For Immediate Release Contact: Collin Nash or Sid Nathan
July 10, 2009 (516) 869 7794
The First of a Planned Town-wide Satellite, Project Independence Great Neck Celebrates Opening
Great Neck, NY—The first in a planned network of community-based programs designed to help Town residents 60 and older “age in place” Project Independence Great Neck celebrated its arrival in the community to wide-spread praise and collective applause from hundreds of guests.
“We regularly make commitments to our youth but we don’t necessarily make that same commitment to the people who helped build this great community,” North Hempstead Supervisor Jon Kaiman told a packed room at the Great Neck Senior Center on Grace Avenue. “Now the opening of this office sets in motion our pledge to change that.”
The June 30th open house, which attracted an estimated 300 attendees including community leaders, local village officials and residents, marked the first step in a plan to take Project Independence town wide.
“One of the most gratifying aspects of being a member of the Town Board is my involvement with Project Independence,” said Councilwoman Lee Seeman. “Helping seniors stay in their homes is an honor and I appreciate the fact that being elected gives me this opportunity.”
The objective in the immediate future, Supervisor Kaiman said, is to open satellite offices in Port Washington, New Cassel, Roslyn.
“The exceptional turnout speaks volumes about the need for this innovative program,” said Town Councilwoman Maria Christina Poons. “I know that the Great Neck community and North Hempstead in general will benefit greatly from it.”
With North Hempstead’s senior population growing—residents aged 75-84 increased 40% while those older than 85 increased 60% according to the last national census—the Town developed Project Independence to help support and empower seniors by providing an array of services through partnerships with government, service providers, businesses and the local community.
Project Independence is multi-faceted but it has one primary goal: help seniors live healthy, active and engaged lives as members of their community by connecting them to the valuable services, programs and providers that will help them remain as independent as possible.
To accomplish that, the Town has partnered with social workers, health care professionals, spiritual leaders, community organizations and many others to help seniors and their families have easier access to available services and programs.
By simply dialing 311, a resident can connect with the Town’s Project Independence
Personnel, who will help them find answers to a particular question, track down information or tap into valuable services such as health screenings, immunizations and information about managing medications. Project Independence also offers caregiver support, social and recreational activities, support groups for those coping with illness, depression or loss, as well as volunteer opportunities.
First initiated as a pilot program in the New Hyde Park area, Project Independence is the first program of its kind to be established in a suburban setting.
(L to R) Supervisor Jon Kaiman, Councilwoman Maria Christina Poons, Councilwoman Lee Seeman, Executive Director of the Great Neck Senior Center, Ann Tarcher, Chair of the Board of the Great Neck Senior Center Phoebe Lazarus, Nassau County Legislator Judy Bosworth.
Supervisor Kaiman, Councilwoman Poons and Councilwoman Seeman cheer on a Great Neck Senior as he tests the video game console, “Wii”.