Shoreline Village: A plan for aging in your home, Part One

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Phinney-Greenwood neighborhood Village members
Photo courtesy Senior Services

This is the first of a four-part series about the Village that is being planned for Shoreline.

A Village for Shoreline: Part One

A few of your neighbors think Shoreline could benefit by forming a Village. And they hope to entice you to get involved by helping plan it, volunteer once it has launched, and/or become a member so you can enjoy all the benefits.

What is a Village? It is not so much a place as it is a plan for aging in your home. It is a membership-based organization with paid staff who act as a personal, central resource to coordinate access to services for you. The services will help you stay in your home as you age and could be provided by trained neighborhood volunteers, or you might be referred to screened vendors for more complex needs and services. Many Villages also offer social and activity groups. 

You can be part of a Village whether you need these services yourself, or can provide them for members. Services might include: yard work, rides to the doctor or a friend’s house, housecleaning, companionship, pet care, painters, plumbers, grocery shopping and educational and social events at nearby locations.

How did Villages get started? Originally started in the Beacon Hill neighborhood of Boston, MA in 2002, the Village concept arose out of community members’ desire to reside in their own homes while being able to access services that addressed their changing lifestyles as they aged. They wanted to take responsibility for their aging, which meant deciding how they would live and ultimately spend their last days. At its core, the Village Movement is customer and community-driven. Now there are more than 200 in the US.

Here is a short video featuring a member from the PNA Village in Seattle.

Is there a typical Village? Not really. “If you've seen one Village; you’ve seen one Village.” Each one is planned specifically to meet the needs of the local community. By design, all Villages focus on engagement to remain healthy, not on frailty and disability. Interdependence is the goal, not isolated independence. And for those of you who are already members of the SWEL Timebank, you can see that a Village is a great partner for Timebanking in a close-knit community like Shoreline.

What Are the Costs? Each Village determines its own annual fees, so they can range from $250 per year to $900 per year for an individual. Volunteer services are free to members; professionals and agencies charge fees but may give discounts to Village members.

Who is Involved in Shoreline So Far? It’s at the embryonic stage, so …. YOU could help plan it! Folks like Chris Eggen (Shoreline City Council), and Judy Parsons and Bob Lohmeyer of the Shoreline Senior Center are part of the planning group. 

There are already three Villages in Seattle: PNA Village (Phinney-Greenwood neighborhood), NEST (NE Seattle), and Wider Horizons (serving Central Seattle) 

In the next three articles, we'll go into more depth about who joins Villages, how they work, and how they get started and develop. 

Curious? To find out a bit more and about the next meeting on June 2, please contact Joanne Donohue at Senior Services, 206-727-6206

See other articles in this series


Anonymous,  May 25, 2015 at 12:15 AM  

Making amends for supporting the 185th and 145th rezones, are we? This is REAL aging in place, not this bs roadshow song and dance the city and their consultants took on tour in Shoreline last summer. Look in the notes from the City's "visioning workshops" for the real estate industry and real estate developers. "Silver Tsunami" was the "catch phrase" that was captured and republished in a city report. Offensive and shameful! Sure, let's exploit a term reserved for horrible natural disasters and use it to describe ths tidal wave of cash, gold, silver that the wolves are salivating at the wait for. Senior citizens should not be warehoused!

Janet Way May 25, 2015 at 9:17 AM  

Ahem! Um, Dori, with all due respect, this is what we (Shoreline Preservation Society and hundreds of others) have been saying since last year! We (seniors and future seniors) mostly just want to stay in our homes in Shoreline and protect our neighborhoods. We do not want to be displaced by massive radical, mile-wide rezones!

Hey, Shoreline City Council! Get it?

Anonymous,  May 26, 2015 at 12:40 AM  

What will Part 2 be about? A sales pitch to scare seniors into moving out of their homes and into more expensive high-density senior housing? Convincing seniors that they"re "taking up too much space" in the subareas? Senior services with help from Futurewise sponsored early light rail workshops to sell people on the high-density dream. They even offered stipends to community members to advocate for the "changing neighborhoods" which was just really about high-density redevelopment and the.slash and burn of old trees in the area. There's a clip on YouTube with a montage of video clips from these presentations, but funny, there was no sound or dialogue, just music. If senior services has nothing to hide, maybe they'd be so kind as to upload the full presentation video online as well as written comments from the "visioning activities" led by lobbyists. Or were the questions and comments from the seniors too surly and smart? Did the planners and consultants fearmonger and bully the seniors into the belief that they would not be able to afford to stay in their homes unless the subarea redeveloped and redeveloped fast? Did they alarm them into making premature decisions to sell and move away? So many unanswered questions. Perhaps part 2 will enlighten us?

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