Responses Strong On Survey Of Senior Needs, Interests

A first of its kind survey to assess the needs and interests of Newtown seniors is getting a great reception according to Commission on Aging member LeReine Frampton.

“The surveys just started going out by mail, and we already have 122 back in the first five days,” Ms Frampton said.

Newtown residents age 60 or older are being asked to participate in the survey, which started going out earlier in August to all registered voters in this population. The mailing also included a return envelope, which likely improved the speed and rate of responses.

Participants have been asked to send back the survey by August 31.

The brief six-question survey includes questions related to demographics, emergency support, issues important to seniors, services provided by the town, and programs and activities that recipients would like to see offered. Responses are anonymous, though participants can identify themselves if they wish.

Survey data will influence current and future senior programs, including those for the new senior center located in the community center to be built with a grant from General Electric to Newtown.

The senior survey was designed and administered by the Newtown Commission on Aging (COA) with the support of Newtown’s Senior Services, the municipal agent for the Elderly/Social Services, the registrar of voters, and the Senior Action Committee.

The COA’s mission is to study and identify the needs of senior residents and develop or coordinate programs and grants to meet those needs. This is the first COA survey of senior residents.  

 Newtown’s senior population — more than 18 percent of the total – will continue to grow as more baby boomers mature. The COA would like to ensure that senior programs continue to address the needs and interests of all seniors.

“This was a true community effort. We received support not only from the town, but also from students in the Newtown High School Transitional Program, who helped assemble the surveys, and volunteers from various community groups as well as commissioners who helped with all the production work,” said Curt Symes, chairman of the Commission on Aging.

Residents who need assistance completing their survey may contact the Social Services Department at 203-270-4330. Similarly, seniors who are not registered, but wish to participate in the survey may call 203-948-4253 to obtain a survey form.

The Newtown Commission on Aging is an organization of 12 appointed volunteers — nine commissioners and three alternate commissioners — whose mission is to study and identify the needs of senior (age 60 plus) residents and recommend programs and grants to meet those needs.

For more information visit the Town of Newtown website newtown-ct.gov under “Boards and Commissions.”

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