Baltimore County Now
Barbara Korenblit, Chief, Division of Individual and Family Services
Baltimore County Department of Aging
The services available to support older adults and people with disabilities are rapidly changing. Until recently, the only place for seniors to receive long-term care was in a nursing home. Today, seniors have many choices and are receiving help in their homes, retirement communities, and assisted living facilities, to name a few. Similarly, people of all ages with disabilities were once housed in institutions that provided few opportunities for growth. Today, people with disabilities have more choices about where they live, work and play.
Professionals who work with seniors and people with disabilities are now providing “person-centered counseling” and “consumer-directed services” to help people understand their options and develop a plan tailored to meet their needs. Rather than “doing for” people and concentrating on their problems, professionals are supporting them to identify their strengths and take charge of their lives. What an empowering change!
How do professionals – social workers, nurses, case managers and counselors – prepare for this transformation? What knowledge and skills are needed to help people make the most of new opportunities and resources?
To learn the answers to these questions and many more, we invite you to our 11th Annual Advocacy Conference, “Celebrating Independence: Tools for Encouraging Self-Sufficiency for Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities,” on November 7 from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Hunt Valley Inn in Cockeysville. This dynamic workshop, presented by the Baltimore County Consortium for Professional Education in the Field of Aging, offers cutting-edge presentations on topics that will equip professionals for the future, including “Trauma-Informed Care,” “Sexuality for All: Rights to Intimate Relationships in Any Care Setting,” “Employment and Economic Self-Sufficiency,” and “How to Empower Your Clients and Yourself.”
For those who need a reminder to take care of themselves, we are also offering “Stress Relief for the Professional.” Take a welcome break and learn how to renew your energy and spirit!
The conference is currently accepting registrations. The $65 fee includes continental breakfast and lunch, as well as CEU’s for Social Workers and Nurses. Call 410-887-4200 or click here for the registration form and more information.
Jill Hall, Division Chief for Senior Centers
Baltimore County Department of Aging
These days, you read it in headlines all the time — “60 is the new 40” or “70 is the new 50” — but what exactly does this mean? It means that people are leading healthier lives and living longer as a result. The average life expectancy in the United States has grown by more than 10 years since 1950, and some researchers claim that babies born in the year 2000 and after will live past the age of 100.
According to the National Institutes of Health, seniors can improve their health greatly and maintain their independence by staying physically active and exercising regularly.
To help Baltimore County’s senior citizens start and maintain a regular fitness routine, the Department of Aging has a diversified fitness and exercise program geared specifically to adults age 60 and older. Seniors who join this program can use any of our 13 Senior Fitness Centers, work with a certified personal trainer, and take specialized fitness classes to help them “Get Ready! Get Set! Get Fit!” and live longer, healthier and more independently.
In addition to year-round fitness, seniors can participate in special events. For instance, next month, walkers and runners of all ages can kick off Active Aging Week by participating in the Baltimore County Department of Aging’s seventh annual Get Ready! Get Set! Get Fit! 5K Run/Walk — 1M Walk on Sunday, September 22, 2013, at CCBC Essex.
The Get Ready! Get Set! Get Fit! 5K Run/Walk is an intergenerational event with something for everyone. Serious runners will compete for awards in gender and age categories, as well as for placement in the top-three men and women overall. Participants who are out to enjoy the morning at a more relaxed pace will be eligible for door prizes. Everyone receives a free t-shirt, water on the course and post-race refreshments for a low cost of only $15 for senior citizens and youth and $30 for adults. Adults pay only $25 if they register before August 16.
Occurring on the first day of Active Aging Week, as well as on Fall Prevention Day, the 5K Run/Walk is a perfect way to get out and show how important exercise is for people of all ages.
Screenings will be provided by the Baltimore County Fall Prevention Coalition, and face-painting will be available to keep younger participants entertained during the awards ceremony. There will also be music by Ellis Woodward. Visit www.getreadygetsetgetfit5k.com or your local BCDA senior center for more details.
Get Ready! Get Set! Get Fit! 5K Run/Walk — 1M Walk sponsors include Cigna, Whiting Turner, CCBC Essex, Comcast, Giant, Katzen Eye Group, Medstar Franklin Square, MOM’s Organic Market, Utz, Wegmans, Acclaimed Promotions, CareFirst, 93.1 WPOC, Senior Digest, Maryland Senior Olympics, Gaitway 2 Better Balance and Charm City Run.