Age Friendly South Portland, in partnership with the South Portland Department of Public Works, is once again offering its Sand Bucket Program for seniors this winter.
Like last season’s successful program that served more than 250 residents across the city, seniors and those with limited mobility can contact Public Works to receive a 5-gallon bucket of sand to use on slippery walkways around of their homes. Residents can call 207-767-7635 or email [email protected] to request a bucket and/or sand refill.
For residents who received a bucket of sand last winter, Age Friendly South Portland is asking that the buckets be reused, if possible, for this winter’s program to save costs. Buckets should be placed outside in a convenient location easily accessible to public works staff later this fall/before the first snowfall.
If you used the program last year, but do not intend to continue its services, please contact the Public Works Department to return your bucket.
To learn more about this service, including receiving a bucket and/or sand refill, call 207-767-7635 or email [email protected]
Volunteers needed for shoveling
It’s going to snow. It’s true, and we at Age Friendly South Portland need volunteers to help shovel the walks and mailboxes of older residents who can’t handle those shovels.
We started offering snow removal last year using volunteers. It was a great success and we now need more helpers to commit to a single walk or mailbox for one of our seniors. We get many calls from people wanting to join the snow digger list and hope you can put your arm up (with a shovel in hand) and help them out.
We ask each helper to work with a resident. Your work can help increase people’s safety and mobility, so consider helping us. For more information send an e-mail [email protected], call 207-799-6350 to speak with Sue Henderson, or call 207-799-8888 to speak with Maxine Beecher. We can help you register.
Help is available
When spring began, I felt euphoric watching the days lengthen and the leaves grow full and the flowers bloom. I could feel the summer would be endless. Yet now winter is coming very soon and I watch the squirrels very busy. Like other creatures in Maine, we are preparing too.
We can ask ourselves if we will have enough wood or how will we pay for heating, taxes, food and putting gas in the car?
The costs are staggering for many reasons, all worrisome, all without quick or easy solutions. In the meantime, I believe we should help each other. I believe that each of us has something to give to the other and exchanges have nothing to do with monetary value, value cares about each other.
Margaret Mead is said to have said that the first sign of civilization she ever found was the skeleton of a person with a broken and healed femur. She said it was an indication of human civilization because such a break would have meant death unless others helped the individual.
Mutual aid is a fundamental attribute of human society. Now is when we need each other. There is social, political, climatic and financial stress on top of the pandemic that we all need a helping hand with in one way or another. What each person needs and can give is rich in variation.
Older people have wisdom, skills and a story to tell that are vital for today’s world and for the future. It is also a gift to young people to let them give to others, older adults can benefit from their strength, knowledge and skills. We need each other. Young and old, we can help each other.
Older residents, who have paid years of taxes and helped build our city, who are now on fixed incomes and are being hit hard by rising prices, should feel comfortable asking for help. help with assistance programs for heating, food, transportation and tax costs.
During the pandemic businesses were able to ask for help, there were many programs to help many people. People on fixed incomes also need help to get through these periods. It’s the right and just thing to do. So please don’t be too shy or too proud or too stubborn to ask for help. You can call the South Portland Department of Social Services, 767-7617, to learn about income-based programs to help cover heating costs.
Age Friendly South Portland has told you and will tell you more about tax relief, transportation and food assistance. Please contact us; there’s a lot going on. Age Friendly South Portland is a group whose aim is to help senior citizens to age safely in place and your input is valued. If you are interested in working with Age Friendly South Portland, please give me a call at 799-6350.
Susan Henderson, secretary of Age Friendly South Portland. She can be reached at [email protected]rg.
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