Winters Senior Commission on Aging adds quality of life

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Like the fine wine that they are, older adults only get better with age. They’re rich in wisdom with notes of experience, and the Winters Senior Commission on Aging is on a mission to bolster quality of life for those in their golden years.

Essentially, the Winters Senior Commission on Aging is an advisory group to the City Council. They make recommendations regarding policies and programs affecting older adults so they can continue adding value to — and receive value from — the community they’re a part of.

Comprising this commission are a group of selfless individuals teeming with compassion and unique ambitions behind why they do what they do.

Glenn Ripley
Courtesy photo

“Seniors bring an important dimension of experience and wisdom. Having lived in Africa where they honor their seniors, I grew to love and appreciate that role and what they can bring to the community,” said Glenn Ripley, commission Chair and member, on how his past experiences affect current goals. “We all have loved ones who are seniors, we’re all going to become seniors one day and I think sometimes they can feel neglected in our culture. It’s important to serve and honor them.”

Assisting in this cultivation of love and honor for Winters’ seniors is Commissioner Wally Pearce.

“Older adults are our patriarchs and matriarchs, our families’ root stock and our connections to our past, foreign lands and forgotten ancestors,” fellow commission member, Pearce explained. “My goal is to identify, improve and develop relevant services and opportunities for our senior citizens, and act as their advocate to the City of Winters City Councils on issues affecting them as we encounter their unmet needs and evaluate the effectiveness of existing programs and laws. I believe every person deserves to age well and live their life with dignity and independence as they age.”

Alongside Ripley and Pearce in this enterprise is Commissioner Marianne Boyer. With her, a shared ambition to honor and serve the elderly.

“I accepted a position on the commission because I wanted to forward ideas and concerns of the seniors of Winters, to those in the position to do something,” said Boyer. “My heart is with our seniors and I try my best to think of ways to make a better way of living in Winters for them by coming together with games and activities.”

Other community members who are serving as Commissioners include Tina Lowden, Cheryl Sandoval, Dawn Van Dyke and Valerie Whitworth.

To stay up-to-date on the commission’s meetings and agendas, visit http://www.cityofwinters.org/seniors/ and look for the “Winters Senior Commission on Aging” link. They currently meet on the second Wednesday of the month at 5:30 p.m. via a Zoom link.

The community is welcome to join in, and the Commissioners hope that older adults in Winters will reach out to them with feedback and to share about their experiences living in Winters.

As far as getting involved is concerned, one simply needs to keep their eyes open for opportunities. For example, a senior center will be open in Winters in the near future, and with it will come a plethora of opportunities to volunteer. The Winters Senior Commission on Aging is currently working on creating a survey to help gather feedback from the community on the types of programs and what needs local older adults are hoping the senior center will help fulfill.

“We need to listen to our community,” Lowden said at their last meeting as she encouraged commissioners to be open to to hear from the community so they can learn what their unmet needs are and what challenges it is they are facing locally.

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