Re: “Our View: Loneliness is not just a holiday problem” (Dec. 23, Page A4):

We’d like to thank the Portland Press Herald Editorial Board for raising awareness about loneliness; it’s real, but it doesn’t have to be. Study after study indicates that socialization is the key component to longevity and quality of life for seniors.

During last year’s mayoral and City Council campaign forums, I raised the question, “Will you support a Portland Senior Center?” The responses were varied; many were surprised to learn Portland doesn’t have a Portland Senior Center. One mayoral candidate rang out, “Let’s build one!”

Yes, the city of Portland has elder services programs scattered around the city, including using the Barron Center. But while that’s better than nothing, it’s a far cry from the dynamic senior centers being run around the country.

We believe building a Portland Senior Center for the 50-plus community serves to help thousands of individuals and families throughout the Portland area. It would be many things to different people. Imagine all the senior programs and services under one roof! The benefits are endless and would serve to energize and support individuals through variety of different life stages and changes critical to healthy aging: maintaining independence, living happy and connected lives, making participants and the center itself a vibrant part of our city.

Join us. Let City Manager Jon Jennings, Mayor Kate Snyder and the Portland City Council know you support this endeavor. Its time has come.

Carol Schiller

Portland

Sally Trice

Portland

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