Northwest Aging Association will be celebrating its 30th Anniversary of serving northwest Iowa on Wednesday, July 20, 2005, from 9:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. at the Central Office, 2 Grand Avenue, Spencer. The celebration will begin with a visit by the Spencer Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors at 9:30 a.m. The public is invited.
Northwest Aging Association is an area agency on aging in the state of Iowa established under the Older Americans Act and serves the nine counties in northwest Iowa of Buena Vista, Clay, Dickinson, Emmet, Lyon, O'Brien, Osceola, Palo Alto, and Sioux. The agency is governed by an elected volunteer Board of Directors and employs over 30 persons throughout the nine counties. Board members are Don Linnan, Buena Vista County; J. P. Greer, Clay County; Perry Martinson, Dickinson County; Wayne West, Emmet County; Ken Barker, Lyon County; Paul Wittrock, O'Brien County; Harold Dawson, Osceola County; Dee Pyle, Palo Alto County; and Mabel Mantel, Sioux County. Cynthia Beauman is the executive director. Hundreds of local community volunteers, without whom the agency would not be able to fulfill its mission, also assist with the programs of the agency.
Area agencies on aging are authorized to serve person who are 60 years of age and older as well as caregivers for persons 60-plus. Some of the services provided by the agency include the congregate meal programs (Dinner Date), home-delivered meals, case management for the frail elderly, advocacy, and caregiver support. The agency receives funding from the federal and state government, as well as the nine counties served, and individual contributions.
The agency has experienced exceptional growth in the demand for services over the past five years as well as increased requirements for reporting and tracking outcome measures for the persons served. The Senior Living Program which expanded the availability of home and community-based services has been responsible for providing services in the home for individuals who would otherwise need to go to an institutional setting. The National Family Caregiver Support Program recognizes the value of the informal caregiver network and provides an array of support services for these unsung heroes who save the healthcare system millions of dollars by their efforts and dedication.
It has been projected that over the next twenty years the 60-plus population in Iowa will grow by 56 percent. The agency continually monitors trends and programming in order to better serve the current need as well as prepare for the future demand.