Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Senior Centers

While much has been made of regionalization of schools, little has been heard of other areas where this may prove effective with little cost and with little effort. Regionalizing Senior Centers could be done on many levels- and should be done.

Right now we have a program with endangered funding. Why not combine these programs? Not three newsletters- One. Not three programs, but combined programs. You could still keep your three centers. Think about it. Many possibilities present themselves when you think of the senior centers in this fashion.

What is the most popular program at our local Senior Center? An exercise program in the evening open to all. Thinking of our Senior Center as ONLY for seniors is a misnomer. Widening our program focus is healthy not only for seniors, but for the community as a whole. Perhaps the time has even come to think of them as Community Centers. Witness our center's oncoming plan to offer cooking courses. I know two young men who could use some cooking courses (my sons).

Why does Middletown not rent out its Center? It does so in effect when it throws a Sat. Cancer Socity fundraiser/bakesale. This also called for the 4 hr. presence and pay for an overtime custodian. Why not lease this place out for meetings/parties? Much of the time it is empty. It has a kitchen and parking, plus a large room. Hello, income. You could initiate a pass key system there; thereby, no custodian needed for overtime. Think of another place where you could hold community meetings which is sorely needed. And income. For the town and/or center. Easy.

I'll publish later more reasons why some reform in our local center is needed. All of the above could also be handled through a private non-profit which is what Newport & Portsmouth do. They contribute an amount (far less than Middletown) & let this group operate their centers. It not only is cost-effective, but is a responsible system.

By combining centers on some levels, more private foundation monies would also be available. What do you think?
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