Alexandria, VA – Senior Services of Alexandria’s (SSA) goal is to reach older adults in Alexandria from every neighborhood, including those whose native language is not English. Over the past several months, SSA has connected with local nonprofits serving the Spanish-speaking communities and is taking strides to connect with older adults.
Under the leadership of Margaret Shetler, SSA’s Director of Outreach, SSA is partnering with ALIVE! and Casa Chirilagua to meet older adults to provide information in Spanish on available programs and services. SSA has a presence at ALIVE!’s local food hub in the West End and will have a presence at the newly opened hub on Mt. Vernon Avenue. We provide clients with updated information, including updated COVID-19 guidance and the recent “Boost your Budget” initiative that offers a variety of ways for low-income seniors to save money.
At Casa Chirilagua, Spanish-speaking SSA staff provide information and fun programs like Bingo. The new monthly Bingo program allows older adults in the community to spend time with each other in a fun and simple way and connect to information and services. Bingo participants can meet with staff from SSA, Casa Chirilagua, or EduFuturo (a nonprofit that serves immigrant families) to get assistance. The Alexandria Library and the Virginia Cooperative Extension have also supported programming in Spanish, such as a Financial Education and Paper Flower workshop. SSA looks forward to more workshops soon.
Additionally, SSA expanded our Senior Ambassador program to include Spanish-speaking ambassadors. To regularly update those we have connected with, SSA has created a monthly newsletter in Spanish highlighting upcoming events and programs and other city or nonprofit services for older adults. The newsletter now goes out to over 30 people!
We are proud of our outreach efforts and look forward to seeing the momentum build as we reach out to other non-English-speaking groups in the city. If you want to learn more about SSA’s outreach programs, contact Margaret Shetler at [email protected].
Looking for Summer Volunteer Opportunities?
Check out Senior Services of Alexandria’s opportunities to deliver Meals on Wheels, Groceries to Go, or visit older adults in your community. We always need volunteers as people take vacations during the summer. To learn more about the various opportunities, visit SSA’s website at seniorservicesalex.org/volunteer. Thank you!