Oswego County Opportunities’ Senior Services Division received some much needed support this summer thanks to the Oswego County Youth Works Program.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â OCO’s Senior Services Division strives to enable seniors to be as independent as possible and continue living in their own homes.
To achieve this goal OCO’s Senior Services Division operates senior dining and activity centers Constantia, Fulton, Hannibal, Mexico, Oswego, Parish, Phoenix and Pulaski where seniors can share a lunchtime meal, socialize with other seniors and participate in a number of activities.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â In addition OCO’s Senior Services Division offers a meal program that delivers, on average, 1,000 meals each day to home bound seniors throughout Oswego County; a ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‹Å“Blizzard Bag’ program, that provides homebound seniors with an emergency food source in the event of inclement weather; and a ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‹Å“Warm-up Oswego County Seniors’ program that provides seniors with hand made quilts and afghans to help keep them warm this winter.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Home delivered meals and senior dining and activity centers are funded through the Oswego County Office for the Aging.
“Our Youth Works employees have been a plus for our division,” said Tracy Doherty, of OCO’s Senior Services Division.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â “With a tight budget and lots of seniors to serve, we are always in need of volunteers and extra hands.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Angelica and Tiffany have been doing a great job for us.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Their professionalism and commitment to their duties is commendable.”
For both Angelica Tickle, a sophomore at Cazenovia College majoring in environmental studies and Tiffany Waite, a senior at G. Ray Bodley High School in Fulton interested in pursuing nursing and psychology, their jobs at OCO’s Senior Division are providing them with much more than developing computer skills and gaining work experience.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â It has been an enjoyable, eye opening adventure that has allowed them to see seniors in a new way.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â In addition to doing a variety of office duties, Tickle and Waite have been assisting in packaging and delivering meals to seniors in the home delivered meal program.
“I enjoy meeting the seniors,” said Tickle.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â “When you deliver the meals and see their smiling faces it’s really rewarding.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â My favorite is Josie; I get to open her meal for her.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â She is adorable.”
“It’s nice to see the seniors and get to know them,” added Waite.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â “They’re fun.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â You really see them differently when you meet them and get to know their unique personalities.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Working with OCO’s Senior Services Division has been a great experience for me.”
Federally funded and operated locally by the Oswego County Department of Social Services, Employment and Training, Youth Works provides youth with a combination of work and education.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â The program matches youth with employers based upon the their interests and skills and the employer’s needs.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â The program is designed to provide participants with a mutually rewarding experience that benefits both the employee and the employer.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â For more information on the Youth Works program you may contact their office at 591-9074.
For more information on the many programs offered through OCO’s Senior Services Division, or to become a volunteer you may contact Tracy Doherty at 598-4712, ext. 1067.
OCO Inc. is a private, non-profit agency that has been supporting communities throughout Oswego County since 1966.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â OCO, Inc. is a United Way of Greater Oswego county Member Agency.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â For more information on OCO visit their web site at www.oco.org.