Free Services for Orinda Seniors

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(Kathy Ishizu)
Lamorinda Village volunteer Jenny Parker and her daughter Brooke deliver groceries to an Orinda senior. 

    Are you a senior living in your own home and trying to remain independent? If so, did you know there are several wonderful service organizations which offer free support to non-driving seniors? Giving up the car keys is tough, but sometimes it’s the right decision for you and for the people with whom you share the road, but it does not mean giving up your independence. There are organizations that will do the driving for you, grocery shop for you and bring you hot meals. All of these services are free.
    Seniors Around Town (SAT) has been operating in Orinda since 2005. It offers the gift of a ride to seniors who are no longer driving. The SAT program offers ease of use, no cost to riders and door-to-door transportation to all eligible Orinda senior residents. Orinda volunteer drivers, using their own vehicles, provide rides to medical appointments, errands and social events in the Lamorinda, Berkeley and Walnut Creek areas, Monday through Friday, between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. This wonderful organization is supported by volunteers and donations. For more information about how to get rides, register to become a volunteer driver or donate for the cause, email seniorsaroundtownorinda@gmail.com or call 925.402.4506.
    Normally, Lamorinda Village is a member-based (nonprofit) organization which supports seniors with volunteer handymen, drivers, computer techs, etc. to help with specific issues. During this pandemic, it opened its shopping/pharmacy delivery service to all seniors in Lamorinda to help them shelter from the coronavirus.
    Though restrictions are relaxing to a degree for the rest of the community as counties meet various markers, 80% of deaths from COVID-19 strike those older than 65. This means minimizing contact with people is still a primary concern for older adults until there is a vaccine. To date, Lamorinda Village volunteers have shopped and made more than 1,200 deliveries. Along with delivering groceries, Lamorinda Village has partnered with Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) to connect non-driving seniors with trained volunteers to help transport them during potential evacuations. If you would like help with either of these services, contact Lamorinda Village at info@lamorindavillage.org or call 925.283.3500. Volunteers and donations are welcome.
    For more than 50 years, Meals on Wheels – Diablo Region has improved the lives of vulnerable seniors living in Contra Costa County by delivering nutritious meals and wrap-around services which allow seniors to remain in their homes, safely and with dignity. The organization’s original flagship program nourishes frail, socially isolated homebound seniors by delivering a hot meal every day. Recent reports recognize loneliness and social isolation as damaging health as much as smoking 15 cigarettes a day. This daily delivery serves as a wellness check to ensure the isolated senior has someone to talk to and stays safe. If you are housebound and would like meal delivery, or if you’d like to support this program and make the deliveries, contact Meals on Wheels – Diablo Region at 925.937.8311.
    We are lucky to live in an area which values and supports those aging in our community.

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