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United Seniors of Athens County

seniorsAge is nothing but a number

Foundation fund for local senior citizens center helps clients stay healthy, active

There are more than 7,000 senior citizens currently living in Athens. Many of these individuals are faced with issues such as lack of health care, mobility problems, transportation difficulties and a shortage of social interactions. That’s where the United Seniors of Athens County steps in.

Founded in 1980, United Seniors of Athens County (USAC) is a private, nonprofit, multi-purpose service provider for senior citizens ages 60 and older living in Athens County. USAC statistics show that they help more than 1,000 seniors per year, 60 percent of whom fall into a low-income bracket

“The free membership and activities allow seniors to maintain the dignity and independence that they deserve,” said Mike Turner, executive director.

The organization offers many services for local seniors, including adult day care, transportation, health fairs, blood pressure clinics, an on-site, registered nurse and information on health care changes. The health assessments offered through the organization provide health screenings to more than 150 seniors annually who are financially unable to see physicians as they should.

“The most important thing that we can do is to provide preventative care and wellness opportunities for seniors,” Turner said.

The activities offered through the organization are not only for socialization but wellness on multiple skill levels. Activities such as card games, line dancing and chair volleyball increase productivity and keep clients sharp both physically and mentally.

One activity in particular is quite popular around the facility. “Walking Around the World” allows individuals to gain exercise while walking on a padded, heated/air conditioned track. Each lap is recorded and counted toward the grand total. In the past six years, 731 seniors have “walked around the world” three times, which equals 77,000 miles. The goal is to reach 1 million laps by the end of 2008, Turner said.

One way the United Seniors of Athens County will be able to continue offering these services in the upcoming years is through a recently opened endowment fund with the Nelsonville-based Foundation for Appalachian Ohio. This fund will help secure the future of the organization and encourage company growth and allows donors to contribute gifts that can be held until they are needed in the future. The hope is to provide a future support system that will allow for the continuing assistance that the organization offers, Turner said.

“The Foundation for Appalachian Ohio gives us a vehicle to start developing a legacy for future seniors, with their help we will be able to offer these services well into the future,” Turner said.

Donate Now to the United Seniors of Athens County Fund at the Foundation for Appalachian Ohio, noting the Fund in the designation box!