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New York awards $8.25 million grant to WNY dementia caregiver programs


Wed, Apr 13th 2022 05:15 pm

The Alzheimer’s Association Western New York Chapter will oversee a five-year, $8,250,000 grant from the New York State Department of Health to expand dementia caregiving initiatives across eight counties. The chapter will collaborate with Office for the Aging partners in Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Niagara, Orleans and Wyoming counties, and the Center for Elder Law and Justice (CELJ) on the Alzheimer’s disease caregiver support initiative (CSI), which will provide funds for support services for dementia caregivers.

Across New York, it is estimated more than 400,000 residents are living with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia, with approximately 560,000 people filling the role of caregiver, at least part-time. The association said, “Those numbers are expected to escalate substantially over the next 25 years, potentially crippling the health care system.

“At this time, Alzheimer’s disease cannot be prevented, slowed or cured, and current treatments for symptoms do not delay the inevitable progression of the disease and its relentless, often overwhelming challenges. Research has proven that providing care partners with an array of support services can ease the challenges of providing care, and enhance the quality of life for individuals living with Alzheimer’s disease and their caregivers. The goal of the CSI is to enable individuals living with dementia to remain in noninstitutional settings in their community as long as safely possible through the implementation of caregiver support programs designed to improve quality-of-life and decrease caregiver burden.”

Chapter Executive Director Jill Horner said, “We are grateful to once again be a recipient of this competitive grant so we can continue to provide care and support services across the Western New York region. Our outstanding partners in this effort are crucial to the association’s mission, and we are delighted that we’ve been able to expand our partnership to include aging services offices in all eight WNY counties, as well as CELJ. The wonderful staff at all of the offices for the aging allow us to reach those impacted by dementia in all communities, and our CELJ partnership ensures our constituents have access to vital financial and legal resources as they face the challenges of this progressive disease.”

Amanda Nobrega is the chapter’s senior director of programs. She said, “Together, the chapter and our partners will expand awareness and delivery of valuable support services and resources. This grand-funded partnership will also allow us to serve even more families facing dementia – with a focus on engaging our most vulnerable friends and neighbors whose access to quality care may be limited by barriers beyond their control.”

Caregivers will have greater access to no-cost support services across the region, including care consultations, support groups, respite services, safety strategies, legal services and educational programs.

About the CSI Partners

The CSI regional partnership will provide caregivers with comprehensive, wrap-around support from local professionals from these agencies:

The Alzheimer’s Association is the nation’s leading voluntary health organization for care, support and research of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. The elimination of the disease through advancements in research, providing and enhancing care and support for all impacted, and reducing the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health define the organization’s mission. The WNY Chapter is located at 6400 Sheridan Drive, Suite 320, Amherst. It offers a 24/7 helpline for services and support at 1-800-272-3900. The association also offers online resources, including secure sites for caregivers, training for professional care partners and information about local support services at www.alz.org/WNY.

The Center for Elder Law and Justice provides free civil legal services to seniors, people with disabilities and low-income populations in nine Western New York counties. Its mission is to use the legal system to ensure clients live independently and with dignity by protecting the essentials of life, such as housing, income, access to health care and protection from abuse. Their office is located in downtown Buffalo at 438 Main St., No. 1200, and can be reached at 716-853-3087.

The Allegany County Office for the Aging is located at 6085 NY-19 in Belmont and is reachable at 585-268-9390. The staff provides expert information and assistance to older individuals and their caregivers to maintain dignity, respect and independence. It is estimated that more than 9,000 people 60 years of age and over in Allegany County.

The Cattaraugus County Department of the Aging is located at 1 Leo Moss Drive in Olean and can be reached at 716-373-8032. The staff provides or assures the provision of needed services to county residents who are age 60 or older, and has coordinated with existing community services, planned, developed and, in some cases, administered needed programs, while also promoting new and better services for all individuals ages 60 or older across the county.

The Chautauqua County Office for Aging Services provides programs and services to seniors and their families to promote independence, optimal health and wellness in a safe and secure environment. The agency has three offices across the county:

Erie County Department of Senior Services promotes the well-being of all older adults through coordinated and cost-effective services that enhance their independence, dignity and quality of life. The office is located on the 13th floor at 95 Franklin St., Buffalo, and can be contacted at 716-858-8526.

The Genesee County Office for the Aging, located at 2 Bank St., Batavia, provides information, support and advocacy to residents 60 years of age and older, their caregivers and disabled persons of all ages. The aim is to promote their independence and improve their quality of life. The office can be reached at 585-343-1611.

The Niagara County Office for the Aging is located at 111 Main St., Suite 101, Lockport. The agency brings together the programs, services and supportive facilities that help the county’s 47,000 older adults maintain independence whenever possible. Established in 1973, the OFA coordinates community services as well as plans, develops and administers needed programs, and promotes new and better services for all those age 60 and over. The office can be reached at 716-438-4020.

The Orleans County Office for the Aging, at 14016 Route 31 West in Albion, offers a number of services: referral and assistance to senior citizens and their caregivers, home services including Meals on Wheels, case management, home care aides, outreach visits and home safety assessments. The office can be reached at 585-589-3191.

The Wyoming County Office for the Aging, at 8 Perry Ave., Warsaw, advocates on behalf of all older persons in the service area, identifies the needs of the elderly, and creates plans for meeting those needs. It administers a wide variety of federal, state, local and private funds which support the services provided. The office can be reached at 585-786-8833.

Additionally, each of the offices administer NY Connects, a resource for free information and assistance available to older adults, individuals with disabilities of any age, and their caregivers to help make informed decisions about long-term care options. It can be reached at 800-342-9871.

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