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Cincinnati Area Senior Services

Archive for July, 2009

CASS Newsletter Summer 2009

July 23rd, 2009

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Claudia Harrod Joins CASS as Development Manager

July 1st, 2009

Claudia Harrod has joined CASS in the newly-created position of development manager. She will be responsible for developing the planned giving program for CASS, developing grants, working with individual donors and growing in-kind corporate contributions to the agency.

A long-time resident of Cincinnati, Claudia has an extensive background in working with local nonprofits. She is also active in the community and is a volunteer for Women Helping Women and the Madisonville Education and Assistance Council.

High School Students “Grow Old” at CASS Senior Center Mayerson Service-Learning Program Visits Over-the-Rhine Senior Center

July 1st, 2009

When you’re 15, you don’t think much – if at all – about getting older and what your life will be like when you reach your grandparents’ age. To a 15 year-old, getting older usually means a driver’s license, high school graduation and going off to college. This summer, students taking part in the Mayerson Foundation’s Service-Learning Program had the opportunity to “become old” and experience some of the challenges senior citizens encounter in every day living.

For the past 17 years, the Foundation has funded the Service-Learning Program to expose Greater Cincinnati teens to local social service agencies and encourage them to become involved in the community through volunteering and community service projects. Students from local high schools spend a week living in a college dorm, visiting and working in area social service agencies. “Preparation for community service activities is an important part of the Mayerson Service-Learning Program, commented Steve Elliot, director of the program.

On June 22, six students from Finneytown, Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy, Clark Montessori and Bishop Brossart high schools visited the Cincinnati Area Senior Services Over-the-Rhine Senior Center. Center Director Cheryl Ware showed the kids what it was like to “get old.” Clark Montessori student Riana Graham put on a pair of glasses to read a magazine article to the group. The lenses were coated with Vaseline, allowing Riana to experience blurry vision, much like that of an elderly woman with cataracts.

Bishop Brossart student Julia Stefan’s hands were wrapped with tape. Julia tried to open a milk carton, a jar of peanut butter and a pill bottle. She couldn’t do it. The “arthritis” in her hands made those simple tasks nearly impossible. Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy athlete Ben Stevens put dried split peas inside his shoes. One of the seniors wrapped his knees in Ace bandages. Ben tried to walk around the room and up a flight of stairs. He shuffled along, but not with the speed and agility of a teenager.

Other experiments simulated the loss of hearing and sense of smell that is common among senior citizens. In just a few hours, these students experienced what seniors experience every day, and they left understanding how difficult it can be for seniors to accomplish the basic tasks of everyday living. “Teachers should do these age simulation exercises with their students before undertaking any activity that involves seniors, such as a visit to a senior center,” advised Elliott.