Hundreds of seniors came out from all across State Senator Roxanne Persaud’s District 19 and beyond on Thursday, September 8th to join in on the annual Senior Resource Day activities taking place in the spacious courtyard behind the District Office located at 1222 East 96th Street.
Over two dozen organizations were represented at tables arranged around the perimeter of the yard with representatives who spoke about their many services. Plentiful refreshments were served near the tented seating areas, and the stage area was set for speakers and dancers.
“I’m giving away the best thing in the world: money,” said Leah Solomon representing the Office of the State Comptroller. “There’s over $17 billion in unclaimed funds and it’s out there waiting for you guys to claim it.” The funds were monies from forgotten bank accounts, uncashed government checks, refunds never cashed and funds of that nature that were returned to the State.
The organizations provided information about ways to navigate Medicare, Medicaid, health insurance, home healthcare, retirement, services for the undocumented, caregiver programs, free legal services, health services for those who have experienced violence or are living with HIV/AIDS, immigration services, veterans’ services and more.
Information about Alzheimer’s, dementia, sickle cell disease, thalassemia, pain management, hospice care and how to live safe and healthy while aging in place was also available. Seniors learned about how to get the most up-to-date smoke alarms installed for free through the Red Cross/FDNY and other resources they might not have known about.
A representative from Con Edison said that she could help those who were on assistance learn about energy affordable programs and, if eligible, could help with back bills up to May 1st. A form was available for submission up to November 31st.
“President Biden has recently signed the Burn Pit Act, which was for anybody who experienced environmental exposures in the military,”
Lynn Johnson, a rep for VA NY Harbor Healthcare System, said. “You can now be able to apply for compensation from the U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs.”
“If you are walking at night, make sure that you put on something with a light color,” a representative from DOT Vision Zero said. You don’t have to look like a highlighter, but you can put something on your hat, bookbag or jacket at nighttime because drivers aren’t able to see you.”
There was plenty of free food and drinks, table swag, handouts and giveaways, including free hand massages at one of the tables. Seniors were as lively as the music and were dancing and eating popcorn, ices and lots of treats, including many servings of some of the 60 watermelons brought in that day. Everyone received a bag of food provided by The Campaign to End Hunger as they left the event.
Persaud told everyone to get as much information from the tables as possible. “Every table that is here, every person who is here at those tables, we brought them because these are services that are important to you,” she said. “We want to make sure that you can access these services and we want you to share the information.”