and respond to wandering. You can find an office near you by visiting www.homeinstead.com/California.
To access the Missing Senior Network, visit www.MissingSeniorNetwork.com.
About Home Instead Senior Care
Founded in 1994 in Omaha, Nebraska, by Lori and Paul Hogan, the Home Instead Senior Care network provides personalized care, support and education to help enhance the lives of aging adults and their families. Today this network is the world's leading provider of in-home care services for seniors, with more than 1,000 independently owned and operated franchises that are estimated to annually provide more than 50 million hours of care throughout the United States and 12 other countries. Local Home Instead Senior Care offices employ approximately 65,000 CAREGiversSM worldwide who provide basic support services that enable seniors to live safely and comfortably in their own homes for as long as possible. The Home Instead Senior Care network strives to partner with each client and his or her family members to help meet that individual’s needs. Services span the care continuum from providing companionship and personal care to specialized Alzheimer’s care and hospice support. Also available are family caregiver education and support resources. At Home Instead Senior Care, it’s relationship before task, while striving to provide superior quality service.
SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - Breaking state contracting laws has once again caught-up with a Sacramento area offender who has a history of unlicensed contracting activity – he was caught for illegal contracting in a sting last year. The repeat offender was one of 13 cited in a sting last week in Gold River.
CSLB’s Statewide Investigative Fraud Team (SWIFT) coordinated the undercover operation in a single family home near Mather Airport on June 12-13. The Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office and Rancho Cordova Police Department were partners in the sting.
CSLB investigators contacted alleged unlicensed contractors to bid on home improvement projects like painting the exterior of the home, masonry, electrical, and pouring concrete.
A total of 13 showed-up at the sting house to give estimates. They offered bids between $930 for electrical and $12,000 for pouring concrete – well over the legal threshold for contracting without a license.
In California, it’s illegal to bid over $500 on contracting jobs for both labor and materials combined (Business and Professions Code (BPC) §7028(a)). A first conviction penalty could result in fines of up to $5,000 and/or by imprisonment in county jail for up to six months.
One of those cited is a repeat offender. Jacob Daniel Cobb was caught in a Roseville sting March 2018. He pled no contest and was sentenced to three years of probation. If charged, second offences include a fine of $5,000, twenty percent of the contract price, or twenty percent of the aggregated payments (whichever is greater) and up to 90 days in county jail (BPC §7028(c)).
“Our goal is for any suspect who qualifies for a contractor’s license to get one,” said CSLB Registrar David Fogt. “When they get caught a second time, they’re showing they’d rather put homeowners at risk than follow the law. That’s why it’s critical for consumers to check for a contractor’s license before hiring anyone to work in or around their homes.”
Consumers can get license info by running an “Instant License Check” on CSLB’s website. They can also get a list of licensed contractors in their area by using the “Find My Licensed Contractor” feature to search for licensed contractors by city or ZIP code.
Twelve suspects may face a second misdemeanor charge for illegal advertising. Licensed contractors must display their license number in all advertisements and unlicensed contractors must state in all ads that they do not have a license (BPC § 7027.1). The penalty for violating the advertising rules for unlicensed contractors is a fine of $700 to $1,000.
One of the suspects did not carry workers' compensation insurance policies to cover those working for them (Labor Code § 3700.5). This case resulted in a "stop order" (a legal demand to cease all employee labor at a jobsite), as the unlicensed individual brought his hired help with him to the home.
Additionally, one suspect may also be charged with asking for an excessive down payment. (BPC §7159.5 (a)(3)(b)). The legal limit for a down payment is 10 percent of the contract price or $1,000, whichever is less.
All suspects were ordered to appear on a future date at the Sacramento County Superior Court, 720 9th Street, Sacramento, CA 95814.
NOTE: All suspects are presumed innocent until their case is resolved.
For more information or a list of the offenders see www.cslb.ca.gov or www.CheckTheLicenseFirst.com
SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Rebuilding Together Sacramento will discuss simple safety improvements to help increase seniors’ mobility and safety in their homes, and discuss their Safe at Home program.
Falls in the home are a serious health issue that is often preventable with simple lifestyle and home updates. The Safe at Home program is available to those of any income level. Trained volunteers improve accessibility and safety with simple items that can make a big difference. There is a need for affordable housing, particularly for older adults and those with disabilities. Homes need retrofits that support aging in place and this is an ever-growing concern.
This service is essential to seniors in Sacramento because:
“‘Falls are the leading cause of fatal and nonfatal injuries among older persons,’ said Erik Listou, co-founder of the Living in Place Institute… ” Bliss, S. (Aug. 23, 2018). The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved from https://livinginplace.institute/images/wsj-3-pages.pdf;
“Aging in place has also been shown to have health and emotional benefits over institutional care… ” Evidence Matters (Fall 2013). Measuring the Costs and Savings of Aging in Place. Retrieved from https://www.huduser.gov/portal/periodicals/em/fall13/highlight2.html#title;
“Over three-fourths of professional remodelers undertake projects designed to allow homeowners to Age-in-Place... ” Emrath, Paul (May 8, 2019). Eye on Housing. Retrieved from http://eyeonhousing.org/2019/05/remodeling-to-age-in-place-remains-strong-still-mostly-for-older-homeowners/
Rebuilding Together Sacramento is seeking volunteers who want to improve the safety and independence of older adults and those with disabilities by installing safety items in their homes.
Rebuilding Together Sacramento (RTS) is a nonprofit organization that has been serving the Greater Sacramento area since 1991. RTS continues to expand its partnerships with others that are revitalizing neighborhoods, improving homes, preventing falls and reducing energy use.
More about the organization: http://rebuildingtogethersacramento.org/
SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Homelessness and housing instability forces families to make hard choices about the necessities of life and can make a significant impact on a family’s overall well-being. For families receiving reunification and family maintenance services through child welfare, Sacramento County is helping to address these housing needs with the Bringing Families Home housing program.
The goal of this program is to reduce the number of families experiencing homelessness, increase family reunification, and prevent foster care placements.
Bringing Families Home is a California Department of Social Services grant-funded program that began July 2017 and has already supported 87 families in need of housing services. Over the next year, the program will secure housing for a minimum of 100 Sacramento County families who are completing court-ordered services and working towards family reunification.
“Housing is a basic need and when parents are experiencing homelessness and housing instability, this need is often prioritized over the required services needed for reunification,” said Sacramento County Program Planner, Niku Mohanty-Campbell.
“Child Protective Services works to provide housing stability while also allowing parents to better engage in services and address the issues that brought them to the attention of child welfare. Bringing Families Home allows for more safe and timely reunification and can prevent future foster care placements, overall supporting better child welfare outcomes,” he stated.
To address the housing needs of Child Protective Services families, the Sacramento County Department of Child, Family and Adult Services has partnered with the County’s Department of Human Assistance along with the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency, and other organizations to provide families with an initial assessment, service and support to obtain housing, and short term case management once housing is located.
Families are referred to the Bringing Families Home program by their social worker. The program is voluntary, but participation in Family Reunification or family maintenance services is required for program eligibility. The program prioritizes families that are homeless, however, can serve those that are facing housing instability, which includes when a family is at imminent risk of losing their housing.
“Bringing Families Home works to address the barriers to obtaining and maintaining permanent housing for those who are homeless, at-risk of becoming homeless or are receiving Family Reunification or Family Maintenance services,” said Michelle Callejas, Sacramento County Director of Child, Family and Adult Services.
“Through this grant and partnership, we are able to help families find a house, pay up to a double deposit and provide families a rental subsidy for three months after they move in,” she added.
If your family or a family you know is receiving child welfare services and is interested in participating in the housing program, contact Sacramento County Program Planner, Niku Mohanty-Campbell or email CPSBFHHouseReferral@saccounty.net.
Bringing Families Home is one of several County programs helping families and individuals experiencing homelessness transition to permanent housing stability. Ongoing County programs include the County’s Flexible Supportive Re-Housing Program, the CalWORKS Housing Support Program as well as new programs, such as the Flexible Housing Pool (FHP), an $8 million re-housing program funded through the new State Homeless Emergency Aid Program.
Launching in May, FHP will help resolve homelessness for up to 600 households, including vulnerable seniors, those engaged with criminal justice, unsheltered individuals and families, and those staying in an emergency shelter.
For additional information on County homeless activities, visit Sacramento County’s Responding to Homelessness webpage.
Placer County will receive a $1 million grant from Sutter Health to help house its chronically homeless population under a grant agreement approved today by the Placer County Board of Supervisors.
The funds will be used to support Placer County’s Whole Person Care Pilot program, which is designed to better coordinate physical health, behavioral health and social services for high users of multiple care systems who have poor health outcomes - and to increase their access to housing and supportive services. The Sutter Health grant will support the development of permanent housing for program participants with the purchase of housing units and by offering rental subsidies.
“Ending homeless in Placer County continues to be a high priority, and we are committed to being innovative and creative in seeking solutions that benefit not only those facing homelessness but everyone in our community,” said Robert Weygandt, chairman of the Placer County Board of Supervisors. “By partnering with Sutter Health, we’ll secure additional resources to jumpstart our Whole Person Care Pilot and provide some of our most vulnerable residents the security they need to get back on their feet."
The Whole Person Care Pilot will serve up to 50 homeless people each year. With the grant, Placer expects to provide housing for between 15-20 people a year.
“Every day we see growing numbers of homeless in our region, and see the toll homelessness takes on individuals and our communities,” said Sutter Health Valley Area President James Conforti. “At Sutter Health, we are working to create a regional, data-driven response to chronic homelessness by working with government, businesses and service providers to support projects that offer low- and no-barrier housing options for the most vulnerable populations, like the Whole Person Care Pilot program."
The grant is part of a larger strategic initiative, “Getting to Zero,” being led by Sutter Health to align public, private and philanthropic resources in Placer, Sacramento and Yolo counties in support of a Housing First response to homelessness – a federal strategy that calls for low or-no-barrier access to permanent housing.
“As Sutter Health has met with local leaders and experts to explore best practices for addressing homelessness in our region, we’ve identified immediate opportunities for action and as a result have already begun to commit matching funds to support key elements that will be a critical part of our campaign,” Conforti explained. “We are having positive and productive discussions with elected officials throughout our region and look forward to engaging the entire community in this effort in 2017.”
The homeless are the invisible denizens of America's cities, says Dan Weber, president of the Association of Mature American Citizens. “But, the dirty little secret that has only come to light recently is the fact that the elderly are among the fastest growing populations living on the streets,” he reports.
The Department of Housing and Urban Development told Congress last year that there were more than 300,000 homeless Americans 50 years of age or more, 20% more than there were in 2007.
A recognized expert on the issue of the growing number of older individuals who are on the streets is University of Pennsylvania Professor Dennis P. Culhane. He says that in 1990 “the peak age of adults who were homeless was 30” and that today the peak age is 55.
Weber is calling on all candidates for election and re-election in November and those in the private sector to recognize the fact that more seniors are homeless than ever before and to take to heart the needs of “these hapless lost souls. Focus on their plight and let the truth be told, loud and clear. Everyone needs to pitch in if we are to solve this problem, which only grows bigger with each passing day.”
Some would blame the spike in homelessness among older Americans on the swiftly aging population. But, Weber says, it has more to do with the rising cost of health care and health insurance, the lagging economy, the impact of such diseases of old age as cancer and Alzheimer’s and, perhaps the most damaging cause of all, the lack of affordable housing.
“In fact, talk to any health provider who deals with the homeless and they will tell you that there has been a dramatic shift in recent years in the illnesses from which they suffer. It used to be that the homeless suffered mainly from drug abuse and mental illness. Nowadays they are more likely to have the chronic diseases of old age,” Weber notes.
Mel Martinez and Allyson Y. Schwartz are the co-chairs of the Bipartisan Policy Center Senior Health and Housing Task Force. Martinez is a former U.S. Senator from Florida and Schwartz is a former Congresswoman from Pennsylvania. They published an Opinion Article in U.S. News and World Report last month in which they concluded that “preventing and ending homelessness among older adults should become a major national priority in the United States. By setting goals to end homelessness; increasing available low-income senior housing; and by understanding that the challenge requires participation from public and private partners at all levels, we can and will find ways to ensure that all U.S. seniors have the shelter and security that they deserve.”
Meanwhile, Margot Kushel, professor of medicine at University of California, San Francisco, is an expert on the elderly who become homeless. She says that providing them with housing is the key to fixing the problem. “A lot of these people have been healthy their whole lives. But it doesn't take long for their health to plummet once they're homeless. Once someone is housed, depression often lifts, stress fades away, infections heal. It's instant.”
Says Weber, “everyone has his own set of priorities, but one thing we all have in common is that we are all growing older. It's one of the hardest things we will all do in this life and so we should have compassion for those who need our help.”
The Association of Mature American Citizens [www.amac.us] is a vibrant, vital senior advocacy organization that takes its marching orders from its members. We act and speak on their behalf, protecting their interests and offering a practical insight on how to best solve the problems they face today. Live long and make a difference by joining us today at www.amac.us/join-amac.
Regardless of political stripe or where you live, many Placer County residents cite homelessness as a major concern. Despite the good works of many churches, organizations and individuals addressing this issue, a singular comprehensive solution has not been developed countywide.
Last year PCF collaborated with many partners and held an open forum in Roseville to explore helping individuals who are experiencing homelessness in our county. The forum made clear the need for buy-in among all our communities, to address the causes and not just treat the symptoms. Involving all cities and towns, this work requires committed collaboration of local governments, non-profit service providers, private enterprise and the community as a whole.
Since then the Board of Directors and staff at Placer Community Foundation have participated in several workgroups and site visits with local leaders to learn how others in our state are serving people experiencing homelessness.
Local Nonprofits Working to Help the Homeless
While controversial among neighbors who have concerns about safety and property values, the County of Placer awarded a contract to Volunteers of America, which extends the temporary shelter started by Right Hand Auburn at the Dewitt Center for another year. Additionally, a new nonprofit called Placer Rescue Mission received a conditional use permit to explore the feasibility of developing a campus that would include services for the homeless as well as permanent housing on a ten-acre parcel near the Santucci Justice Center in Roseville.
These projects can take many years to develop and at considerable expense. In the meantime, Placer Community Foundation looked for ways to address our donors’ concerns, interests and care for our homeless population.
$35,000 Matching Grant Supports Critical Services to Our County’s Homeless
While the community considers how best to help those experiencing homelessness, we have collaborated with our generous donors to make a significant $35,000 matching grant to The Gathering Inn; an existing provider that has worked for many years in our community to help people out of homelessness. All gifts were pooled into the Foundation’s Community Needs Fund.
During a site visit, our donors learned how this organization provides homeless women, men and families with resources they need to become active members of our community. The Gathering Inn is attuned to the multitude of needs of their clients and is achieving great impact with the staff and comprehensive programming currently provided. They are changing people’s lives and require significant philanthropic investment.
Grant funds support the operations of the Gathering Inn; allowing for people struggling with homelessness to receive the following and more:
With good organizations like The Gathering Inn and caring churches providing many critical services, the countywide discussion of addressing the cause of homelessness in each individual continues. Having all providers working from one connected system and managing outcomes to each individual would be a significant step.
Strengthening our transitional, mental health, and substance abuse services while increasing longer-term affordable housing so that more stable living situations are fostered are key to positive results. This is all central to the remarkable conversation in our county right now. With a true community approach, Placer County can go a long way toward real solutions for homelessness.
We truly thank our donors for taking the time to understand this extremely complicated issue and supporting some of the most vulnerable in our community.