Teaneck High School senior Hajra Mateen learned an important lesson in empathy this summer, one that all people caring for older adults need to follow.
Just because someone has reached an advanced age doesn’t mean he or she has the same needs or desires as
(Courtesy of the Jewish Link of New Jersey) American household demographics constantly change. With kids grown and moved out, many adults are considering remodeling to meet their future needs. This has inspired the idea of aging in place, meaning the desire to have a high quality of life in your home as you get older. In the United States, it's
Walking. It’s such an essential part of life that we have an endless supply of clichés about it.
We can walk a fine line, a tightrope, or a mile in someone else’s shoes. When we’re younger, so many things seem easy - a cakewalk, you might say. A walk in the park. A walk down the aisle. Even a walk on the wild side.
Age-Friendly Teaneck is proud to sponsor the Teaneck International Film Festival’s showing of an old classic with a new, or some might say, older twist.
My Annie Hall is a senior citizen version of the Woody Allen favorite. The directors, 29-year-old Matt Starr and 25-year-old Ellie Sachs, received Allen’s blessing on the remake, which stars seniors from Lenox Hill Neighborhood House in New York City.
“We are delighted to sponsor a film that celebrates the talents of senior citizens and demonstrates the value of a relationship between young and old.” said Jacqueline Kates, Project Coordinator of Age-Friendly Teaneck.
This half-hour feature will be shown at the 13th annual Teaneck International Film Festival on Sunday, November 4, followed by a panel discussion with the two directors, Starr and Sachs, and the lead actors, 94-year-old Harry B. Miller (in the role of Alvy Singer) and 73-year-old Shula Chernick (playing Annie).
Also joining in what is sure to be a lively discussion is New York Times writer John Leland, author of the bestselling book Happiness Is a Choice You Make: Lessons From a Year Among the Oldest Old.
In March, Leland wrote an article about the young filmmakers and its senior citizen stars, describing how Starr and Sachs felt they “had new friends and surrogate grandparents,” by the time the final scene was shot.
Leland’s article created a buzz, and multiple print and television media have since run features about this story of young and old working together and learning from each other.
TIFF Executive Director Jeremy Lentz says he is thrilled to have this movie on the 2018 program, and to welcome these guests to Teaneck.
For more information, visit the directors’ websites: www.matt- starr.com and www.elliesachs.com.
Tickets go on sale Oct. 1, and the time of the showing and details about venues and other films at TIFF 2018 will be posted on the website: teaneckfilmfestival.org.
The nest is empty and you’re looking for more ways to feel connected to your community. Age-Friendly Teaneck suggests volunteering for programs that help keep older adults healthy and socially engaged. Here is a list of programs and volunteer jobs to consider:
Help with exercise, entertainment and activities
Jewish Family and Children’s Services of Northern New Jersey
Friendly visits, meal delivery, and more
Helping Hands Food Pantry
Pantry staff/ office help/ donation pick-ups
201-837-9090(x 1825), email@example.com
Friendly visits/grocery shopping/ errands
Help with minor home repairs/chores
To learn about more opportunities, click here for the Bergen Volunteer Center!
A simple “Good Morning” can start someone’s day off right.
The Teaneck Fire Department believes it can also save a life – at least in the case of an elderly or disabled resident living on their own.
For more than 30 years, Teaneck firefighters have been placing “Good Morning Wake Up” calls to residents with health concerns. These well-being checks are made between 8 and 9 a.m. daily, 365 days a year. They are usually short, friendly conversations, but they can be very revealing. “Sometimes you can pick up that something is wrong from the sound of someone’s voice,” said Lt. David Barrett.
If a resident says they aren’t feeling well, or if they fail to answer the first call or a second follow-up one placed five minutes later, the dispatcher will send a unit to the house to check on them.
Over the years, the department’s responders have discovered residents who had fallen or were suffering a medical problem, and their intervention helped avert a more serious crisis.
Since its creation in 1985, participation has varied and there are currently only 21 Teaneck residents signed up, a very low number considering that senior citizens live alone in 11 percent of Teaneck households.
On one call Firefighter William Lynn made one recently, there was a bit of excitement – but the good kind. The woman told him he wouldn’t need to call for the remainder of the week because she was going out-of-town to visit her newly born first grandchild.
“Congratulations,” Lynn said. “Enjoy the trip.” Lynn said he’s gotten to know a bit about some of the people on the other end of the line, and a few like to do chat some mornings.
Those who enroll in the program receive a home safety inspection and are asked to provide emergency contact information and details about any medical conditions that emergency responders would need to know. After several years of enrollment, the residents are usually re-visited by Lt. Barrett or Captain Rich Burchell (the two program managers), who update their information if needed and also re-inspect their homes. The fire department also has used grant money to replace smoke detectors in homes that needed them.
If you think this service would help you or someone you know in Teaneck, please call the fire department at 201-837-2085 and ask to speak to Lt. Barrett or Capt. Burchell.
The waiting list for a 75-unit subsidized senior apartment building called The Glenwood at Leonia will be accepting new names for the first time in more than a decade.
There are currently no available units in the building, but the Leonia Retirement Housing Corporation typically sees about four apartments turn over each year. At present, there are only a few names left on the building’s waiting list, which was last opened for new applications in 2007.
The corporation will add 100 new names to the bottom of the existing list by conducting an application lottery.
To be eligible, at least one member of the household must be at least 62 years old at the time of application, with incomes of no more than $51,550 for a single person and no more than $58,900 for two people. Rents are income-based.
Applications are available to be picked up during a four-day period at the offices of the Leonia Retirement Housing Corp.
Tuesday, July 10 through Friday, July 13
9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
270 Glenwood Ave.
Completed applications must be returned by July 30, after which a lottery will be held to determine the 100 names to be placed on the list. All applicants will be informed in writing about whether they secured a spot.
Anyone with additional questions may call the Leonia Retirement Housing Corp. at 201-947-9779.
Age-Friendly Teaneck will continue to pass along information about affordable senior housing opportunities as we learn of them.
additional resources that will come from the alliance with the AARP and the more than 260 communities around the country that have also joined. The township and Age-Friendly Teaneck initiative have worked together on a number of efforts, from pledging to make streets more pedestrian-friendly to disseminating a resource guide and promoting key services to older adults.
The mayor said that he and the rest of the Township Council are committed to addressing challenges faced by older adults and would welcome any suggestions on how to assist elderly residents who don’t have families nearby or other needed support.
“As mayor, I have seen that even something like getting your snow shoveled becomes a big deal for older residents,” Hameeduddin said.
Like most American suburbs, Teaneck is a town whose homes, streets and public spaces were designed primarily with an eye toward the families with young children who moved here in droves in the 1950s and 60s. And like most American suburbs, Teaneck is seeing its population age rapidly, with nearly 17 percent of the township’s 40,000 residents now over 65.
and experience, bringing a wide range of perspectives to their communal efforts to make Teaneck an easier place to grow old.
The number of communities in the AARP network has doubled in the past year, said state AARP Director Stephanie Hunsinger, before presenting the mayor with a certificate commemorating Teaneck’s membership in the network.
In addition to gaining access to aging experts and other professional resources, participating communities can share ideas and strategies, Hunsinger said. “They can talk about what worked and best practices, and also about what didn’t work.”
AARP surveys show that vast percentages of older adults would prefer to remain living in their communities as they age.
“People want to stay where they’ve raised their families,” Hunsinger said.
Teaneck joins Princeton and Montclair as the only New Jersey communities in this nationwide network. The AARP network was launched in April 2012 and operates under the auspices of the World Health Organization's Age-Friendly Cities and Communities Program.
Launched in early 2016 with funding and organizational support from the Henry and Marilyn Taub Foundation, Age-Friendly Teaneck has already been working in partnership with other local communities with similar organizations.
Teaneck’s entry into the AARP not only greatly expands the number of communities with which Teaneck can share ideas and information but it also cements the partnership between Age-Friendly Teaneck and the local leaders who govern and manage the township, which is the key to making any successful and lasting changes, said Julia Stoumbos, program director for the Taub Foundation’s aging-in-place programs.
Age-Friendly Teaneck Project Director Elizabeth Davis and Project Coordinator Jackie Kates joined the mayor and manager in receiving the membership certificate, with both pledging to continue their cooperation.
“I think we’ve accomplished a lot, and we have a lot more to work on and we’re excited to work with all of you,” Davis said.
To learn more about Age-Friendly Teaneck, visit our website: agefriendlyteaneck.org
To learn about the network and participating communities, click https://www.aarp.org/livable-communities/network-age-friendly-communities/info-2014/member-list.html
Four Teaneck High School students are going to spend four weeks this summer learning about the different opportunities in the field of geriatrics.
The four students, who were selected from nearly two dozen applicants, will alternate their time between three different providers of elder care in Teaneck - Bright Side Manor assisted living residence, Homewatch CareGivers of Bergen County and Jewish Family and Children's Services of Northern New Jersey.
The opportunity, which comes with a $1,000 stipend, will expose the students to a variety of career paths, with the hope that some of those young people will go into these expanding fields. Within a dozen years, one in five Americans will be over 65, and the country will need an additional 3.5 million health professionals who specialize in taking care of older adults, according to the Eldercare Workforce Alliance.
That’s doctors and nurses, of course, but also social workers, physical therapists, activity coordinators, food-service directors, elder law attorneys, administrators and many other professions.
Age-Friendly Teaneck thinks too few young people are encouraged to pursue these paths, and many may shy away, wrongly perceiving that time spent with older adults will leave them depressed instead of inspired.
Teaneck’s empty-nest population grew sharply this millennium.
Nearly 4,700 households - or about 35 percent of the township’s total - have at least one person over age 65, and nearly a third of those senior-citizen householders live alone, according to the latest U.S. Census Bureau estimates.
The census bureau’s 2012-2016 American Community Survey offers a lot of important clues to how the needs of township residents might change in the next few decades.
Who We Are
Age-Friendly Teaneck formed in 2016 with this mission in mind: A great place to grow up should be a great place to grow old.