top of page

ACS unveiling new programming to connect with seniors


Amherstburg Community Services (ACS) executive director Kathy DiBartolomeo meets with local seniors at last Thursday’s “Feast with Friends” luncheon. She also greets Betty Van Bekkum (right), who is a volunteer at the luncheons.
Amherstburg Community Services (ACS) executive director Kathy DiBartolomeo meets with local seniors at last Thursday’s “Feast with Friends” luncheon. She also greets Betty Van Bekkum (right), who is a volunteer at the luncheons.

 Amherstburg Community Services (ACS) is preparing to roll out new programs to assist seniors to go with the agency’s existing programming.


Connecting seniors with other seniors in the community as well as other generations is a priority for ACS this year, according to executive director Kathy DiBartolomeo. 


“This year, we have decided to focus on senior isolation and ways to address that,” said DiBartolomeo. “To do that, we will be introducing some new programs in addition to the programs we already have.”


One of the new programs ACS is working on is a “pen pal” program with a local school. Details are still being ironed out, but the program would see students and seniors exchange letters with each other.


“We just think this may help bridge the generation gap,” said DiBartolomeo.

By learning more about each other and asking questions, people from each generation can learn from each other, she added.


ACS currently offers a “Feast with Friends” program every other Thursday where seniors can pay for a lunch and get entertainment or activities, the non-profit agency is also developing a new “lunch and learn” program where seniors can get educated on various topics to help their daily lives. The plan would be to offer both programs.


Amherstburg Community Services also aims to work with local medical offices in Amherstburg, LaSalle and Harrow to display what programs ACS offers on television screens people can view while at the doctor.


DiBartolomeo said many seniors want to stay active and give back to their community, noting there are those who have difficulty leaving their homes. ACS offers programs throughout the week and are planning to deliver brochures to apartments so they know what is available. Seniors who can’t get out could have programs geared towards them so they feel included, she added, including having people call just to check in on them to see if they are OK.


With restrictions having loosened or dropped entirely after the COVID-19 pandemic, “there are so many more opportunities for seniors now. It’s a matter of informing them and encouraging them to come out.”Seniors “need to feel they have a purpose,” she added. By coming through the programs ACS already has, many have become friends and go to meals and shopping together.


“Seniors are facing so many obstacles,” said DiBartolomeo. “Our goal is to put seniors in touch with other seniors.”


ACS is also planning another volunteer recruitment fair in the spring. A final date hasn’t been finalized as of yet, but the goal is to have it sometime in April. 


Betty Van Bekkum is one of the volunteers as the 78-year-old comes out to the “Feast with Friends” events and helps serve coffee and tea.


“I like everyone,” said Van Bekkum. “I like the people.”


For more information on ACS and its programming, call 519-736-5471, visit www.amherstburg-cs.com or visit their office in the Amherstburg Community Hub at 320 Richmond St. 


By Ron Giofu


ACS unveiling new programming to connect with seniors

19 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Kommentare


bottom of page