Talbot Community Connections sponsors Senior Summit

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Special to Dorchester Banner/Amy Steward
Organizers of the first annual Senior Summit to be held June 9, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Talbot Community Center on US Route 50 in Easton are pictured from left: Amy Steward, vice president, Talbot Community Connections; Debbe Fairbanks, Talbot County Department of Social Services; Angela Preston, Talbot County Department of Social Services; April Sharp, executive director, Talbot County Department of Social Services; Jennifer Wright, board member, Talbot Community Connections; and Ruth Sullivan, president, Talbot Community Connections.

EASTON — There is not one perfect guidebook for traveling the path of aging. Whether you are on the path yourself or helping a loved one or patient/client navigate this path, the process of gathering the information you need can be daunting. This year, Talbot Community Connections (TCC) and the Talbot County Department of Social Services, have recognized this gap in information and will host its first Senior Summit on June 9, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Talbot Community Center on US Route 50 in Easton.

This day-long program for seniors, children of seniors, caregivers, professionals and concerned citizens will provide presentations and discussions on the issues that seniors face today.
Talbot Community Connections (TCC), a nonprofit arm of the Talbot County Department of Social Services, has the mission to raise and distribute funds to answer unmet needs that are fundamental to the safety, security, health and well-being of Talbot County’s children and adults. These needs cross all economic levels. According to Ruth Sullivan, president of TCC, “We have all had personal experiences helping seniors in our lives to make decisions involving their housing, health care, retirement and end-of-life planning. We know how important current information is in helping them through this challenging, and often confusing, time of their lives.”

She adds, “We hope this event will become an annual opportunity for businesses and senior care providers in our area to share information to enable our senior population to make sound personal decisions in order to have a good quality of life in their later years.”

The Senior Summit will include workshops on long distance caregiving, aging by design, Rx drug misuse, and the Village concept of seniors aging in their homes. A panel discussion on the continuum of care will cover care transition and partnerships, family caregiving, palliative care, and hospice care. Another panel discussion on senior exploitation will address the signs and symptoms of vulnerable adults, financial exploitation, social media and Internet safety, and Medicare. In addition to break-out workshops, there will be the opportunity for participants to have lunch and to visit vendor tables to gather additional information on aging issues and services.

Workshop and panel speakers represent AARP, University of Maryland Shore Regional Health, the Talbot County Health Department, Upper Shore Aging, Talbot Hospice, Talbot County Department of Social Services, the Maryland State Police, Talbot County Sheriff’s Department, Hill’s Pharmacy, Talbot Village Connections, Aging by Design, Wor-Wic Community College, Senior Medicare Patrol/Maryland Department of Aging, and the Maryland Department of Human Resources.

The keynote speaker, Dr. Memo Diriker, director of BEACON and a professor at Salisbury University, will present on “The Graying of the Shore,” and The Rev. George R. Merrill will present on “The Spirituality and Aging in the Post Modern Era.”

According to April Sharp, director of the Talbot County Department of Social Services, “By 2020, 30 percent Talbot County citizens will be over the age of 65. We are excited to partner with TCC, our nonprofit arm, on this exciting Senior Summit. They have contributed well over $150,000 to our agency over the last 10 years to assist with the unmet needs of citizens in Talbot County that go beyond the funding of Talbot County Department of Social Services. Our growing aging population has many of these unmet needs.”

The cost of the Senior Summit is $10 for seniors (age 62+), $45 for the general public, with an additional $20 fee for optional professional Social Work CEUs. Pre-registration is required by June 1.

For further information, contact Angela Preston at 410-820-5621 or talbotcommunityconnections@gmail.com or visit talbotcommunityconnections.org to download a registration form. Registration forms are also available at the front desk at Talbot County Department of Social Services at 301 Bay St., Unit 5 in Easton.    Gold sponors of the Senior Summit are University of Maryland Shore Regional Health, Choptank Community Health, AARP, Talbot County Department of Social Services and the Talbot County Government.

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