Thursday, July 29, 2010
Daycare isn’t just for children. The organizers at Central Coast Visiting Nurse Association Adult Day Centers are hoping caregivers in Monterey will embrace that idea.
Since the CCVNA’s first adult daycare center opened in Salinas in 1987, its mission has been simple: Provide caregivers of the elderly a weekday respite from the taxing job of caring for a loved one by providing daytime activities and stimulation for elderly clients in a group setting.
The program expanded to Seaside in 1993 and Monterey in 1998.
But when financial troubles closed the Seaside center last September, only the Monterey and Salinas centers still stood.
On July 9, the 18-person-capacity Monterey Hilltop center closed; three days later, the program shifted downtown to a much-needed larger space at the Bethlehem Lutheran Church on Cass Street, upping care capacity to 60.
“We needed a lot more space – the program’s growing,” says Monterey center director Mia Gomez. The new space allows more program activities including musical therapy and chair exercises, she adds.
Client services cost $60 a day for five hours of care and a meal. The program receives some assistance from the Multi-Purpose Senior Service Program, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, donations and other sources.
But Faith Collins, who oversees both elder care centers, says they’re battling “state financial issues.” The Monterey center currently has 32 enrolled clients, but not all are regulars. “Our goal is 30 a day – that’s what it’d take to become financially stable,” Gomez says.
“The whole concept of adult daycare is very new for some folks. They think, ‘Sure, for kids, but for the elderly?’ But it helps people stay at home longer. Plenty of our clients, with our help, are able to pass peacefully without having to stay in assisted living or leave home. That’s what we want to provide.”