In recognition of National Senior Citizen’s Day on August 21, FISH OF SANCAP is honoring senior neighbors that visit their Walk-In Center and Food Pantry with extra kindness and special treats. The organization will also display positive contributions made by seniors at the Walk-In Center.
In 1988, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed National Senior Citizens Day to recognize seniors who have spent their lives contributing to society. By signing Proclamation 5847, he marked August 21 as the day seniors will be celebrated. As stated by President Reagan, “Throughout our history, older people have achieved much for our families, our communities, and our country. . . for all they have achieved throughout life and for all they continue to accomplish, we owe older citizens our thanks and a heartfelt salute. We can best demonstrate our gratitude and esteem by making sure that our communities are places in which older people can participate to the fullest and can find the encouragement, acceptance, assistance, and services they need to continue to lead lives of independence and dignity.”
FISH appreciates and celebrates seniors daily through their programs and services, many of which benefit the older population. Says Erika Broyles, Senior Services Director, “In honor of National Senior Citizen’s day, we want to show our elders that we appreciate and care about them, not just on Aug. 21, but throughout the year. Showing gratefulness for our elder population by acknowledging their dedication, services and accomplishments may perhaps the greatest gift we can give.”
FISH Senior Services provide essential help for essential needs. They are keenly focused on the unique issues and challenges pertaining to the everyday lives of seniors, including mobility, isolation and loneliness. Through FISH programs, it is their goal to feed both the physical and emotional needs of seniors to help them remain healthy, independent, engaged, and to age in place with dignity. FISH understands as the community demographic ages, needs change. The organization is committed to providing services for the aging demographic, including senior assessments, visitation, medical equipment loans, on and off-island transportation, friendly faces luncheon, hurricane preparedness resources, daily reassurance calls, home healthcare resources, emergency financial assistance, food pantry, smile boxes and more.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, “approximately 78 million people aged 65 and older will reside in America by 2035. This figure will surpass the number of the population under the age of 18 for the first time in the nation’s history”. Senior services are more important now than ever before, and FISH is here to help. In order to better serve the seniors of Sanibel and Captiva, FISH conducted a professional Senior Needs Assessment that surveyed a randomized 3,000 households with residents over 55 living on Sanibel and Captiva. The survey was a nationally benchmarked survey that gave insight to the quality of life and unmet needs for older adults living on the islands, producing statistically significant data for not only FISH to use but the community as a whole as they work to address those issues facing the aging population on the barrier islands.
If you are or know of a senior in need of resources, services or a friendly visit or call from a FISH volunteer, please reach out to Erika Broyles at FISH for assistance. For additional information on the FISH organization and their programs and services, please contact Maria Espinoza, Executive Director at 239-472-4775 or visit their website at www.fishofsancap.org.