Monday, December 31, 2007

Elder Financial Abuse Discussed At MV Rotary Meeting

"Elderly abuse comes in many forms," Bea Stankard told the Merrimack Valley Rotary Club. Bea said that Elderly abuse is also the result of mishandling a person's funds.

Bea is a representative of the Elder Services of Merrimack Valley. She works for the organization's Meals On Wheels and Money Management Programs.

Bea told the Club about stories where people were handling seniors money but was actually sealing money from them. This included a niece that and elderly aunt was trusting but was actually writing checks to herself. She was eventually caught with the help of the Money Management Program.

She said that one of the services her agency provides is matches volunteers with elders to help them keep track of their day-to-day financial activities.

According the the Elder Services Web Page: "Household budgets, checkbook balancing and bill paying can become difficult due to poor eyesight, deteriorating health, mobility limitations or depression."

The Web page mentions two key points about the Money Management Program:

  • Volunteers assist low-income older adults with the tasks involved with routine bill paying, budgeting and check writing.

  • The Money Management Program is jointly sponsored by AARP and the Massachusetts Office of Elder Affairs.

Elder Services is a private, non-profit agency incorporated in 1974 to serve older residents who reside in the 23 cities and towns comprising the Merrimack Valley. They are federally designated as the Area Agency on Aging and manage the State Home Care Program.

If you have questions e-mail the agency at or write to Elder Services of the Merrimack Valley, 360 Merrimack St., Bld.5, Lawrence, MA 01843. 800-892-0890.

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