Steamboat Springs Older adults in Northwest Colorado interested in senior Pilates, yoga or even a workout boot camp may soon have greater access to such programs.
The Colorado Trust has awarded the Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association a four-year, $240,000 grant for the association's Aging Well Program in Routt and Moffat counties.
"The philosophy of the Aging Well Program is that a healthy senior benefits the community," said Dace Kramer, Aging Well coordinator for the VNA. "We create community partnerships to increase their level of community engagement so they don't get isolated as they get older."
The program combines existing home care and public health services with wellness and prevention programming, cross generation education and cultural activities.
The funding will be used to expand care to a greater number of seniors.
Kramer noted VNA staff work closely with primary care physicians to identify those patients in their practices who might benefit from wellness and prevention programs
"This funding is a breakthrough for our region," said Kramer, who noted the length of the grant enabled the VNA to better plan for future programs.
"We'll be sustainable over a long period of time," she said. "That's not typical with foundation grants. It provides us the flexibility and latitude to provide an expansion of services."
The grant is part of a $6.5 million Colorado Trust Healthy Aging Initiative to promote healthy lifestyles and overall wellness among seniors.
Ginger Harrell, project coordinator for the Colorado Trust, said the VNA's dedication to promoting senior independence was key to the association's grant approval. She said approximately 90 organizations applied for the 20 available grants.
"We try to look at each program as unique to its own communities," said Harrell. "Collaboration is the overall theme of the initiative, but we look at other things, such as home safety, and the VNA met all our criteria."
Kramer said the grant also would expand services to disabled seniors in the region and help build better community and business relationships with the association.
"The needs of many in our aging population are simply not being met," she said. "But these people have an abundance to offer the community."
Other VNA Aging Well programs include creative writing, painting, swimming and wellness clinics.
For more information, contact Kramer at (970) 871-7633 or e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.