LBISD ServingSeniors

Tuesday, January 2nd


Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Good morning and welcome to another edition of living veteran San Diego public service presentation of the and a count San Diego radio stations and arrogantly. Serving seniors is a local nonprofit that provides various in tactful programs and services to older adults. Living in poverty and serving seniors they believe that every person is worthy of respect. Indignity. Joining us this morning is serving seniors president and CEO Paul Downey. Chief administrative officer Melinda forced it also joining us at Jack in the Box foundation director Kathy caballos of this. Jack in the Box Foundation's support sir seniors through its volunteer program. Welcome Paul Belinda and Kathy preconceived theory I care pre to be here and happy holidays. Great to see you again Paul and Amylin and Kathy of pleasure meeting you and having you on the show as well today. I'm Paul let's start with some back and information you've been on the show several times but for anybody that doesn't know anything about serving seniors how about a little back and if. Well we do is we re really focused on helping seniors in poverty with a healthy fulfilling lives and so it's really. About keeping them independent. Because we know that if we're able to provide things like meals and housing and support services. We keep people in dependent which is what they wanna be keeps them healthy keeps them productive members of the community. And also helps overall keeping costs down on things like long term care so. It's it's really about the health and independence of ups of all our seniors. Most of whom are living in poverty. What is the admission and it serving seniors well our mission is to is helping seniors in poverty live healthy and fulfilling lives so. It's. But the thing a few important thing to note about our seniors is that the vast majority over 85%. Are living on less than 950 dollars month. Federal poverty level is a thousand dollars month so they're not even have the federal poverty level. They're looking at housing situations living in the same room occupancy hotels. Where their rents are seven to 750 dollars a month so for most of our folks there living on a 150. Meet B 200 dollars. For all of their living expenses after paying for their rent so. They're struggling you do the arithmetic on that it's maybe 57 dollars a day. To try to eat paid co pays for medications. By new pair of shoes. Doesn't leave much for anything else. We've that we've talked about this before that it it comes down to a matter of making that decision to enter the food and that's and then go to Dover. I think that showed traces of people have to make every day. And a lot of them on the first of the month if they don't have enough money to pay their rent they run the risk of and you know on the street. We also have a comprehensive program helping seniors who are homeless. Get them off the street transition them into permanent housing and the numbers out there are actually pretty frightening. Of homeless population in San Diego these numbers come from the regional task force on homeless. 21%. Are over the age of 55 and considered older adults. We can testify to that firsthand. Because overseen. Huge numbers on a daily basis coming into us looking for help so. Re able to have how I was 21 of them on a transitional basis but we've got multiples of that. On waiting lists trying to just get off the street and hopefully have better lives. I've seen DM. Homeless population just in general really increase here in San Diego going to Pepco park. In that area and then I was downtown and not too long ago again and I don't remember exactly where it was us a whole new area well a lot. That is just a lack of housing mean in San Diego. Are vacancy rate is less than 3%. So they are just are not units for at any price whether it's high end. Middle income and certainly for low and there's not enough housing so one of the challenges we have is we have homeless seniors who come into a transitional program. And we can't move them out they are there's there's there's literally no place suits to move them. To get a section eight voucher. Which allows you pay 13 of your income in rent for your low income. If they shall have been years in San Diego to get that voucher. And now because of the housing shortage. You have a voucher there's nobody easily even rent to you. So a lot of the homeless that perceive this as simply there is no affordable place for these folks to move. And living in San Diego will not cheap. No and and that's and that's and when we look at Britain's rents. The reserve survey that came out in and September. Showed that for a studio apartment in San Diego it's about 15100 dollar you know to better miss post 2000. And if your income is 900 to 950. When you can get your predicted ebitda it doesn't work and these these folks are just literally struggling and to survive on a daily basis and so that's for serving seniors comes and to provide that safety net even on that income to make sure that they are able to live healthy. And be able to basically to be able to survive. And hopefully have some. The sum a bit of a good life for me to be able to enjoy and get back to the community. And enjoy their life. And move that's very important as well even on the very low income. Now I'm not mistaken. The lady thinks is serving seniors has our national recognition. As a model for helping seniors remain healthy and independent. What's what's that like for the well well basically we do we actually has national. And we've had international we've we've actually had through the State Department has sent delegations. To look at our operations and we've had to do and I'm I do a lot of speaking around the country. On the model that we've created and that it's really comprehensive. Approach. What we do is we bring in a lot of collaborative partners so. For instance in our Gary and Mary west senior wellness center which is our flagship facility in downtown San Diego we have over 25 partners. And one of the things that we do it is when we built the building we overbuilt it. And we give away the space for free to other partners to come in like a sharp healthcare. Like older laws and advocacy and and and and others. To come in and provide service and the deal is they provide the service free from the client's perspective. They can still billed Medicare medi cal or grant or some other funding source but my client's perspective it's tree. And what they have to do is they have to collaborate. With us on all of our other programs and services and most importantly share their data. Because we are very results oriented. And so we're collecting data on everything we do and so this model of building space which is relatively cheap to do in comparison to the ongoing cost of having to fund. Services we give the space. They provide the services and we collaborate. And that's something that that we kind of moved away from. Regrettably I think in the human care. Field we get silos and and we don't talk to each other don't collaborating and so we emphasize. The collaboration. And I think that's what people find fascinating because. We're able to leverage over a million dollars a year in. Free services and from our perspective at least from our client's perspective where you are you located. Well our flagship facility is at fourth and beach downtown Gary and Mary west senior wellness center that we actually have nine facilities. Throughout San Diego so we earn far south as San Ysidro. We're in lemon grove will mesa Spring Valley Mira mesa city heights and we have to housing facilities. And second one downtown the Parker family senior residence and another one NCI's so. So we're we're kind of central south. San Diego by our our core is downtown which is where the ball good the very low income seniors it would. Now on talk about some your programs that you had a serving seniors a big part of what you do is you nutrition program providing meals yes yeah from them the meals are the core. Sort of this holiday season if you will sort of the Christmas tree. And the ornaments are the other programs and services that we hang on to the tree. But we we do about 600000. Meals a year two meals today breakfast and lunch. For all of our home down we deliver about 500 homebound seniors on a daily basis and operate. Our Cary Mary west senior wellness and 365. Days a year. Were literally one of only two or three. Senior centers in the country that operates. Every single day of the year. Now and in the meals that you provide where these these are at your various centers around county yes so we assume we we prepare them and we have a kitchen and our products are friendly senior residence. All the meals are prepared there and then delivered. To each of our sites and from there are delivered to again 500 people on a daily. On a daily basis and so we worked with dire dietitians and they recommend that if you're gonna get two meals breakfast and lunch are the two to get. But that obviously brings up that the question about what about dinner right and for most of these folks unfortunately. There isn't a dinner. Option. They are. We don't have the funding to provide the third meal and for most of them you'll see if you come to one of our congress senator so. Carve out a portion of food. Which may help with hunger. But it doesn't help when if nutrition and he's still only get into authors of your recommended daily balances of vitamins and and and nutrition. So it's and unfortunately there are there they're still not getting in the former shipment that they really need. What does set serving seniors consider to the senior. Sixty and that's and and and that's of that as of a bone of contention across the Specter of what is a few years because it's different who you talk to you doctor ARP they'll tell you fifty years right your years seen here. We sixty because we we do get some funding through view older Americans act which is federal funding and so they use sixty but. You can get early Social Security at 62 you can get Medicare at 65 and depending on when your born in you can get you're from your full Social Security. At 6566. Or 67. You have to mandatory start taking your withdrawals from here I hire a 69 and a half so. Little is all on board and then and then if you asked somebody who's 65 or seventy. I'm not saying. Now that Neman Nielsen tear at your Sanders a day. For anybody any senior what do you have to sign up how does or ABC news or use of you have to be sixty of course. But because of where we're located and and where we've we've sort of target are our outreach. I get most of Amare are very low income but theoretically. Be somebody you wealthy person could come and give them you know fears she. One. We've probably talked about a donation site in addition to happy meal. But but but by and large it's it's very low income. And the newest critically important. But equally important is the socialization. Because most of these folks are living alone in a single room occupancy hotel. Which is less than a hundred square feet usually shared bathroom and not much social interaction and so coming to the center. They get the food but they also interact with their friends and interact with this Melinda staff. Who are able to injures intervene and look for issues and problems and try to solve. So all things before it becomes a crisis. Just shows how alluded to you know we shared nearly 600000 meals a year. But in addition to doubt we really look at all of the needs of our seniors. So housing again is another huge need on so we have 350. Units of supportive housing. And east village in in city high each. In are actually really excited T breaking ground in Pomona on in March 2018. We're gonna be building eighteen other senior housing building with 62 he met. And we're also aggressively pursuing other housing options. So in addition to our nutrition services are housing in her social services. We also want to engage the seniors in this process so one of our more popular programs is actually our civic engagement program with our seniors. And through this program to seniors can help advocates for the needs of themselves in the community. So that we have them going into affected officials offices. Identifying transportation challenges within the group. I'm in really being an active participating initiative process. In addition to that app exceed peace we also have a huge volunteer component with our seniors actively involved. So this media are seniors recruiting other seats other senior volunteers to help. You know clean up after our nutrition services. Or helping to provide outreach to seniors on the streets so again it's a really robust group of services that were able to provide. As far as housing goes you have permanent housing and transitional housing. We do Yasser through our transitional housing. Seniors we have got 21 units on after Sara Francis which is he single remark occupancy building located downtown. And our social workers worked closely with the seniors for over three to four months we are during that time period. We cover the rent for the teen your father in this program so that they're able to save up money. And also meet with on each week to develop a plan leopard that helping them at their finances helping them get enrolled in Medicare medi cal. In the goal of that program is after these 9220. Days the seniors are evils she successfully transitioned into permanent housing. An and had a somebody get get on that list to get into these sure yeah absolutely and so we can haven't intake process. And there is an income requirements. On but really the number one factor is to make sure that the teen years are committed. To falling this program and she will meeting with the social workers each week. So we have currently about 35 teen years on our waiting list. On. Now tell us a little bit about your round one of your other services that you provide that health and wellness services sure absolutely. So we have on your seeing staff without our while the senator and that our housing sidestep meet with the seniors they do eat with honey comprehensive. Geriatric assessment that identifies all of the needs of the seniors. And that may be helping down navigate their medical discharge plans. Helping down a teen medications helping down really have a better understanding of some of their chronic health conditions. And really holding your hand and walking down through. Every piece of the health navigation process and have another program touting his greatest pitcher you pet pals program. Yes although that's something that we developed because what was happening is seniors were taking their food. And giving it to their pets. And while we love our pets we were concerned that the seniors weren't Guinean. There are there proper nutrition so. What we've done is is is we've partnered. With pause and they bring in. Pet food to distribute to our seniors both dog and cat food so that the change which can eat their food and make sure that they take care of their pets because. For for many of them that disease that's family that is all right I mean they have and it's really really important. To them that they that they take care of their path so. That's something that it has been is very popular program that you come down that they were distributing you'll see. He large crowd of the folks coming for the food. That's right yeah I like that program in all programs that effort fantastic of course. We know what pets do for people as far as morale and I mean and and I and we're very pet friendly. We. Are sinners. Companion animals to it to come in. And event I think that helps keep people calm it gives them. That physical affection and many of them don't pan out for me don't have families and there's nobody giving them hunger. Showing affection and have him. An animal that does that it is the easiest critically important to someone's overall mental well right. Kathy tells little bit about Jack in the Box foundation you are the director correct. And scary yes I'm the director Jack in the Box foundation. And our foundation primarily focus on helping youth in our community through organizations. Like every ninety matter is and I'm no kid hungry because it's big sisters. Organizations that are geared to help break the cycle of poverty with children but we also recognize just how very vulnerable than seniors are in our community. We really want to support and help that sector. We've been partnering with serving seniors for many many years now. And that we. Have a very vibrant. Volunteer program through Jack in the Box. Antara please get out and get involved in the community and serving seniors is one of the most popular organizations that are on planes like to get involved when it. We go and volunteer we try to ship for once a month. And we could down to. Having volunteered their myself and I know that Paula you have. You started out as a volunteer. With serving seniors so it's. It truly makes an impact when you're volunteering for an organization you really get to know it. In a very very emotional and packed away. And being able to connect the senior us and being able to receive a smiled in appreciation on the face when you serve them food. Knowing just how Christian they aren't makes all the difference in the world how many years have you been volunteering yourself. I've been volunteering I thin the Jack in the Box foundation for 26 years. Our volunteer program really started full force that ten years ago we volunteer for so many organizations and San Diego. We're proud to say that we we really to a lot of Giffords volunteer opportunities. Serving seniors meals on wheels both dedicated to helping seniors. We also do an on site mentoring program with big Brothers big sisters. Where we have our employees. Our big sister isn't. Big Brother is and we bring kids and from our community. Andrew reed I and the big sister for that program and I actually love it it's as a way to connect with somebody and have an ongoing relationship and hoping than knowing that I am that I am making impact and somebody's life. We do beach cleanups. We do programs with promises to kids we recently just supported PYMC giving tree. With. I gift drive at our company and we also get fracking event for them and we helped delivered that gets to. Date supported more than 600 kids in our community who needed gifts for Christmas so we were able to help. That's where it's great to know that Jack in the Box foundation is out there in more ways than one. I help you helping the community it's terrific especially during the holidays happy home. And I figure I mean how much we appreciate check a box and all of our volunteers because that's something that's really important to us is the dignity. Having our our seniors served. Serving the meals so every see every lunch hour. Everybody is always serve you don't have to lineup and that interaction with the volunteers. Is equally important to me that meals and the other socialization because you have outside people professionals coming here and sometimes sobering and their kids. And having that interaction and really can make a huge difference in somebody who's who's very lonely. And looking for some sort of connection right somebody and in her and I Tyler that is as Kathy set I started. As a volunteer. Work in this City Hall. I'm 31 years ago and now. They volunteered and I dated for seven years every month. We would go down and answers. Meals and that I think I got more out of it and the people that really. Educated me about things like poverty and an understanding the struggles of people go through. Right here in San Diego where every day an involuntary it's such a gratifying thing it doesn't matter where you volunteering. It's also really great for corporations I just wanna throw at a challenge to corporation because. If you have a group of employees were volunteering together it is a great team building event just getting together and knowing that you're doing something good. It really brings your team closer together. And it's it is really rewarding form please I get constant feedback from our play is thanking us for thank you Jack in the Box for making a possible. Now the holidays are upon us it is Christmas Eve morning and you have here. Your holiday meal drive. We absolutely and so people are hopefully. You know thinking indignant good holiday cheer on Christmas Eve. But we need to raise money and that sense to us that the bottom line and we're hoping people will. We have been there before the end of the year if they wanna get in that donation maybe help from my friend taxes this year. But we're raising money for meals that is the core two dollars and fifty cents is what it takes to defeat the senior. And on the west say it is if you can afford to make a donation of two dollars and fifty cents for that person who gets the meal that's a really big deal. By hopefully people would consider making multiples would be very grateful and other seniors who receive the meals would be extraordinarily grateful. The easiest way to do it now you wanna get it before it by the end of years to go to our website www. Serving seniors dot work. There's a big donate now button. I'd also point out this have been a good year in the stock market so if you have some stock maybe that's appreciated. If you can get it to us by Thursday. Still possible to get stock gift process. By the end of the year and and that's a really good things if you bought it low it's now high you actually get the deduction for the full amount of the stock value. Without having any capital gains to you to do so it's a great way to to make a donation. Would really encourage folks to to please consider being. Being being generous these these folks really need me to help. And solemn good Christmas spirit. Now out of the holiday mile drive. They're donating it to web site is there a separate place for batters and Justin in the general invitation when there was one of the options if you don't want this for me also they concerns for the civic engagement and Melinda talked about or for housing. You know anything that if they have a particular program that they want to donate to we are extraordinarily grateful. And this is as most of securities event if if people want to donate in January February march in the rest of the months we're happy to take the donations so is it isn't like we have to. You know stop on December 31 two but you know we're obviously have a week ago before the end of the year. Do you wanna encourage people to you to please be kind. Us and it and it's important to note that you're you're donating to reputable organization. One that you can trust. Absolutely and that's and that's something that we're we're very proud of for them to you know we have an impeccable record all of our financial information is on our website so if you wanna look at our most recent audit if you look at 990 form. Which is foreign refile with the IRS. We actually have more than a decade's worth of official information is there so we really believe in being transparent. About things unfortunately all the financial information is good and and all that but. If you're gonna make a donation to charity. I think it's always important to kind of kick the tires. Make sure that this reputable. Do your homework look at the financial information ask questions. Go for tour. We're always happy to attitude to which we're we're happy to have people come down and just wander around and talk to our clients and see what we we do that right now there unfortunately there are some. No questions for peerless folks out there to take advantage of people being good holiday cheer. And even now just you know be careful if you don't know the organization. Do your homework. And from reputable organizations like surfing seniors were happy to. A comedy and anyway that you would like to be accommodated to you to make sure you comfortable making the gift. Now we've we've talked about volunteers. Volunteers would act Mona. Pretty much every nonprofit. Outside of serving the seniors their meals wonder what other volunteer opportunities oil there's all sorts of other things that people can do. We were very much into providing classes so somebody has a particular skill and few in her room do watercolors or ceramic or. Picture size. We've got opportunities to come into classes. We have a walking group that is always looking for people to help lead walks. We have a singing group that somebody. Is musically inclined wants to come in and work with them. We have a cyber cafe. Where actually we've used high school students to volunteers here. But we're perhaps we'll have more volunteers to me and to work with folks on how to use computer how to set up email do you Skype. Search the web or for information and also a lot of organizations come in and we'll do parties. Around politics. So all. Do that someone wanted to come in. Probably a little late now but if you wanna do a New Year's Eve party during the day. We could we can do about it or Valentine's Day. Where they come in and do something special with some awesome games and cookies and music dances. I mean just the list goes on and on and were open to any creativity that somebody's house I mean again. Because again them for more socialization more activities. And the more we can get people out of there 9200 square foot room. And able to to enjoy their life despite being in poverty the better. And again your your senior senators not just for you sit around and and in chatter whatever already eat it you got all kinds of activities if it is it's is bustling place. Right when you when you come. And that and M is the design of it is is specifically that way I mean. One of the things when we built particularly the wellness center you know I told our architectures and I don't want this to be your grandmothers seniors and displacing grandma senior senator. We all have I think probably a negative image of what that looks like. And this is the opposite of it's bright it's light it's clean. And there is a hustle and bustle and revive. That I think almost feels more like like a college campus. Then and than anything else. In just add to that you know I know we've spoken a lot about our law in the center but we do you have the nine other sites throughout teenie oh Connie. So if coming down in volunteering at one of our. Southern CD Kos site for one of our site Tony east colony we have all sorts of opportunities whether it's one time thing. Or an ongoing thing. And again on anyone who's interested can go to our website www. Serving seniors dot org to see what opportunities are available. And it and again to make a donation either for the holly mile drive from one you programs it just go to your website and is donate link go to our web site. And they can they can do donate now or there's phone numbers on the website if somebody wants to give us a call. And do it that way. Also if you if you wanna write a check as long as it's postmarked by December 31. The gift will count for for this tax year so you can obviously always write a check. And again probably the easiest is it's all on the website is see is our address so that would be oh and other way to do it okay and now you're on social media. From social media FaceBook Twitter. Is to Graham. All of normal sources of Canada. Love to have people. Follow us like us and all the stuff you have to be on social media. Great Paulo's pleasure. Pleasure seeing you and having you on the show and Amylin and Kathy pleasure meeting the both view and having you on the show as well and Kathy thank you for all you do at the Jack in the Box foundation. And and Melinda and and Paul all the cheated with does serving seniors you you're making a difference in so many lives thanks for having us here in Merry Christmas and happy new year and you think you. That concludes another addition of living veteran San Diego the opinions expressed on living better San Diego do not necessarily reflect the opinions and views of the staff and management of the head count San Diego radio stations. Episodes of living better San Diego are available on the station's website. Join me next week will will be talking about the importance of local businesses giving back to our communities. Until then I'm Gary late have a great week and Merry Christmas.