B.A.S.A. is Helping Out Seniors in Our Area
“We work together to really make a difference.”
Theresa and Lori are a part of Bay Area Senior Advocates— commonly known as B.A.S.A. It’s a networking group of agencies in the greater Grand Traverse area, that are dedicated to representing *the best* support and services for our seniors.
“We have 73 members right now. So we represent for profit and non-profit agencies…and we have attorneys, we have financial advisors, we have housing directors, we have social service clubs, senior centers, the commissions on aging.”
Both women are part of two of the many agencies that help our growing elderly population every day.
Theresa Kerry, Co-Chair of B.A.S.A. says, “I work for Catholic Human Services and I’m the Director of the Foster Grandparent and Senior Companion Programs. We bring on seniors who are 55 years of age or older to work in the communities. Foster grandparents are placed at sites with children so mentoring, tutoring. And then senior companions are primarily placed with other seniors in the community. Getting them to doctors appointments, grocery shopping.”
Lori Wells, also the CO-Chair of B.A.S.A. tells us, “I’m the community outreach director for Pace North. So people who are trying to avoid nursing homes, we provide the support and services necessary for them to live independently at home. So we can provide medical management, transportation, primary care provision.”
Being part of B.A.S.A., Lori and Theresa see first hand that many times, people struggle unnecessarily– especially older adults — because they don’t know that there are resources to help them improve the quality of their life.
“We in all, as providers of the senior network, have really realized how much loneliness and isolation of our seniors plays such an impact on their health, mental wellness, and just their self-care,” says Theresa.
“The issues that we saw facing seniors, 25, 30 years ago, are still issues facing seniors. We still need affordable housing for seniors, we still need better transportation for seniors we still need caregivers…just knowing that there is a place to start the conversation, and those agencies will get them in touch with the many providers that are out there,” says Lori.
And the Bay Area Senior Advocates want the surrounding communities to know that they’re the right people to go to for any kind of services that seniors are looking for.
Lori says, “We know the person in the other end of the line. We know not just the agency to call, we know the person to call.”
“If you’re over 60, and you’re dealing with a chronic illness or struggling with being independent at home, there are services in this community to help you and there’s no reason to struggle unnecessarily.”