Aging Gracefully: FH's Senior Residence

Posted on June 1, 2011

Mary at home in the 441 Residence.Mary at home in the 441 Residence.Julian R.P. Eaton
441 Residence, Fountain House

I have been a housing worker at Fountain House since '07 and a worker at the 441 Residence for Seniors for a little over a year. As someone I work with so eloquently stated, the senior residents at 441 have a special bond with each other through being part of Fountain House for so long. Both the location and the community at the senior residence are invaluable housing services. We are within a half a block of the clubhouse building, and many of our residents feel empowered by being so close to the Fountain House community that has assisted them and in which they’ve invested so much time and energy over the years.
 
In addition to the luxury of living close to the main clubhouse, we offer many unique services that benefit the aged. Our community works together diligently to help facilitate and understand the services that can promote our well-being.
 
A special consideration when working with some elderly people is helping them maintain a healthy, yet varied diet. “I’ve lost interest in eating” and “I’m tired of eating the same thing every day” are two common scenarios that our community must address. During our monthly resident council meeting, we plan special meals to celebrate the holidays. For members of our community who request assistance facilitating nutritious daily meals, Encore Community Services provides Meals on Wheels through an agency called Self Help. Depending on the needs of a resident, they can deliver fresh meals 7 days a week, 5 days a week or 2 frozen meals every weekend for a suggested donation of $1.50 per meal.
 
Striker, one of 441's resident catsStriker, one of 441's resident catsAn unfortunate reality is that aging is often accompanied by physical limitations. Many in our community require assistance in completing daily living tasks and alleviating physical stress. Self Help and The Jewish Home can provide homemakers (someone who can help cook, clean and assist in maintaining a healthy living space), home health attendants (someone who can assist with everything homemakers do plus testing services for medical practitioners), and physical therapists.
 
 Because the medical needs of our community can be so great, we have a relatively intimate network of healthcare providers with whom we interface to communicate all relevant and necessary information. Two of our main health care providers are The Ryan Chelsea Clinton Community Health Care Center and the Sidney Baer Center, formerly known as The Storefront. We also work with many other wonderful agencies that assist in providing these types of services for seniors throughout the city.
 
Many in our community are semi- or non-ambulatory and cannot rely exclusively on public transportation.  A great service that the MTA provides to assist with transportation is Access-a-Ride.  It offers shared ride, door-to-door paratransit service.
 
It is a privilege to work within the Fountain House structure and community and to help inform our readers about some of the unique concerns regarding senior housing in the Fountain House community. If you are a member of Fountain House, age 55 or older, and you’re interested in residing at 441 you should inquire with Fountain House’s housing department.
 

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