Senior Center Director Releases Feb. News & Events, Tours Jail
Shown above (L-R) are Alfred Sherman, NSO Community Programs Coordinator Joe Canavan, Ellen Parent, Jo-An O'Rourke, Linda Drohan, Laura DeMattia (COA director, now retired), Rita Tetrault, Gail Milgram and new COA Director Carolyn Roycroft.
Jail TourThe Norfolk County Sheriffs Dept. recently hosted a group of seniors from Bellingham (shown in photo above) for a tour of the jail. They saw the facility and heard a presentation by two inmates who spoke candidly about their crimes as well as their efforts to change their lives. “It was our pleasure to host the group from Bellingham,” said Joe Canavan, the Community Programs Coordinator for the Norfolk County Sherriff’s Office.
February NewsSenior center director Carolyn Roycroft has released the following information for February. (Roycroft will be the subject of Ken Hamwey’s Municipal Spotlight in next month’s Bulletin.)
RMV Near Me
The Bellingham Council on Aging (COA) in partnership with the Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) offers an additional location, 40 Blackstone Street, at which older citizens can receive assistance processing routine Registry transactions online. On Friday, Feb. 3, 11 am—1 pm, residents can stop by or call ahead and meet with Assistant Director Lisa Mottola, who was trained by RMV staff and is now able to assist residents with conducting online transactions, as well as helping to locate important RMV forms, documents, and resources online. RMV transactions that can be processed at COA locations include renewing Massachusetts driver’s licenses online (if the resident is younger than 75) and renewing a motor vehicle registration, eliminating the need to visit the local RMV branch.
Supportive Day Program
The Friendship Club runs Monday through Friday 9am—3 pm. Members can participate from one to five days per week. The program is a fee-for-service program costing $35 per day; healthyful snacks and lunch are included. Enjoyment, conversation, and gentle exercise are part of every day. Prospective clients may visit the program on a trial basis for one day at no charge. If you are caring for someone who is frail, isoften on their own or has dementia or low vision, call us. Transportation is available at no additional cost for residents. Call us at 508-657-2711 with your questions.
EMHOP-Elder Mental Health Outreach Program
If you know someone struggling with anxiety or depression, or you have other similar concerns, we now have a program that provides outreach, assessment and evaluation services for residents, age 60 and older. Mental Health Coordinator Gail Bourassa will work with us to assist seniors and provide services or make referrals to an agency for continued treatment. The goal of the project is to help older adults get back to being able to participate in the community or the social activities they choose. In Bellingham, for more information or to make a referral, please call 508-657-2710 or 508-657-2708.
C.H.O.R.E. Handyman Service Available
This program provides minor repairs to your home by an honest, reliable and experienced handyman at a modest rate, or even no cost to you, depending on your gross income. You are asked to pay for the materials needed for your repair. Priority is given to low-income households and repairs that address safety and health concerns. We take care of routine household repairs and also the installation of new items such as carbon monoxide detectors, smoke detectors, or grab-bars in the bath area. For a flyer or to request service, call 508-966-0398. Sponsored by the Bellingham Council on Aging with formula grant funding from the State Office of Elder Affairs.
Need Help Paying for Heat?
If you are struggling to heat your home, know that help is available! Call the Bellingham Senior Center at 508-966-0398. We are the town’s intake site for the South Middlesex Opportunity Council Fuel Assistance Program for all ages. You may be eligible for fuel, electricity discounts, and weatherization programs. Intake for the program runs until the end of April.
There is also supplemental fuel assistance available through the town. Applications are now available at the Senior Center (40 Blackstone Street), Town Clerk’s Office (10 Mechanic Street), and the Community Development Office (2 Mechanic Street). For additional information call the Bellingham Community Development Office at 508-657-2890.
Sharps (needle) Disposal Options
For the convenience and safety of the community we offer two options for the disposal of sharps: You may use the large collection container stationed inside near the front door of the senior center at 40 Blackstone Street by placing your needles, syringes and sharps in a designated container marked with the universal biohazard warning symbol, or a sturdy container that is water and puncture proof such as coffee can, or smaller bleach or detergent bottle, and drop them off. We have 1 qt. sharps containers. Pick one up now for a $1 donation.
Upcoming ProgramsSelf-Defense for Women—Thursday, Feb. 16, at 11 am. Participants will learn tools to protect themselves, whether they are in a parking lot, walking through a mall, or alone in the movie theater. Cost for this program is $10 for seniors and $15 for non-seniors, thanks to a grant from the Harvard Pilgrim Health Foundation. Please sign up at the front desk or call 508-966-0398.
Blood Pressure Clinic with Nurse Trish—Monday, Feb. 6, at 8 am. The Bellingham Board of Health-sponsored clinic will be held at the Senior Center. No appointment needed.
Leap into Spring—Tuesday, Feb. 21, at 6 pm, Brian, from Brian’s Country Greenery, will offer a class on seasonal arrangements called “Leap into Spring.” The workshop materials cost $15. The first six people to sign up pay a reduced fee of $10 thanks to a grant from the Harvard Pilgrim Health Foundation. Brian generously donates his time & talent. Sign up at the front desk or call 508-966-0398.
Art That Anyone Can Paint—Wednesdays, Feb. 1 and 8 (painting: “Tenor Winter”) & Wednesdays, Feb. 15 and 22 (painting: “Through Window”) at 1pm. Darrell Crow is a self-taught, professional artist, author, art instructor. Class fee is $25 per painting; painting generally takes two sessions for completion. All painting supplies are provided. Please sign up in advance at the front desk or call 508-966-0398.
Wire Wrap Jewelry—Thursday, Feb. 9, 10-11:30 am. This class will teach you the basic techniques; learn how to make earrings, rings, and pins incorporating semiprecious stones into the designs. The first 10 people who sign up will pay a reduced fee of $15; additional participants will pay $25 for the class & materials, thanks to a grant from the Harvard Pilgrim Health Foundation. Sign up at the front desk or call 508-966-0398.