How The Area Agency On Aging Will Spend $700,000 In Phoenix COVID-19 Funds

Published: Wednesday, June 10, 2020 - 3:24pm
Updated: Thursday, June 11, 2020 - 7:18am

A Valley nonprofit will launch two new programs to help seniors during the pandemic. The money will come from Phoenix’s share of federal coronavirus relief funds.

Since mid-March, Mary Lynn Kasunic, president and CEO of Area Agency on Aging, said the group’s 24-hour Senior Help Line has been getting twice as many calls as normal.

She told the Phoenix City Council on Tuesday about 30% of people are concerned about shopping. She said they’ll use some of the money to deliver non-food items.

“Staff will work with local delivery programs to supply seniors with bleaches, toilet paper, laundry detergent, hand soap, paper towels, Depends and, of  course, get their prescription,” Kasunic said. “We propose to serve about 600 people.”  

She said the other program will serve about 2,000 people. It will involve social workers making weekly phone calls to seniors that report feeling lonely, anxious and isolated.

“We will also, in talking to them, identify them and hook them up with other resources,” Kasunic said.

The agency offers programs and services across Maricopa County. The senior help line is available 24-hours at 602-264-4357. For the hard of hearing or deaf, text 520-775-1899.

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