Certain issues and difficulties arise as we age. Weakened muscles, memory loss, increased medical risk, longer recovery periods, and shrinking social networks, among other things, may all take their toll. And if you are at a financial disadvantage, it can make things even more difficult to deal with.
Thankfully, there are plenty of programs and services available to help ensure older people live happy, healthy, and dignified lives. The Arkansas Association of Area Agencies on Aging (5A) is one of the organizations that help seniors access the services they need. These services improve their quality of life and ability to remain healthy. If you are looking for “senior services near me,” read on to learn more about the available benefits for seniors in your area.
Senior Services Near Me: Little Rock
Meals on Wheels
Nearly 9.5 million seniors are at risk of hunger in the United States. Over half of those individuals are food insecure or low food secure. Unfortunately, Arkansas is consistently ranked in the top five states for senior food insecurity. Many senior citizens, particularly those with financial problems, are at risk not only of isolation and mobility issues but also malnourishment—sometimes even starvation.
Senior centers and Meals on Wheels programs, among others, offer home-delivered meals across the state. For instance, almost every Area Agency on Aging in Arkansas offers some form of home-delivery meal service to help combat this problem.
If you are a senior who can drive or has access to transportation, you can receive hot lunches from your local senior centers. If you are homebound, you may qualify for home delivery. Both programs are offered at no cost to you and may include one or two hot meals per day, depending on availability and your location.
All meals are developed based on the dietary guidelines set by the Older Americans Act Nutrition Program. Depending on the resources in your area, your meals may also be tailored to medical or cultural needs. These may include vegetarian, kosher, halal, diabetic-friendly, and reduced-sodium. Contact your Area Agency on Aging to find out your available options.
In-Home Care/Personal Care
Senior resources in Arkansas are designed to keep seniors independent and living in their homes for as long as possible. Often, this is best achieved through part-time or full-time in-home care services for personal tasks and ADLs (activities of daily living). ADLs include activities such as housework, meal preparation, shopping, medication reminders, and personal hygiene.
Many seniors assume that in-home care is too expensive, but that is not always the case. There are many programs designed to make in-home care more accessible and affordable for seniors in Arkansas. Some services are provided at no cost, but there are also many programs to help fill the gap and provide at least partial in-home care services.
In-Home Care Senior Services Near Me
Many seniors are eligible for at least part-time in-home care through Medicaid. The VA also provides a set number of hours of in-home care for some veterans. Talk to your Agency about eligibility requirements and how to apply.
Senior citizens may attend local senior centers to participate in various programs funded and delivered by the community, including fitness classes, Bible studies, and grief support groups. Senior centers are also great places for hobbyists to gather for activities. These include activities such as quilting bees, book clubs, and crafting groups. Every senior center has its own schedule of events, so contact your Area Agency on Aging for more detailed information.
Senior centers can help improve a senior's quality of life by providing a safe environment to socialize with peers, while also engaging in fitness, art, and other stimulating activities. This prevents isolation, which is one of the most significant barriers to senior health and wellness. Lunch is also available at most senior centers, ensuring that seniors get the nutrients they need to keep them strong and healthy.
Some senior centers may also provide transportation to and from the senior center and to other locations, such as hospitals (non-emergency), grocery stores, shopping malls, and doctor's offices. These services are provided based on funding and availability. Check with your local senior center to learn more about the services offered in your area.
Contact your local Area Agency on Aging if you are unfamiliar with or overwhelmed by the services available for low-income seniors. Our Care Specialists are available to provide you with all the information and assistance you need to identify and apply for the services for which you are eligible.
Once you contact your Area Agency on Aging, you will be assigned a dedicated Care Specialist immediately. Their job is to help you create a comprehensive care plan. They will link you with the proper resources & assist you with the application process for any programs you may need. They will help you order any medical equipment you require, and—if needed—arrange for you to receive outside assistance from a community or federal program.
Find Senior Services Near You
Do you have any questions about what services local agencies provide for senior citizens? If so, contact the 5A or your Area Agency on Aging using the links below. We will be happy to direct you to the appropriate resources, then get you the help you need to live a happy, healthy life.
For more areas across Arkansas, check out this page on our site and select your region, county, or city.