Help Wanted: CHORE Program Aides

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Senior Citizens and the disabled living in Maine, Niles, New Trier, Evanston, or Northfield Townships are eligible for free services to help them maintain their independence. Currently, we have openings for responsible persons seeking additional income while assisting older seniors who find it more difficult to manage day-to-day living in their own residence.

Chore Aides are paid hourly to provide any of the following: light housekeeping duties, grocery shopping
assistance with light meal preparation, laundry and yard work. It’s also a way to be a
friend and companion to help overcome isolation and an advocate to encourage a healthier lifestyle.
The CHORE program is offered through the Center of Concern to further its mission to “provide
housing assistance, support services and counseling for seniors, disabled and others in need,
enabling them to live with dignity and independence.”

CHORE workers improve the daily lives of seniors who have made great contributions in
their lifetime and now require added assistance to safely remain in their homes. Hourly rate as of
5/1/2017 is $12.00.

To apply or inquire call our CHORE coordinator, Belinda at (847) 823-0453, email chore@centerofconcern.org
or click here to apply online.

Volunteer Appreciation Breakfast

Thank you
As a valued Center of Concern volunteer, please join us for our Volunteer Appreciation Breakfast.  As we acknowledge National Volunteer week, we would be honored to thank you personally for all your time and good work!
Time and Place:
Thursday, April 27, 2017
8:30 – 10:00 a.m.
Paula Hassell O’Connor Community Building
733 N. Prospect, Park Ridge
Your help in serving our local community deserves special recognition and our staff looks forward to honoring your contributions of time, talent, and energy.
Please email your RSVP to Carol or call her directly at 847-224-8009.
Thank you again for all you do!  See you on April 27th!
               
John McNabola                                         Carol Gonzalez
Executive Director                                     Volunteer Coordinator

Community Service Day – April 29th

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Center of Concern Community Service Day April 2017 logo

The Center of Concern announced plans to celebrate National Volunteer Week, a time dedicated to demonstrating to the nation that by working together we can meet challenges and accomplish goals.  The Center of Concern is planning to help homebound seniors on Saturday, April 29th with a Community Service Day by window washing, yard maintenance, and other tasks to help them maintain their independence.

Individuals, couples, families, groups of friends, student clubs, service organizations, businesses, companies, and organizations – all are welcome to volunteer. A continental breakfast, lunch, and volunteer t-shirt will be provided as well as the opportunity to give back to your community!

John McNabola, Executive Director of the Center of Concern said, “Our annual Service Day activity is a great opportunity to everyone in the community to come together and make the lives of our oldest generation stronger and more secure.”

 Day:  Saturday, April 29th, 2017

Time: 9:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

National Volunteer Week, April 23-29, 2017, is about taking action and encouraging individuals and their respective communities to be at the center of social change – discovering and demonstrating their collective power to make a difference.  National Volunteer Week was established in 1974 and has grown exponentially each year, with thousands of volunteer projects and special events scheduled throughout the week.

Click here to RSVP

Senior Companion Program Informational Sessions to be held in Park Ridge, Des Plaines, and Skokie

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Senior Companion Program Informational Sessions to be held in Park Ridge Des Plaines, and Skokie

Adults 55 and older residing in suburban Cook County can improve the lives of isolated seniors in their nearby communities and earn an income stipend. Senior Companion volunteers provide support and companionship to senior clients that may require additional assistance to continue living independently in their own homes. Senior Companion volunteers are matched with clients within their own communities who offer their assistance, companionship, and friendship.

If you are 55 years of age or older, enjoy working with seniors, and can commit to serving at least 15 hours per week in your community, please join us in learning more about this opportunity. Income-eligible volunteers receive an hourly, non-taxed stipend. All Senior Companion volunteers receive mileage reimbursement, pre-service and ongoing training sessions, and other benefits as funding allow.

The Center of Concern is hosting three informational sessions:

Tuesday, March 14, 2017, from 10:00 AM-12:00 PM at the Park Ridge Library

Tuesday, March 21, 2017, from 10:00 AM-12:00 PM at the Des Plaines Public library

Tuesday, March 28, 2017, from 10:00 AM-12:00 PM at the Skokie Public Library

To RSVP or learn more about the Center of Concern Senior Companion Program Informational Sessions please contact Mary O’Reilly at 847-242-8010 or moreilly@centerofconcern.org.

The program is funded by the Corporation for National and Community service. The Center of Concern is a non-profit social service agency providing services and housing solutions to seniors, the disabled and others in need, enabling them to live safely and independently.

Blarney Bash to kick off St. Patrick’s Celebrations- March 11

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On Saturday, March 11, 2017, the Center of Concern will host the annual Blarney Bash to kick off St. Patrick’s week festivities. The annual Bash will be held from 6:30 to 11:00 p.m., at Fountain Blue at 2300 Mannheim Road in Des Plaines. A light heart lives longest (so the Irish say), and so we’re having a party to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day and support the Center of Concern Concern.

This year’s event features the finest in Irish traditional music from America’s heartland – Chicago Reel and the famous Shannon Rovers Irish Pipe Band. Traditional Irish corned beef and cabbage, Dublin Freshly whipped Potatoes,  Dingle Green Garden Salad, Cork Assorted Rolls, and delicious Cheesecake will be served, as well as a cash bar featuring some great Irish Beers, wine, and cocktails (soda and water are free).  The popular “Shamrocks and Clovers” game, Pot O’ Gold – Split the Pot, Green Raffle, Live Painting, Live and Silent Auctions that include some great vacation destinations and more…..

If you “Table Up” you can “Ride in Style”.  With a table purchase, your name will be automatically entered into the Blarney Bash “Ride in Style” pick up and drop off drawing.  A limousine will drive you and your guests to and from your residence in Blarney Bash style.   All table purchase names (everyone in your party) will be added into the Blarney Bash “Ride in Style” draw and one name will be drawn on March 1st and you will be contacted so you can plan to attend Blarney Bash in style.

“We are looking forward to wearing our green on March 11th to celebrate the luck of the Irish – Center of Concern style”, said John McNabola, Executive Director of the Center of Concern.

For more information, purchase tickets click here.

Senior and Senior Freeze Exemption renewal applications deadline extended to March 1, 2017

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Cook County Assessor Joseph Berrios announced today that his office has extended the deadline for the Senior Citizen Exemption and Senior Freeze Exemption renewal applications for Tax Year 2016. Savings from these exemptions will appear as deductions on the 2017 Second Installment Property Tax Bills mailed this summer.  The extended application deadline is March 1, 2017.

The office of Cook County Assessor Joseph Berrios has mailed Senior and Senior Freeze Exemption renewal applications for Tax Year 2016. Savings from these exemptions will appear as deductions on the 2017 Second Installment Property Tax Bills mailed this summer.

The Senior Exemption application is part of a booklet sent to eligible seniors. The booklet also contains the separate, income-based Senior Freeze Exemption application.

“Seniors must remember that, under Illinois law, they must reapply annually for both the Senior and Senior Freeze Exemptions in order to continue to receive the deductions on their Second Installment Property Tax Bills,” Berrios said.

To qualify for the Senior Citizen Exemption for Tax Year 2016, the property owner must have:

  • been born prior to or in the year 1951
  • owned the property during 2016 or have a lease or contract for 2016 which makes them responsible for the real estate taxes
  • used the property as a principal place of residence in 2016

To qualify for the Senior Freeze Exemption for Tax Year 2016, taxpayers must have:

  • been born prior to or in the year 1951
  • a total household income of $55,000 or less for [income]Tax Year 2015
  • owned the property or had a legal, equitable or leasehold interest in the property on January 1, 2015 and January 1, 2016
  • used the property as a principal place of residence as of January 1, 2015 and January 1, 2016
  • been liable for the payment of 2015 and 2016 property taxes

“If you don’t qualify for the Senior Freeze Exemption because you exceed the income level, this does not mean you will not be eligible for the Senior Exemption,” Berrios explained. “The Senior Exemption has no income restrictions and I’m concerned that seniors might discard the entire booklet and not receive the Senior Exemption savings to which they are entitled.”

Seniors receiving the Senior Citizen Exemption automatically receive the Homeowner Exemption. Seniors receiving the Senior Freeze Exemption automatically receive both the Homeowner and Senior Citizen Exemptions.

Eligible seniors who have never applied for the Senior and/or Senior Freeze Exemptions in the past may visit the Assessor’s web site at www.cookcountyassessor.com and download an application or contact the Assessor’s Office at 312-443-7550 and request a form be mailed to them. Applications for the Homeowner Exemption are also available online. Applications for additional exemptions administered by the Assessor’s Office will be available within the next few weeks.

“Our office continues to reach out to Cook County seniors, hosting local community seminars to make them aware of the available exemptions and also help with the application process,” Berrios said. “We held a record number of outreaches in 2016 and will work this year to provide local services to an even greater number of seniors in order to ensure they are receiving as much exemption savings as possible.”

Imagine

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Imagine your parents or grandparents without family nearby to care for them. Imagine your parents or grandparents waking up every day, lonely and confused. Imagine having to give up your home of many years without the support and guidance needed to address challenges related to aging.
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“Barbara used to go to bed every night knowing that tomorrow will be the same as the day before. Her struggles of isolation and depression only deepened with the coming of every new day. She sensed a deep feeling of hopelessness with the loss of friends and family”. 
 “After his wife passed away and without children living nearby, Robert had difficulties keeping his home in order after exhausting his life savings with expensive nursing care bills.  As months passed, he dreaded waking up each day knowing he could not manage to live on his own at home”.

For hundreds of seniors like Barbara and Robert, the Center of Concern’s staff and volunteers bring confidence, hope and companionship to residents by offering housing solutions, counseling, and supportive services to help residents overcome hardships and remain in their homes with dignity and independence.  The Center of Concern imagines a brighter, stronger future for home-bound and lonely seniors by building stronger communities. But we can only continue our valuable programs through the generosity of people like you, who have been an integral part of our mission for nearly 40 years. Can I count on you? As a citizen of our community, you can provide the leadership and commitment necessary to help our most at-risk seniors remain in their homes and find expert help to overcome challenges related to aging. Tonight, when you close your eyes, imagine the love and concern you can provide seniors by giving during this holiday season.
With warm wishes for a blessed holiday season, 
John McNabola
Executive Director
Click here to support the Center of Concern’s 2016 Holiday Appeal.

Your Guide to All Things Electronics!

The Digital Connection – Your Guide to All Things Electronic!

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Personal one-on-one interaction in variety of technology topics such as computer, mobile device, and internet help answer your questions. If you have questions about settings up, or how to use your Electronic device come to “Your Guide to All Things Electronic”. The digital Connection will spark excitement and enthusiasm over an activity so beneficial for keeping pace with technology and maintaining a stronger connection with family and friends.

 

The Digital Connection is a partnership with the Park Ridge Rotary Club, the “Connecting for Good” program which helps students build leadership and communication skills as they introduce computer and social media technology to adults served by the Center of Concern. Maine township students and Boy Scouts pursuing Eagle Scout merit awards are active participants in this exciting intergenerational program.

 

The Digital Connection – “Your Guide to All Things Electronic” will be held at the Park Ridge library on December 27th from 9:30 am to 12:00 pm and January 8th from 12:30 pm to 3:00 pm. You can make reservations by calling Center: 847-823-0453, and walk-ins are also welcome.

The Center of Concern’s “Connecting for Good” program is funded in part by NobleCause and the Park Ridge Rotary Foundation.

Adopt-a-Senior on or before #GivingTuesday

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Adopt-a-Senior on or before #GivingTuesday, November 29 and spread some joy this holiday season with a gift of a Poinsettia, personally delivered by one of The Center of Concern’s trained volunteers. Now in its second year, this successful social services program lets you send a beautiful, iconic holiday plant to seniors the Center of Concern serves or your special senior, family member, friend or neighbor.  You’ll not only be brightening the life of a senior, but you’ll be supporting one of the Center’s valuable social services programs.

HOLIDAYS CAN BE A LONELY TIME: The holidays can be a lonely time for those who live alone or without family nearby, and this program goes a long way to brighten those lives and alleviate feelings of loneliness and isolation. Two-thirds of seniors live alone in suburban Maine Township. According to A.A.R.P., an increasing number of retired adults have few family members to provide companionship and care. Social contacts steadily decrease with retirement, loss of friends and family, heightened anxiety and lack of mobility. Regardless of the cause of a senior’s isolation, the consequences can be devastating.

GIVE A POINSETTIA AND SPREAD SOME JOY: Poinsettia gifts will be delivered to seniors living at home, in assisted living, rehabilitation, memory care or skilled nursing facilities during the week of December 5th. You can place orders any time during the month of November or on #Giving Tuesday, November 29th.  Plant  sizes vary between 4” and 4.5” and colors vary in hue within the holiday palette. You can order one or ten to spread some joy.  If a poinsettia just isn’t their cup of tea, there are a number of other generous options to brighten someone’s life this holiday season when you Adopt-a-Senior.

Click here to download the Adopt-a-Senior form or click here to Adopt your senior online.