ASI programs serve our community

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By Rose Chavez | PREVIEW Columnist

ASI serves adults 60-plus (38 percent of area population); 23 percent minorities (predominantly Latino).

An estimated 9 percent of those we serve deal with cognitive and/or physical disabilities.

A total of 7 percent of those age 60-plus live in poverty in our community; one in 10 experiences food insecurity.

One hundred percent of those we serve are geographically isolated in our rural community.

ASI programs serve our community

ASI provides the following services in the community.

Nutrition services:

We provide congregate dine-in meals, Meals on Wheels food delivery, supplemental nutrition-rich grocery bags and participation in the Archuleta County Nutrition Security and Health Equity Assessment.

We serve 3,700 meals per month: 2,100 meals per month to senior citizens and 1,600 meals per month serve low-income Head Start preschoolers.

Transportation services:

Meals on Wheels works with local volunteers to deliver hot meals to homebound seniors.

The Mobile Food Pantry Initiative partners with Archuleta County Mountain Express Transit, or MET (bus system), to deliver fresh and shelf-stable food throughout the community (primarily in town and many locations within Archuleta County).

Social connectedness services:

We provide dine-in meals, caregiver support, daily wellness checks and medical alert monitors, as well as on-site social activities like mahjong and bridge, and health educational programming.

Environment:

The Pagosa Senior Center is walkable/bikeable/has bus access from public housing.

We offer healthy, fresh and locally sourced food options.

We offer connections to community health resources.

Dec. 2 COVID-19 booster vaccine clinic

Please join us for a drop-in clinic performed by San Juan Basin Public Health on Dec. 2 from 10 a.m. to noon at the Senior Center, located in the Ross Aragon Community Center. Please call us at (970) 264-2167 to sign up for the booster so we know how many to plan on for the day of the event. 

Holiday arts and crafts fair 

ASI will be hosting our first annual holiday arts and crafts fair featuring local vendors in the Senior Center dining hall on Dec. 3 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. If you would like to participate as a vendor, please contact us at (505) 331-0448. Festive holiday snacks will be available for purchase. 

Holiday ornament craft

Do you want to learn how to make a beautiful and easy gift box for the holiday? The best part is that it is made from last year’s Christmas cards. Join us on Dec. 5 at 1:15 p.m. in the Senior Center dining hall to learn how to make this wonderful gift box. No art skills are needed, no experience required and all materials are provided for you. 

We will be cutting circles that have been traced on the cards and gluing them together in a special way. Our teacher will be Denise Fisk, who is a former elementary school art teacher from Iowa. Come join us for some holiday fun.

Text reservations

Text us at (970) 264-2167. The Community Cafe is now accepting text messaging for meal reservations, cancellations and/or communication of any kind. When texting, please include your name, phone number and the days you want a meal. If you are calling to cancel a reservation, please include your name, phone number and the days you want to cancel. 

Texting services are available for dining-in meal reservations, Grab-n-Go meals and Meals on Wheels recipients.

Mobile food pantry service available for seniors

The Senior Center would like to remind the community about our mobile food pantry services we provide in partnership with Archuleta County MET to seniors age 60 and older throughout most areas of Archuleta County. 

In order to participate in this program, community members must visit with Barbara Noriega at the Senior Center, located in the Community Center, to fill out an application to qualify for hot meal delivery service and/or the mobile pantry service. 

The application, called the dining assessment form, is also available on our website at the bottom of the Community Cafe page: http://www.psseniors.org/community-cafeacute.html. For more information, contact us at (970) 264-2167.

Mahjong

Mahjong is a 19th century Chinese tile-based game that is commonly played with four players. Each player receives 13 tiles with a goal to make matching sets and pairs (like poker). To win, a player must form four sets and one pair. Come to the Senior Center to learn or play every Tuesday at 1:15 p.m.

Medicare call by
appointment 

For anyone who needs help enrolling and navigating Medicare plans, we help with parts A, B and D. We can also help you with fraud concerns and troubleshooting any billing issues you may be having. By appointment only. Please call our Medicare line at (970) 264-0501, ext 4. 

Bridge 

The longest-played bridge game in Archuleta County takes place on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays at 1 p.m. Bridge is a four-player card game with partners sitting opposite each other around a table. It is a trick-taking card game using a standard 52-card deck. Come alone or bring a partner.

Hand and foot card game

Whether you are new to hand and foot or interested in learning, please join us most Thursdays at 1:15 p.m. at the Senior Center. Our next game is Nov. 17. 

This card game involves four rounds of playing until the final round is reached — some two to three hours later. Plan to stay and meet some new friends or catch up with those you have missed over the last couple of years. No experience is necessary, so come willing to learn.

Share your pictures 

Engaging pictures are needed from seniors and their families who live, work and play their best lives in Archuleta County. We are looking for pictures that convey people’s active lifestyles, families, culture and more. We would like to use these pictures in our grant applications, on social media and our website. Please email all pictures to rosa@psseniors.org.

Wingspan and new
programming 

ASI is looking to expand our programming options. Wingspan, a game for bird lovers, was donated to the Senior Center and is looking for a champion to help facilitate this engaging board game. Come learn more about this fun game or suggest other ideas to help us find some new and meaningful opportunities to connect over and have fun. Please call or text us at (970) 264-2167 to volunteer or for more information.

Volunteers needed

The Community Cafe at the Senior Center is requesting volunteers to help with greeting customers. Please call or text us at (970) 264-2167 to volunteer or for more information.

Board vacancies

The ASI Board of Directors has multiple vacant positions open. The terms are three years with an option to renew for an additional term. Potential candidates should be at least 55 years of age or older and must have a passion for adult and aging services.

Community Cafe menu

Thursday, Nov. 17 — New England clam chowder, oyster crackers, broccoli with almonds, salad, fruit and cake.

Friday, Nov. 18 — Pork chile adovada, Mexican rice, pinto beans, salad and fruit.

Monday,Nov. 21 — Beef tacos, refried beans, salad, and fruit.

Tuesday, Nov. 22 — Oven baked fried chicken, scallop potatoes, sweet corn with basil, salad, fruit and cake.

Wednesday, Nov. 23 — Turkey with gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, salad, fruit and mini pumpkin pie.

Thursday, Nov. 24 — Closed for Thanksgiving.

Friday, Nov. 25 — Closed for Thanksgiving.

Grab-N-Go meals

Grab-N-Go meals reservations and cancellations are required. Please call or text by 9 a.m. the morning of the day you want to pick up a meal. A suggested donation of $5 helps to sustain our program. No one will be turned away for their inability to donate. For ages 59 and younger, the cost is $10.50. Please call or text us at (970) 264-2167 to make a reservation.

Meals on Wheels

We deliver fresh Meals on Wheels five days a week (and provide frozen Meals on Wheels for weekends) to homebound Archuleta County residents. Call or text us at (970) 264-2167.

Requesting donations

ASI has an immediate monetary need to support ongoing operations and programming that provide critical services to some of the most vulnerable in Archuleta County. Please consider donating to Archuleta Seniors Inc. 

You may mail your donation to P.O. Box 3444, Pagosa Springs CO 81147 or please visit our website: http://www.psseniors.org/. Donation checks can be written to: Archuleta Seniors Inc. We are located at 451 Hot Springs Blvd. 

For more information about ASI, please visit http://www.psseniors.org/.