Thanks to the 23 volunteers and staff who were able to join us for the first volunteer meeting of 2024!! As always, it was great to connect with each other and share the joy of walking alongside our Cook County friends and neighbors on the journey of aging.
You are making a difference!
Each month we include a survey with the cost share letters we mail to our Chore and Senior Rides clients. Julie shared some of the comments from those surveys. Here is a sampling of comments we received in last few months:
The services were easily accessed – the staff & volunteers were very helpful.
This has been a year of “How is this going to all happen?” Somehow, with Care Partners’ support, it ALL did.
The transportation is a bridge for me to be healthy enough to return to work. Please keep helping people! We need you!
It’s good work – keep it going.
I could not be more pleased! It is such a comfort to know I can turn to Care Partners.
Thank you, volunteers, for being the heart of Care Partners!
A first look at our 2023 numbers!
Not only do we know you are making a difference because of the wonderful things we hear about you…we also have statistics to back that claim up! Click on the link below to view a report celebrating your good work in 2023. Wow…just…wow!!
In January, the Care Partners Board hosted a celebration for two longtime board members who retired in 2024 after completing the maximum number of terms allowed according to our by-laws. Jack McHugh and Jayne Johnson helped shape Care Partners into the healthy, respected organization it is today, and it was a joy and privilege to honor them.
In other board news, Nancy Starr has stepped in as Board President for 2024, and Terri Nelson is now Board Secretary. Nancy will retire from the board in 2025. The recent retirements mean that there are board openings! Let Julie or Nancy Starr know if you may be interested or would like more information about volunteering to be part of our board.
Renewed community initiatives
Care Partners has always had a strong commitment to community education and advocacy regarding aging. Here are two initiatives that we’ve championed in the past, and will renew in 2024!
Dementia Friends aims to change people’s perceptions of dementia, and transform the way we think, talk and act about the disease. The one-hour session helps participants learn about dementia and the small ways we can help. Julie will present two Dementia Friends sessions in March for Sawtooth Mountain Clinic staff, and we hope to begin offering it to the larger community soon.
Care Partners board member and retired RN Kathy Reeves is receiving training to help people complete Health Care Directives as part of end-of-life planning. She will assist Hilja Iverson, North Shore Health Social Worker, and our own Julie Wilson with a Health Care Directive workshop at Grand Portage on Monday, February 26, 4:30pm at the Elderly Nutrition Center. Kathy will also be available to help people one-on-one. Give us a call if you’d like to schedule a time to visit with her about this, and keep an eye out for upcoming workshops that may be presented in other areas of Cook County.
Changes coming to some volunteer service reports
Beginning Friday, February 9, a new question will be added to Chores, Delivery and Companion volunteer service reports. We’ll ask you to estimate the number of hours spent traveling to and from the chore, delivery, or visit. Clients who receive Chore or Delivery services are invited to make a donation to Care Partners based on the number of hours spent on the chore or delivery. We really don’t want to include the time a volunteer spends getting to and from the chore or delivery into the equation (because travel time can vary so widely depending on where a volunteer lives!) However, we want to capture this information so we can let our funders know the total amount of time you amazing people are donating to help our friends and neighbors! Companion clients are not asked to make a donation based on hours, but we would still like to track the amount of time volunteers spend traveling to and from the client, as as well as the amount of time spent in direct contact with the client. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns about this. (There won’t be any changes to the Senior Rides report.) Thanks!!!!
Collaboration with Art Colony in August
Care Partners is excited to collaborate with the Grand Marais Art Colony as part of their 2024 theme of Art + Embodiment, and to welcome Instructor Erin Rafferty-Bugher! Erin will lead three free events in August that explore the Art of Health through the topic of Memory Care. She’ll be our guest presenter at the August 15 Memory Cafe and guide participants through a simple, hands-on weaving activity. She’ll lead caregivers in a workshop on August 16th called “HeArt of the Caregiver” which will include lunch followed by an art activity using mixed media and various art materials. On August 17th, she will present “Avoiding Practitioner Burnout: Resiliency Trees” for area practitioners working in healthcare and caregiving spaces. These events are made possible by a special Art Colony grant provided by the North Shore Health Care Foundation! You can click the link below to read more on the Grand Marais Art Colony website.
Help some not-quite-perfect pottery and other “seconds” from local artists find a good home. The “Second Chance Art Sale” will take place on Saturday, March 9th from 10am to 2pm at The Hub. Your donation in any amount pays for the treasures you find – and proceeds from the Second Chance Art Sale will benefit Care Partner’s work to support community members on the journey of aging and end-of-life. Many thanks to our wonderful artist friends for their generosity!
Next volunteer meeting in May!
Our second quarter volunteer meeting will be held on at the Hub on Wednesday, May 8 at 12:45pm. As always when we meet at the Hub, lunch is on us if you’d like to come at noon! This just in…our May meeting will include “Wheelchair Basics” training with Treg Axtell, North Shore Health Physical Therapist! Learn the best techniques and tips for assisting clients or loved ones who use wheelchairs, including how to fold and lock chairs, how to best position them for getting in and out of vehicles, and how to manage curbs. Good eats, good company, good learning, and fabulous prizes…sounds like a good plan to me! 🙂
Upcoming and “Save the Date” events…
Zoom & Learn – Wednesday, February 28, noon-1pm, “Housing and Older Adults” with guest Jason Hale, Cook County HRA – Register or more information
In an always-evolving effort to keep folks informed about news and happenings at Care Partners, we’ve created a short “Monthly Email Update” which will be emailed – not coincidentally – every month! If you’d like to receive the latest scoop, use the link below to sign up for our quarterly newsletter and/or the new monthly update! Note that even if you already get our quarterly newsletter, you will need to sign up to be added to our monthly update list.