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Did you know?
April 7, 2015
In South Carolina, approximately 18% of seniors face food insecurity. This means that in Richland County, 8,000 seniors go hungry every day, along with 2,000 seniors in the City of Columbia. South Carolina has risen from 10th worst in the country to 7th worst in terms of senior hunger and food insecurity. Food insecure seniors are 60% more likely to experience depression, and 52% more likely to report a heart attack. Both social isolation and loneliness are associated with increased mortality in seniors. Approximately 6,400 seniors in Columbia and Richland County live alone and are at risk for isolation and loneliness.
These are not facts for which Richland County or Columbia want to be known. Indeed, it will take bold steps to improve these statistics.
Senior Resources can help Columbia and Richland County change these embarrassing statistics. For 48 years, Senior Resources, Inc. has been providing the programs and services that empower Richland County seniors to remain in their homes and in their communities. We provide for individuals’ basic needs, including food, personal care, and social interaction.
You may not know that Senior Resources was established as a non-profit by Richland County in 1967 to meet the needs of its senior citizens. From our inception, Richland County has provided funding to assist us in serving seniors. Earlier this year, Richland County Council asked Senior Resources to submit a budget of funding necessary to meet the needs of county seniors, especially those in unincorporated areas. The funding necessary to meet the needs of Richland County’s seniors is almost $1.7 million dollars, even after all the grants and private donations we receive. While we are grateful for the funding we receive from Richland County, it is only about 25% of what is needed to meet the needs of seniors in the county. Our funding from the City of Columbia is significantly less than that from the county, and has been less stable than county funding. We have also made a request from the City for approximately $419,000, since about 25% of Richland County’s seniors reside in the City.
What can you do?
To help us change these embarrassing statistics, contact your Richland County and/or Columbia City Council representative today and tell them to fund senior services in our community. While we know our budget requests are large, so are the needs. With your help, we can work to reduce the number of seniors in our community who are isolated and hungry.
Don’t know who your representative on Council is?
http://richlandonline.com/Government/CountyCouncil.aspx Click on Find My District.