Mid-Cities Care Corps provides a third program for seniors–Social Outreach–which is geared towards improving the quality of life for our senior neighbors and connecting them to other senior friends. We do this in three ways:
Our Phone Friends program is a friendship-centered social network through regular peer interaction via the telephone and occasional face-to-face visits.
Each of these Phone Friends is connected with two other Phone Friends, all fellow MCCC clients, so that they both get a call and make a call once a week. These Phone Friends stay in contact with the same people for half of a year and are then assigned new Phone Friends for the second half of the year. The motive of the program is to crack the isolation of seniors. The intent is for the friendships to evolve into regular and ongoing conversations between the clients based upon interests shared.
Many of our Phone Friends meet each other through our Social Events. These occur once a month on the third Tuesday and have different themes each time, with food and games to go along with them. Our themes have varied from a Garden ParTEA to an Easter celebration to an Ice Cream Social. Our senior clients and MCCC volunteers enjoy the opportunity to interact with each other, eat great food, and play games (with prizes!). Dedicated MCCC volunteers provide transportation to our Social Events so that even the clients who are not able to drive can attend. We hope that these events help the seniors make friends with each other and escape isolation in their individual homes.
During the Christmas season, many groups from around the Mid-Cities area join with us to provide Holiday Outreach to our seniors. These groups pack an enormous number of holiday gift baskets and deliver them to the seniors. Groups, such as Second Saturday Mothers and Sons and Treetops School, have been partnering with us for years to provide these gifts to seniors for the holidays, which include food, toiletry items, and other things that the clients request. When they drop off the gift baskets, they also stay to visit with the seniors and listen to their stories. It is our hope that the Holiday Outreach program helps to bridge the generational divide and gives our senior clients a wonderful and much-needed gift during the holiday season.