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without anyone being overworked. This has given this group of men and women some useful purpose in giving of themselves to help others. They are extremely cheerful, efficient and of untold value to our program.

I felt that since my program is for the people, I should strive to give them what they wanted. I asked for volunteers to form a Gay 90's council to advise me on program formats. We had so many replies, we had to limit each group to a representation of 7 people. We now hold monthly meetings that are very informal but informative to my office. I admit this was another sneaky way of involving my people. Even though I have five Senior Citizens on my staff, I can use my younger age as an excuse, for getting my senior members involved in activities. No one knows better than the members just what is important to them. Out of our council meetings, we've received requests for professional speakers on Medicare, Social Security, Welfare Eligibility, Food Stamps and Health Care Programs. We have supplied all of these speakers to our groups now, with much success. We've all learned something new. Many of our members have learned they are eligible for benefits they did not realize existed. We've also had requests for speakers who were less formal. I rounded up a professional song writer who is a part-time comedian! He's been invited back, we all really enjoyed him. One of our local radio stations sent their mobile unit down and taped a show with the members, all as stars. It was quite a thrill for them to hear themselves on the radio that evening. It seemed they had done something really important. I'm sure the members who performed will never forget that day.

Between the age and income bracket, I work with, most of my thoughts are given to providing purpose and future to the members lives. I find that planning a special event for a few weeks ahead gives the members something to look forward to. The S.O.S. Advisory Committee, composed of 16 City residents from all walks of life, is really full of great ideas, from a picnic at the beach, coming up July 21st, to a Ham and Bean supper, fishing trips, bowling leagues this summer, sewing bees, wood working for our men, card games, rides in the country. It seems that once we got our groups of members together and they became acquainted, it was easy to find six men who liked to fish. It was a simple problem of getting them together, bringing up the subject, and having one say, I have a car, be ready at 5:00 A.M. tomorrow.

We have accomplished a great deal in relieving loneliness among our lower income seniors. Everyone has a friend now, someone to share life with. We have one lady who brought her neighbor to join our club. They said they'd lived next door to each other for years and never spoke, until the one member felt her neighbor may be eligible for membership. They are now looking for an apartment they can share. They've found they have a great deal in common and enjoy each others company.

The ministers and Priests of Woonsocket have given a great deal of strength to our clubs and members. Each week we have at least two in attendance. The people enjoy talking socially with the clergy and the clergymen always come up with a cute story that results in a good laugh for all of us.

Word of good work S.O.S. is doing in Woonsocket has spread throughout the state of R.I., into Massachusetts, and as far south as North Carolina. I've received numerous inquiries on how to get a S.O.S. Program started in other communities, and I never turn down a chance to address a group on my program. I continue to say my program because to me it isn't just a job, its a way of life. I don't know of anyone, short of Billy Graham, who receives as much satisfaction from their work as I do.

When we first began to door knock to seek out members, we had approximately 20 people helping us. The SPAC Community Organizer knew the areas where the majority of the lower income seniors lived. For six weeks we wore out our knuckles and our shoes. Now, our present members are bringing in new applicants so fast, we have cut our door to door campaign staff to 2 people. We anticipate having to start a waiting list, which will have to be held until September and our refunding. The only disappointment is every day someone becomes 55 in our city and we'll have to say wait. May the good Lord grant them the delay.

Due to requests from many of our members for home nursing care, in order to save money on hospital care, the Woonsocket branch of the American Red Cross has agreed to teach a 5 week course, free of charge, to all of our members who wish to enroll. The program will include the changing of bed linen with a patient remaining in bed, also the correct procedure for bathing a patient in

bed. We have a large group of women with time on their hands, and with the aid of this course, they will find themselves in a useful position in their neighborhoods and with their families and friends who are bedridden. They will have a useful purpose to their lives. So many of our people say that time on their hands is their worst enemy. At least we've gotten them out of their rocking chairs and have them thinking of others, not just themselves.

Some of our men have expressed an interest in the Big Brothers of America. They've decided maybe they're not too old to be of value to a fatherless boy. They are quick to say they move slowly and are not well educated, but, they're willing to be a friend to a young boy. The Executive Director of Big Brothers of Rhode Island agrees with the men and will address them as a group in June. Among our summer activities, two men who are on the S.O.S. Advisory Committee will conduct tennis classes each Sunday. Somehow they are being supplied with tennis rackets and balls. We even have a cheering section forming to root us on.

The office of S.O.S., through the Gay 90's Diners Club has indeed uncovered some interesting facts about our Seniors. Even though they have little money, there's still a spark of life in each one. It just takes a group of interested people to pull it out. Each member is involved in one or more of our activities, has something to look forward to in the future, and has at present 799 friends ready to lend them a helping hand.

ITEM 4. GOVERNMENT SURVEY OF THE FOOD LIFT INFORMATION PROGRAM

(Please fill out and mail back as soon as possible)

(Answer yes or no)

1. Are you still on the program? Been on only since June 1st, 1971. 2. Do you know anyone you think should be receiving Food Stamps and are not? No.

3. Are you having any problem in the Food Stamp Program. Explain why. Very satisfactory as of now-thank you.

4. Do you have any suggestion for our program FLIP. Very grateful it has helped me in getting extra food that I could not afford with only S.S.S.I. check. 5. Has this program improved your eating standards? I can get more food with the allotment of stamps, which it has helped me.

6. Would you be interested in attending a program where you could learn to eat better for less money? I have diet to follow. Thanks for your kind thoughts.

7. Did you know that you might be eligible for the Food Stamps before FLIP contacts you? I thought that only the welfare members were the only one entitled to it.

8. Do you think its best to maintain the FLIP Program? Or to go down to the Welfare Department to apply? I rather go to you people than the Welfare. I feel more at ease with the workers just like kinfolk.

9. Did you appreciate being taken in by appointments? Or rather just to walk in?

10. Do you prefer Food Stamps to Commodities? I do not know about commodities never had any. Food stamps are satisfactory so far. Any Comments? Food Stamps were a blessing to me. With them I can get better grade of meat than I could with only SSSI. Thank you. Very grateful. Keep them going. Thank you for your participation in our program and answering these questions.

MRS. IDA WHEELER,
Director of FLIP.

PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT

Eleanor F. Slater, Coordinator of the Division of Aging wishes to make all persons aware of a vicious flimflam being worked on the elderly.

A young women claiming to represent a nutritional agency of a ficticious department of "Community Relations" on Promenade Street, appears at a persons door saying she will take her food stamp money and voucher and pick-up her stamps for her at the redemption center.

The women promises to return in two or three hours but never returns. In another variation one or two women claiming to represent Progress for Providence promise to pick-up the food stamps.

If a person comes to your door promising to purchase food stamps, ask them to show identification, get her name, then ask her to return later.

Call the agency she claims to represent to see if she is what she claims to be. Do not give money to anyone you do not know.

The only agency that performs this service is the University of Rhode Island Cooperative Extension Service or a representative from F.L.I.P. or a representative from S.O.S. They do this as a courtesy to their regular clients.

ELEANOR F. SLATER,

Division on Aging, Department of Community Affairs, 289 Promenade

Street, Providence, R.I.

F.L.I.P.-Mrs. Ida Wheeler Tel. 766-3040.
S.O.S.-Mrs. Rebecca Doss Tel. 766-3734.

Appendix 2

IMPROVEMENTS IN BENEFITS FOR SENIOR CITIZENS SUPPORTED BY SENATOR CLAIBORNE PELL

1. Cost of Living Increases

S. 1767 introduced by Senator Pell would provide for automatic increases in Social Security benefits as the cost of living increased.

2. Create Allowance for Outside Earnings

S. 1768 introduced by Senator Pell would allow a Social Security Beneficiary to earn $2,700 without reductions in Social Security Benefits.

3. Increase Benefits and Coverage

S. 923 cosponsored by Senator Pell would provide for :

-eliminate the Part B Physicians Premium of $5.60 Medicare.
-coverage of out-of-hospital prescription drugs under Medicare.

-15 percent raise in Social Security benefits retroactive to January, 1971.
-15 percent raise in Social Security benefits for 1972.

-increase in minimum monthly benefits from $64 a month to $100 a month in 1971 and to $120 a month in 1972.

4. Employment for Senior Citizens

S. 1307 cosponsored by Senator Pell would provide a public service employment program for middle-aged and older workers.

5. Nutrition for Elderly

S. 1163 cosponsored by Senator Pell would provide for programs of hot meals for the elderly to be served in community centers and non-profit institutions.* 6. Household Aides

S. 882 cosponsored by Senator Pell would provide for the services of a household aide to be covered by the Medicare Program.

7. Transportation

S. 1124 cosponsored by Senator Pell would establish a Federal program to plan and demonstrate improved transportation services for the elderly.

S. 1554 cosponsored by Senator Pell would provide for reduced air fares for senior citizens.

S. 1541 cosponsored by Senator Pell would provide for half fare for senior citizens on transportation services supported by Federal funds.

8. Senior Centers

S. 1588 cosponsored by Senator Pell would provide for the construction and maintenance of multi-purpose community centers for senior citizens.

9. Nursing Homes

S. 1589 cosponsored by Senator Pell would create a rehabilitation program for patients in long-term care homes.

S. 1582 cosponsored by Senator Pell would provide for the training of nurses aides, orderlies, and medical assistants for nursing homes.

*See p. 203.

(202)

92D CONGRESS 1ST SESSION

S. 1163

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

MARCH 10, 1971

Mr. KENNEDY (for himself, Mr. WILLIAMS, Mr. EAGLETON, Mr. BIBLE, Mr. CHURCH, Mr. CRANSTON, Mr. HARRIS, Mr. HOLLINGS, Mr. HUGHES, Mr. INOUYE, Mr. Moss, Mr. PASTORE, Mr. PELL, Mr. PERCY, and Mr. TUNNEY) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Labor and Public Welfare

A BILL

To amend the Older Americans Act of 1965 to provide grants to States for the establishment, maintenance, operation, and expansion of low-cost meal programs, nutrition training and education programs, opportunity for social contacts, and for other purposes.

1

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representa2 tives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, SECTION 1. Title VII of the Older Americans Act of

3

4 1965 is redesignated as title VIII, and sections 701 through 5 705 of that Act are respectively redesignated as sections 801 6 through 805.

7

SEC. 2. The Older Americans Act of 1965 is amended

8 by inserting the following new title immediately after title

9 VI thereof:

II

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