Mardi Gras Dance Social
Friday Feb. 24
All active adults 50 and older are invited to dance the afternoon away to the Catahoula Mardi Gras Band live at the Community Arts Center, 10046 Church St., Truckee. Doors open for free admission at 1 p.m. Dancing from 1:30-4 p.m. Refreshments, socializing, spare dance partners and fun, all in a celebration of good music and the season. Bring your friends, invite your neighbors and house guests. For more information call Sierra Senior Services at 530-550-7600.
Financial elder abuse forum
Hard times make for hard choices – and all of them aren’t good. Financial abuse of elders has increased according to a 2011 MetLife report. This problem was dramatically highlighted by the 2011 Congressional testimony from Mickey Rooney — an actor and public speaker whose career spanned 10 decades.
Rooney accused his family of financial abuse. “Over the course of time, my daily life became unbearable. … I felt trapped, scared, used and frustrated. But above all, I felt helpless,” the testimony read. “For years I suffered silently, unable to muster the courage to seek the help I knew I needed.”
It is estimated by MetLife older Americans lose $2.9 billion a year to financial abuse — a 12 percent increase from 2008.
A forum addressing this problem will be presented by Sierra Senior Services, Plumas Bank and Community Health Partners. Award-winning Placer County Supervising Deputy District Attorney Suzanne Gazzaniga will speak Feb. 29, 6 p.m. at Plumas Bank, 11638 Donner Pass Road, Truckee.
In 2011 Placer County Adult Protective Services investigated 126 reports of financial abuse. “Mandated reporting for financial institutions became in effect within the last two years. It is our belief that with the mandated system utilizing APS, financial reports will continue rise … What has been astonishing is that there are more family members that have been part of this suspected abuse than strangers / scams,” said Richard Hill of the Placer County APS Department.
But most abusers are strangers, often contacting the senior by telephone.
Martha Frantz, Nevada County senior outreach nurse, recalls a 75-year-old Truckee woman who was repeatedly called by phone scammers: “She gave them so much money that the bank became worried and finally called the police. Her daughter disconnected the land line to stop the scammers from calling her anymore.”
The internet is another tool for targeting vulnerable seniors. Ann Ajari, Tahoe Forest Hospital social worker, tells the unhappy story of a local man who lost $50,000 to an internet “friend.” Thrown into poverty by this, he ended up living in his car for a year.
Ms. Gazzaniga will present a case study, provide tips for preventing financial elder abuse and outline some of the current financial scams encountered in Placer County.
The first Sunday of every month there is a pancake breakfast sponsored by a local service club or other affiliated group. Meet Sierra Senior Services SnowFest! Queen candidate March 4, 8-11 a.m. in the community dining room of the Truckee Donner Senior Apartments. Cost is $7 adults and $3 children under 12.
Make a difference in the life of a senior today and sponsor a hot, nutritious delivered meal. Cost is $15 Meal for one day; $105 Meals for one week; $450 Meals for one month; $2,700 Meals for six months; $5,475 Meals for one year. All donations are tax deductible — Sierra Senior Services is a 501(c)(3).
Feb. 24: Mardi Gras Party, special lunch at noon
Feb. 24: Dance at the Community Arts Center on Church Street in Truckee, 1-4 p.m.
Feb. 28: Strength and Balance in the Community Room, 10 a.m.
Feb. 29: Backward Day at lunch
For additional information contact Sierra Senior Services 530-550-7600 or www.sierra seniors.org.