Aging in Place

Sister Mary and Sister Mary Jo have been living on Patriot Lane in Oshkosh for 20 years. After more than six decades spent helping others, they realized that they could use a little help themselves. They needed to make a few updates to their home like the installation of a grab bar in the bathroom to help prevent falls.

Thanks to coordinated efforts between Rebuilding Together Fox Valley, the Oshkosh Fire Department, the Aging Disability Resource Center (ADRC), and other community partners, the Sisters received the home modifications they needed at no charge.

“Everyone prefers to stay at home rather than go to assisted living,” said Sister Mary. “This truly is a step in that direction.”

On average, the Oshkosh Fire Department responds to someone who has suffered a fall more than five times a day. Many of these falls are preventable.

“When responding to a fall-related call, we help to connect the individual who fell with home safety modifications and personal health and well-being services to prevent future falls,” said Oshkosh Fire Department Chief Mike Stanley.

Grants totaling almost $160,000 from the Ladies Benevolent Society: Advocates for Older Adults Fund and U.S. Venture Fund for Basic Needs within your Community Foundation supported the development of this collaborative approach to addressing the growing number of fall-related injuries.

Our community has a great number of fall prevention resources.

Rebuilding Together Fox Valley installs grab bars, toilet seat risers, bathtub transfer benches, night lights, and bathtub anti-slip strips at no cost to qualifying homeowners.

The Winnebago County ADRC ensures that individuals have access to nutritious food, exercise classes, and transportation to appointments. In addition, they see that individuals are using the benefits that might be available to them through their health insurance provider.

And for those that want to be proactive, the Winnebago County Health Department provides free home fall risk assessments.

“Falls are not a natural part of aging,” stated Erin Roberts, a Winnebago County public health nurse who visits residents in their homes to reduce fall risks. “There are simple things that you can do to reduce the likelihood of sustaining an injury due to a fall. Things like managing your health from head to toe with eye exams and physicals, engaging in regular exercise to build strength and improve balance, and making your living environment safer.”

The Ladies Benevolent Society: Advocates for Older Adults Fund has been providing assistance to improve the health and well-being of older adults in the Oshkosh area since 1863.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *