By Mike Reese
This year we are observing the 40th anniversary of Clinchfield Senior Adult Center, which was established by a grant made possible by the federal Older Americans Act administered by the Tennessee Commission on Aging in 1975.
The center strives to fulfill its Mission Statement as a community focal point for senior services where adults 50 years and older come together for fellowship, to participate in programs, to engage in opportunities to promote dignity and personal growth, to improve and enrich their quality of life, to enhance their independence and to broaden their involvement within the community. We offer a wide array of services for members and non-members of Unicoi County. Two very important needs of our aging population in the county are transportation service and proper nutrition. The senior center plays a role by addressing these needs with the use of grant monies from the First Tennessee Area Agency on Aging and Disability.
The center contracts with the Northeast Tennessee Rural Transportation System (NetTrans) for transporting members from their residence to the senior center at no cost where they can participate in activities, walk to downtown areas, and travel to local shopping places for a small fee before being taken home.
The First Tennessee Human Resource Agency nutrition program administers the home-delivered meals program with preparation at their central kitchen in Johnson City. The lunch-time meals are shipped to eight counties, including Unicoi County, and picked up by volunteer drivers to be taken to the consumers.
A congregate meal is served at 11:30 a.m. Monday through Friday in the senior center dining room. The program allows anyone age 60 and older to reserve a meal for a suggested donation of $2.
To help fulfill our mission, CSAC is funded through federal and state grants from the Tennessee Commission on Aging and Disability, town of Erwin, Unicoi County, town of Unicoi, United Way of Unicoi County, grants, donations, and fundraising.
The senior center staff is currently assisting seniors with the Low Income Heating Assistance Program applications. Those persons who want to apply for energy assistance can pick up the forms at the senior center or Neighborhood Service Center. The earlier the forms are sent in, the more likely applicants will be accepted in the program to lower their energy costs.
Please note the upcoming programs and activities:
Friday, Oct. 30, 9:30 a.m. We will have Halloween refreshments and if you would like to donate drinks or any kind of finger foods, try to have them at the center before 9 a.m. Be sure to wear your Halloween costume.
Mondays, Nov. 2 through Dec. 7, 9:30 a.m. The Chronic Disease Self Management Program is a 6-session course for individuals or families impacted by a chronic disease. This free program will be provided by Extension Agent Rachel Bradshaw and Ashley Davies of the Unicoi County Health Department.
Thursday, Nov. 5 – Barter Theatre will present a murder mystery musical comedy, Curtains. We will leave the center at 11:15 a.m. and return around 5:15 p.m. Cost of ticket and transportation will be $42.
For additional information about any of our activities, please call the senior center at 743-5111 or visit our facility at 220 Union St. midway between Main Street and Elm Avenue any time between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.
By Mike Reese