M4A encourages you to check on the elderly as temperatures dip

Cold weather safety for senior citizens

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - It’s been another cold day and it’s going to be an even chillier night.

That’s why it’s especially important to check on the elderly.

The Executive Director of the Middle Alabama Area Agency on Aging calls the agency the area’s best kept secret, but she wants our older population to know they can turn to it whenever they need help.

Times have been challenging for the elderly, especially during this pandemic.

Checking on your friends, neighbors, and loved ones can be tricky during a pandemic, but the executive director of M4A said we can’t forget about our aging population.

“So, I would still encourage people to still try to maintain that human contact if it’s by phone, certainly technology is not out of the question. Just because someone is older doesn’t mean that they’re not computer savvy,” said Carolyn Fortner.

M4A has received federal funding to help the elderly with extraordinary circumstances caused by the pandemic.

“We have been helping people to pay off power bills. We have purchased clothing, food and we would be happy to do that again for people who are experiencing different challenges because of the cold weather, but we certainly don’t want any older individual in the state of Alabama not having resources, not having someone to reach out to and we definitely don’t want them to be cold.”

Fortner said the agency still has about $33,000 left in federal aid set aside to help people, as well as a critical need fund.

All you have to do is pick up the phone.

“We do respond as quickly as we can. We do have a very dedicated and devoted staff. We want to be able to get the help and the supplies out to people as quickly as we can,” Fortner said.

“Even if someone is not 60 years of age or older, we do encourage people with needs or who have questions about public benefits and public services regardless of their age to please give us a call,” she explained.

Fortner said many people have needlessly suffered during these difficult times because they either don’t know about these services or don’t think they’re eligible for them.

If you, or someone you know needs help, you can call 1-800-AGE-LINE.

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