Home / News and Events / Partnership with Local Foundation News & Events Community foundation, Direction Home partnership addresses rapidly growing aging adult population FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE For more information, contact: Tina Boyes Akron Community Foundation, Vice President, Marketing & Communications Phone: 330-436-562 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Community foundation, Direction Home partnership addresses rapidly growing aging adult population Funding will help provide centralized service access for older adults AKRON, Ohio (May 30, 2017) - Direction Home Akron Canton Area Agency on Aging & Disabilities will receive a grant of up to $200,000 from Akron Community Foundation to create a coalition to meet the needs of Summit County's growing senior population. This population will outnumber children in the county by 2020, according to Scripps Gerontology Center at Miami University. The grant was awarded as a result of a community foundation report commissioned last year, as well as a series of convenings it organized that included more than 60 stakeholders and service providers. The No. 1 priority that emerged from the convenings was helping aging adults remain in their homes, regardless of their ability to pay. Akron Community Foundation President and CEO John T. Petures Jr. acknowledged the goal is a challenging one, given that in 2030, 30 percent of the county's population will be age 60 or older, and 47 percent will have at least a moderate physical or cognitive disability, according to a Scripps Gerontology Center report. In advance of this growth, Petures said now is the time to begin building a more robust and coordinated approach to service delivery. "Our aging adults are an often overlooked group, and if we don't address this population boom now, we run the risk of straining a number of community resources in the near future," Petures said. "When we considered a grant to proactively address this issue, Direction Home, which already provides a high level of service for older adults, was the clear choice to coordinate this effort." The grant aligns with the community foundation's new strategic direction of proactively addressing community needs, Petures added. Another priority that emerged from Akron Community Foundation's convenings was the need for centralized access to services and information, something Direction Home President and CEO Gary Cook said his organization is well-positioned to help create. "The network of organizations in Summit County caring for older adults is fantastic," Cook said. "We have all been working better together to help this population, but as we found with the convenings, the demand vastly outpaces supply." Of particular concern is the "gap population" of aging adults whose fixed incomes do not meet Medicaid eligibility. According to Cook, these seniors are at increased risk of not having access to subsidized services like transportation, food delivery and home health aides. While agencies like Mature Services and Catholic Charities currently serve this gap population, their resources are limited. The first step of this new project includes the coordination of a needs assessment to gauge pressing issues. In addition, several organizations are currently working on creating a shared process to coordinate the intake of Summit County seniors requesting services. "We have always wanted the resources to bring this issue forward," Cook said. "We are very happy that our partnership with Akron Community Foundation has allowed us to start to address these gaps in supports for those who need help the most but for whom it has limited availability." About Akron Community Foundation Celebrating 62 years of building community philanthropy, Akron Community Foundation embraces and enhances the work of charitable people who make a permanent commitment to the good of the community. In 1955, a $1 million bequest from the estate of Edwin Shaw established the community foundation. Currently, it is a philanthropic endowment of more than $201 million with a growing family of 560 funds established by charitable people and organizations from all walks of life. The community foundation and its funds welcome gifts of all kinds, including cash, bequests, stock, real estate, life insurance and retirement assets, just to name a few. To date, the community foundation's funds have awarded nearly $138 million in grants to qualified nonprofit organizations. For more information about Akron Community Foundation or to learn more about creating your own charitable fund, call 330-376-8522 or visit www.akroncf.org. -30- Tracy Burt Director of Marketing Akron Community Foundation 345 W. Cedar St., Akron, OH 44307 Phone: 330-436-5619 | Fax: 330-376-0202 email@example.com We embrace and enhance the work of charitable people who make a permanent commitment to the good of the community.