Ark-Tex Council of Governments offers a wealth of resources and services to our aging community through a variety of programs.

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing the lovely Angela Glass, who is the Benefits Counselor of the Area Agency on Aging, and I got a whole education that I want to share with you.

First of all, if you go to the Ark-Tex website, don't get all tangled up in the verbiage of the main page. Go straight to the "programs" tab and it will all make sense. :)

One of the main programs under the Ark-Tex Council of Government agency that Ms. Glass and I discussed was the "Area Agency on Aging". The agency serves nine counties. (Bowie, Cass, Morris, Titus, Franklin, Hopkins, Delta, Lamar and Red River)

ATCOG’s Area Agency on Aging (AAA) is dedicated to providing services to seniors in local areas that will promote quality of life and quality of care.  Services provided range from congregate meals, home-delivered meals, benefits counseling, care coordination, legal assistance, caregiver support, advocacy for residents in long term care, and transportation services.

Programs are as follows:

Benefits Counseling Program – Provides assistance to seniors 60 years of age and older and Medicare beneficiaries of any age concerning their public benefits and entitlements.
Care Coordination – Assesses the needs of people 60 years of age and older and then coordinates local resources to support an individual’s highest level of functioning.
Caregiver Support – Assesses needs of caregivers and then coordinates available support services.
Information, Referral, and Assistance – Provides to callers to identify and link with the appropriate service agencies
Nutrition – Serves nourishing meals at site locations and/or delivered to home-bound seniors.
Long-Term Care Ombudsman – Advocates for residents of long-term care facilities (nursing homes and assisted living facilities).
Senior Centers – providing organization and provision of support services and recreational and group activities for the older person.  Serves nourishing meals on site.
Transportation – Offers transportation to nutrition sites, local medical services, and social service agency appointments.

It didn't take long to see the pride and passion Glass takes in the services and opportunities she and the staff provide to the elderly.

"We want to make sure our aging demographic is taken care of in all areas... from housing to advocacy, transportation and even food. There are only seven of us and there is a lot of work to get done, but it never feels that way to us because we love the help we provide to our aging,."

For a moment during our interview, I thought I was going to get chocked up as Glass spoke about the Alzeimers Convention, the agency will host on June 25 at the Texarkana Convention. Having lost a very close relative to Alzheimers/dementia, I was pleased to know that guest speaker, Teepa Snow, will cover ALL basis of the condition and supply families with a wealth of knowledge and skills to help cope and maintain during trying times.

If you would like more information about the Alzheimer's Conference or ATCOG’s Area Agency on Aging in general, visit their website or just give them a call at 1-800-372-4464. Also make sure you check out my interview with Ms. Angela Glass on Texarkana Matters Sunday morning at 7:30 AM on Majic 93.3


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