The Russell Mercier Senior Center is a multi-purpose facility. It is a community resource for information on aging as well as a provider of and conduit to other services available to older adults, including support services for caregivers. The Russell Mercier Senior Center has been designated by the North Central Area Agency on Aging as a Community Focal Point for Aging Services, signifying that the center provides a comprehensive delivery of services essential for maintaining the health, independence, and well-being of older adults.
The Russell Mercier Senior Center is excited and pleased to be reopening with a combination of some socially distanced in-person programming, outdoor programming where possible, and some hybrid programming. The programs will be rolled out in a manner that allows for us to do everything as safely as possible. See page 4 for what we have scheduled, for now and upcoming programs.
Seniors have been deemed to be the most at-risk population for severe illness with COVID. Additionally certain medical conditions can pose a risk. As you know, Senior Center attendees are coming from multiple households with various household configurations, vaccination statuses, exposure statuses, risk statuses, etc. According to the CDC, transmission risk in group settings is higher and likely increases with the number of unvaccinated people in attendance, presenting a higher risk of COVID and variant transmission among participants.
Naturally, getting vaccinated is a personal choice. The Chatham Health District strongly encourages everyone to be vaccinated, however, there will be no requirement to be vaccinated or to reveal your vaccination status in order to attend any senior center programming, however, we do ask that you comply with the following CDC recommendations:
- Unvaccinated people should wear masks at outdoor and indoor gatherings that include other unvaccinated people or who have an unvaccinated household member. With the probability of programs including both vaccinated and unvaccinated people, mask wearing will be required by all
- While fully vaccinated people can participate in outdoor activities and recreation without a mask, everyone should keep wearing masks at crowded outdoor events and venues. As mentioned above, with the varying risk of Senior Center attendees, we will err on the side of caution and require mask wearing at all outdoor programming
- Masks continue to be recommended for everyone at indoor public places. At the Senior Center wearing will be required by all.
At present, it will be necessary to make reservations in advance for all programs. Again, in order to keep everyone safe, properly fitting masks fully covering both the nose and mouth must be worn at all times, and social distancing will be maintained. Additionally, no food or drink will be allowed. We hope, as I’m sure you do, that in the very near future we will be able to ease up on these restrictions.
When entering the Senior Center, you’ll find social distancing markings and hand sanitizer in various strategic locations. The hardest part of getting to see you again will be to not be able to greet you with a hug!
We were fortunate enough to have received some CARES Act funding through the state and purchased two new pieces of exercise equipment – a hybrid recumbent bike and an elliptical! We still have our treadmill and various pieces of hydraulic-resistance equipment (CURVES equipment) plus we added a TV to our fitness room. In order to keep everyone safe, you will have to sign up in advance, and there will be a limit of 2 people at a time in the room. If coming together from different households, it is highly recommended both parties be vaccinated.
Contingent upon grant funding, we hope to purchase new indoor tables that will help to ensure social distancing and to purchase outdoor furnishings that will allow us to expand outdoor programming.
Walmart Shopping Trip There will be a trip to Walmart and Aldi’s in North Windham on Friday, May 28th at 10:00am. Seating is limited and everyone is required to wear masks. Additional shopping trips to Walmart and other local locations forthcoming, please stay tuned. To sign-up for this trip, please call 860-228-1700.
Walking Group Starting Wednesday, May 5th we will be joining the Colchester Senior Center for a weekly walking group that will meet at the Airline Trail on Rte 85 (near Juliano Pools & old Rte 85 Lumber). The group will meet at 10:00am. Please wear proper footwear. Pre-registration is required, and masks are required. To register please call the Senior Center at 860-228-1700. This program is free.
Exercise Equipment Room Now Open The Exercise Equipment room at the Senior Center is open for use by reservation only. There will be 30 minute appointments from 10:00am – 1:00pm Monday – Thursday with 15 minutes between appointments for cleaning. Only two per people per time slot and if coming together from different households it is highly recommended that you are both vaccinated. We now have two new pieces of cardio equipment a new elliptical machine and a Teeter (a recumbent cross-trainer). Masks will be required and you will need to check-in. To reserve a time please call 860-228-1700.
CHATHAM HEALTH DISTRICT VACCINATION INFORMATION
Are you eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine in Connecticut but having difficulty finding an appointment?
We occasionally have a few doses available at the end of our vaccination clinics.
If you would like to be added to our call down list for those extra doses, please complete our survey by clicking here.
Call Down List
If you are eligible, you can also request access to VAMS here:
Energy Assistance Winter Heating Program
The Senior Center is taking applications for the CT Energy Assistance Program (CEAP). The Connecticut Energy Assistance Program is designed to help offset the winter heating costs for a household’s primary heating source. If the household’s primary heating costs are included in rent, the household may also apply for assistance. Benefits are available to households with incomes up to sixty percent of the state median income
**A liquid assets test is an additional basic eligibility requirement. **
Liquid assets include: checking, savings, CD’s, stocks/shares, bonds, annuities, certificates of deposit and individual retirement accounts. Individual Retirement Accounts are considered to be liquid assets if the accounts are in the name of a household member who is 59-and-one-half years old or more. The purpose of the liquid assets test is to try to ensure that winter heating assistance dollars go to households most in need; that is, to people without the financial means to heat their home.
Benefits are available to households with incomes up to sixty percent of the state median income
|Household Size – includes homeowners and renters paying separately for heat, and renters whose heat is included in rent, so long as more than 30% of gross income is paid towards rent.|
For homeowners, the first $15,000 in liquid assets, and for other households, the first $12,000 in liquid assets, is disregarded. Any amount over that limit, when added to the annual gross income must be below the income guidelines.
Due to the current COVID-19 crisis all applications for energy assistance will be completed over the phone. We will not have any in-person appointments. When you call the Senior Center, we will assess what documents you will need to provide us with and will set up a day and time for a telephone appointment approximately 14 days later. You will be mailed a list confirming what the necessary documents are and when your telephone appointment is. The documentation must be received prior to your phone appointment. They can either be mailed, faxed, emailed, or dropped off in a designated drop-off box at Senior Center. Questions Call the Senior Center at 860-228-1700.
RHAM MUSIC WINTER CONCERT PROGRAM – so you can see who’s playing the music and other info.
Previous month newsletters are available further down on the page.
Mobile Foodshare Truck – Tuesday, April 13th & 27th – 11:15am – 11:45am
1 Main St, Hebron, CT 06248, USA (Corner of Rt. 66 & Rt. 85) Parking Lot of the Big Red Barn. Enter off of Rte 85 just past the intersection with Rte. 66 headed north towards Manchester
Congregate Meals from CRT Available for Pick-up – 11:30am-12:15pm. Starting Monday, September 14th the Russell Mercier Senior Center will be offering frozen congregate meals from CRT for pick-up. On Mondays you’ll receive 4 frozen meals, sides, and snacks for a suggested donation of $12 ($3 per meal). There is no menu, but fish will not be served due to potential allergy issues. You MUST call and sign-up for each week’s meals by 3:00pm the on the Thursday prior. example for Monday, September 14th we need your RSVP by Thursday, September 10th at 3:00pm. This program is for any senior 60+ years or older (you do not have to be a resident of Hebron or Amston. it’s open to any senior). These meals are to be heated and consumed at home. Each person will need to complete a Form 5, but we can assist you in completing this form. To sign-up you can call 860-228-1700, EXT. 202 OR email firstname.lastname@example.org… Again, please not the first date for meal pick up is Monday, September 14th and must RSVP by Thursday, September 10th at 3:00pm. When you (or whomever is picking up the meals) MUST wear a mask and adhere to COVID guidelines. Meals will be distributed outside and can be curbside pick-up.
AHM CHOREs Program Re-starts
AHM Youth and Family Services CHOREs program is back after being temporarily closed due to COVID-19. For any senior already registered for the CHOREs Program can simply call the AHM office at 860-228-9488, leave a message and you will receive a return call.
The CHOREs Program is for seniors whose health and finances prevent them from completing yard work around their homes. There is no cost to seniors, but they must fill out an eligibility form to assure that grant guidelines that fund this program are followed. CHOREs is generously supported by the North Central Area Agency on Aging, AHM Youth and Family Services and local and civic and faith community contributions, as well as donations made by seniors using the program.
During this time work is limited to only outdoor yard work projects and social distancing compliance will be strictly adhered too. If you are interested in getting some help for your outdoor projects please call AHM at 860-228- 9488.
The July newsletter will not be mailed.
MINDFUL MEDITATION VIDEO #1 – I’ve done a mindful meditation class at the Senior Center for several years, but being closed due to the pandemic we haven’t been able to be together, so I am now going to be making these videos for you to enjoy. If you’ve never done it before, that’s ok, start today. Just get yourself in comfortable seated position, feet on the floor, hands in your lap and listen to the video. You can either watch the video, which is just a still shot of the trees in my backyard, or you can close your eyes and just listen. It’s just under 10 minutes. I hope you enjoy.
How to Use Zoom This PDF document was produced for AARP. If you’ve wanted to learn more about how to use ZOOM, the video meeting/chat format, here is some information. This was produced for AARP. Video Chat with Zoom.
Senior Planet Aging with attitude. Senior Planet harnesses technology to change the way we age. Our courses, programs, and activities help seniors learn new skills, save money, get in shape, and make new friends.
Senior Planet is about much more than just the latest gadgets and apps and websites. Those gadgets and apps and websites are just means to an end: enabling older adults and people of all ages to come together and find ways to learn, work, create, and thrive in today’s digital age.
Wherever you are in the world, you can subscribe to our newsletters and participate online.
Effective March 16, 2020 the Senior Center will be CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC until further notice:
1. All non-essential activities be suspended (exercise classes, social and recreational activities such as cards and games, bingo, arts and crafts, movies, choral group, massage/reflexology, health screenings, veterans coffee hours, book club, parties/celebrations, etc.) 2. Home delivered meals program would continue with the following precautions – volunteers will leave meals at the door of the recipients’ homes without having direct interaction between the volunteers and the recipients 3.All social services will continue to be provided (information and assistance, public benefits counseling, CHOICES counseling, etc.) employing appropriate social distancing and precautions 6. Dial-a-Ride will suspend group social trips, however, will continue to provide medical trips when deemed medically necessary.
To find a food pantry and other resources near you, call 2-1-1 or go to https://www.211ct.org/.
The North Central Area Agency on Aging – NCAAA is now providing a grocery delivery services coordinated directly through their office. Individuals age 60 can call them at 860-724-6443 ext. 268
Independence Unlimited Independence Unlimited (860-523-5021) is now providing grocery delivery and home delivered meals to disabled individuals under the age of 60. They also are taking the lead roll in evaluating any technological needs for elderly and disabled (i.e., tablets or other technological needs to stay socially connected). Elderly and disabled persons can contact them directly.
- Health Screenings & Fitness/Wellness Programs
- Recreational, Social, Educational & Community Service Programs
- Nutrition – No congregate meals being served until further notice
- Forms, Policies, & Helpful Links
- Municipal Agent for the Elderly
Russell Mercier Senior Center Phone (860) 228-1700 Fax (860) 228-4213 14 Stonecroft Drive Hebron, CT 06248
Hours: Monday – Thursday 8:00am – 4:30pm and Friday 8:00am – 1:00pm
Sharron Garrard – Senior Services Director / Municipal Agent for the Elderly (860) 228-1700 ext. 203 email – email@example.com
Tanya Coles-Dailey – Social Worker
(860) 228-1700 ext. 204 email – firstname.lastname@example.org
Mandy Roczniak – Program Coordinator (860) 228 – 1700 ext. 202 email email@example.com
Hebron Commission on Aging: Pamela Meliso, Chairperson
See Town “Boards & Commissions” on this website for a
complete listing of members.