From the CEO...
As the calendar year comes to an end and we look forward to an exciting and engaging 2020 and a new decade of potential and opportunity, we are keenly aware of the upcoming 2020 census.
Once a decade, America comes together to count every person living in the United States. The first census was taken in 1790, as mandated by the Constitution of the United States. It counts our population and households, providing the basis for reapportioning congressional seats, redistricting, and distributing more than $675 billion in federal funds annually to support states, counties and communities’ vital programs — impacting housing, education, transportation, employment, health care and public policy.
By law, the U.S. government is required to count the number of people living in the United States every 10 years. Getting an accurate count is important because census numbers impact daily life in the United States in many ways. For example, census data are often used to determine how much federal funding is allocated for important projects and services that benefit local communities. The census also plays a vital role in our nation’s system of government by determining how many representatives will be sent to Congress from each state.
Because getting an accurate count is so important, the process is designed to be fast, easy, and safe. On average, it takes no more than 10 minutes to answer the questions on the census.
During the first census in 1790, census takers visited nearly every U.S. home to gather data.
In 2020, households will have the option of responding online, by mail, or by phone. The Census Bureau expects many households to complete the questionnaire online, using instructions received in the mail. These instructions will also include information about how to respond by phone. Some households will receive a printed questionnaire which they can mail, postage-free, back to the Census Bureau. A small percentage of households, primarily located in remote areas of the country, will be visited by a census taker who will help collect the necessary information to complete the form.
Most housing units in the United States that receive mail at their physical location will receive a letter by mail with instructions on how to complete the census questionnaire. Housing units include houses, apartments, cabins, and mobile homes— pretty much any place where people live in the United States. In areas where the majority of housing units do not have mail delivered to their physical location, census workers will leave questionnaire packages at every identified housing unit.
The census process also includes special provisions to count people who are homeless and those in other types of living quarters, such as college dorms, military barracks, ships, prisons, nursing homes, and homeless shelters.
The person in the housing unit who fills out the census questionnaire or talks to the census taker is known as Person 1. Typically, Person 1 is the owner/co-owner or renter/co-renter of the housing unit. Person 1 answers general questions about the housing unit, including the number of persons living there and whether the dwelling is rented or owned. Person 1 also provides the following information about each household member: Name; Relationship to person 1, Sex, Age, Date of Birth, Hispanic origin, Race. The census questionnaire asks for this information to ensure that each individual is only counted 1 time. By identifying the relationships between people in a household, census data enable us to recognize important trends in our society, such as: The number of people living with nonrelatives; whether young adults are living with their parents or moving in with roommates, and the number of households that include extended family members, such as in-laws or adult siblings. The information is used to determine funding for federal nutrition and education programs, housing programs, and other social services that provide benefits to many U.S. communities.
Census day is April 1, 2020. Counting an increasingly diverse and growing population and takes years of planning and development. The success of the census depends on the participation of every individual and has significant impacts on our community. Residents use the census to support community initiatives involving legislation, quality-of-life and consumer advocacy. Local government officials use the census to ensure public safety and plan new schools and hospitals. Businesses use Census Bureau data to decide where to build factories, offices and stores, and these create jobs. Real estate developers and city planners use the census to plan new homes and improve neighborhoods.
If you or someone you know requires assistance to complete the census questionnaire, please call the agency for a staff member to assist. Additional information can be found at www.census.gov
From all of us at the agency, our sincere best wishes for a joyful and hope-filled holiday season!
DISTINGUISHED CITIZEN OF THE YEAR AWARD
Congratulations to CCAAA Chief Executive Officer, Ms. Kathleen Gillespie, for being presented with the Distinguished Citizen of the Year Award at the Greater Clearfield Chamber of Commerce Annual Banquet! This award is given to "an individual whose achievements place them above their peers, is community minded, does not look for recognition, and has had major accomplishments within the past two years." Kathleen certainly is all this and more! Likewise, Kathleen was in good company during the banquet, with all the exceptional nominees and award recipients. Kudos to all and a big thank you to the Clearfield Chamber of Commerce!!! Way to go Kathleen!
Each year, across Pennsylvania and other states in the USA, Blizzard Boxes are packed and delivered to homebound Meals on Wheels recipients. Typically a combination of non-perishable foods, they are packaged and delivered at the onset of winter. Consumers are encouraged to store the meals in a safe place to use as a backup for stormy winter days when the Meals on Wheels staff may be unable to deliver a hot meal. On these days, consumers are called and reminded to use some of the food from their Blizzard Box. Boxes are replenished as they are used, depending on available supply.
On any given day, about 600 senior citizens in Clearfield County are served through the CCAAA’s Meals on Wheels & More program. Over the course of the winter, over 1000 different people will have been served Meals on Wheels & More. Each year, Blizzard Boxes are provided to every one of these meal recipients.
Since 2011, every Blizzard Box has contained the nutritional equivalent of three full meals which meet standards set by the Older Americans Act (1/3 of the recommended dietary allowance for adults over 55). Typically, they contain products like canned soup, Hormel Compleat meals, crackers, cookies, shelf-stable liquid milk, juices, tuna and peanut butter. Products are currently being analyzed, and we look forward to providing another round of quality, nutritious Blizzard Boxes to all Meals on Wheels & More consumers before our first snowfall.
Food items are purchased in bulk in order to obtain the best possible price. Although we have increased the food quantity from a two-meal box to a three-meal box, the cost to sponsor each three-meal box remains at $10.
While small variations of the concept may have existed in various areas of the country for years, the formal program actually began in Clearfield County in 1983 with the Clearfield Rotary Club and the CCAAA. As the program grew in subsequent years, the Curwensville and DuBois Rotary Clubs joined the effort, spreading the load of support for the program. Since several clubs participate, the Rotary Wheel is placed on the top label of the box along with the CCAAA logo. We also include the Wal-Mart logo on each label, since the local Wal-Mart Distribution Center has been instrumental in the box assembly and delivery for the past few years. Also, in 2015 funding from both the Clearfield and DuBois United Ways was granted for this program. We proudly display the United Way logo on each box and thank them again for their continued support of this vital program. Some of our newer sponsors include C&S Wholesale Grocers, Riverview Bank and Giant. We sincerely appreciate all the help and support they provide!
In the last decade, support has also poured in from family members, individuals, business partners, organizations, church groups, and service clubs of all kinds, making it possible to remain entirely a local effort without the use of federal or state funds for the 37th consecutive year.
We are excited to show case two new faces at CCAAA Centers for Active Living. On October 1, 2019, Donna Lingle and Millie Travis joined our staff as casual Center Managers. Our casuals help ensure uninterrupted service to our patrons when regular, part-time staff are absent. Work includes coordinating services and leading activities, encouraging socialization among participants, preparing for congregate meals, and cleaning and maintaining a safe facility.
Donna Lingle primarily serves in the Kylertown Center, although she may assist other locations as needed. Donna was a self-employed Daycare provider for a decade. She then worked for several years as a machine operator and quality checker at FCI USA. After FCI shut down, Donna attended the Clearfield County Career & Technology Center where she received her Diploma in Practical Nursing. Her most recent employment was as a nurse and caregiver with Interim Health Care. Donna is also active in the community and has served in various volunteer roles including church office worker, past Sunday school and Bible schoolteacher, past AARP tax facilitator, member of Hyde Fire Company for 30 years, Treasurer for Lawrence Township Fire Police for 29 years, and former Hemlock Girl Scout Leader.
Mildred “Millie” Travis substitutes at our Coalport Center. Millie was a Certified In-home Day Care Provider for several years. She then worked as a Certified Nurses Aid for Home Instead Senior Care. After retiring as a CNA, Millie’s most recent endeavor has been serving as a Real Relationship Facilitator for the Children’s Aid Society.
Millie is passionate about helping people set obtainable goals and coaching them to reach their highest potential. Millie’s prior experience also includes teaching others how to build relationships within the community, and promoting daily healthy eating habits and exercise programs. Millie participates in disaster relief efforts, and most recently was in North Carolina after Hurricane Dorian. You may also see Millie at our other centers, as she is currently training to become an instructor for some of the evidenced-based programs we offer.
24th ANNUAL ANNE S. THACIK CHARITY AUCTION A SUCCESS!
The community once again showed their support of the Area Agency on Aging and the older citizens of Clearfield County, at the 24th Annual Anne S. Thacik Charity Auction held on October 10, 2019, at the Knights of Columbus, Clearfield. The Friends of the Area Agency on Aging Auxiliary raised just over $26,000 to support Agency programs and services.
The Agency would like to thank everyone who was involved with this year’s auction. Each year, individuals, businesses, and organizations support our event by generously giving their time, talents, goods and services. Your continued support is greatly appreciated!
CAN I CHANGE MY ADVANTAGE PLAN AFTER DECEMBER 7?
Between January 1-March 31 each year, you can make these changes during the Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period:
If you’re in a Medicare Advantage Plan (with or without drug coverage), you can switch to another Medicare Advantage (with or with drug coverage)
You can drop your Medicare Advantage Plan and return to Original Medicare. You’ll also be able to join a Prescription Drug Plan.
During this period, you can’t:
Switch from Original Medicare to a Medicare Advantage Plan.
Join Medicare Prescription Drug Plan if you’re in Original Medicare.
Switch from one Medicare Prescription Drug Plan to another if you’re in Original Medicare.
You can only make one change during this period, and any changes you make will be effective the first month after the plan gets your request. If you are returning to Original Medicare and joining a drug plan, you don’t need to contact your Medicare Advantage Plan to disenroll. The disenrollment will happen automatically when you join the drug plan.
Note: If you enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan during your initial Enrollment Period, you can change to another Medicare Plan (with or without drug coverage) or go back to Original Medicare (with or without a drug plan) with the first 3 months you have Medicare
January 1-March 31 gives you a switch back opportunity to Original Medicare or to change an Advantage Plan depending which coverage works better for you.
To find out more about this special enrollment Contact the Clearfield Area Agency on Aging inc. APPRISE program at:
TREE OF STARS HOLIDAY APPEAL