As we all work together to ensure the safety of family members, friends, and ourselves during this unprecedented time, it’s especially important to keep in mind older adults and other individuals with underlying health conditions. These community members are not only more susceptible to infection from the COVID-19 virus, but are also at greater risk of depression and anxiety due to social disconnection caused by widespread self-isolating measures.

As neighbors, it is our collective responsibility to assist each other to reduce exposure to the virus and to obtain the resources necessary to meet critical needs. Age Friendly South Portland would like to make residents aware of the Community Support and Resources directory established by the city, which offers a variety of ways that individuals of all ages can help and/or receive help during this time of need.

A few resources worth highlighting include:

Dedicated Resource Assistance Line: For those who require assistance with food pick-up and delivery, pharmacy services, transportation, childcare, and/or other needs as a result of the COVID-19 situation, the city has established a dedicated assistance telephone line at 207-347-4177 (Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) and an online webpage at https://www.southportland.org/community. Note: The webpage also includes links to important CDC information and videos regarding COVID-19 in a variety of languages, including Portuguese, Somali, Maay Maay, Kirundi, French and English.

Social Check-In Calls: For those who would like to receive routine phone calls from the city, they can sign up by calling 207-347-4177. Residents do not need to be a senior to qualify, and calls are not intended to serve as a wellness assessment or to give medical advice but rather as way to ask how people are doing and to make them aware of available supports and services.

General COVID-19 Information: For those who would like to receive additional information about COVID-19 and learn more about available resources throughout the state, they can call 2-1-1 (or 1-866-811-5695), text their ZIP code to 898-211, or email [email protected]

Age Friendly South Portland hopes that our neighbors of all ages are safe, healthy, and stay connected during this difficult time. To stay informed on city news, we encourage residents to follow the city’s Facebook page and to tune in to South Portland Television, which can be accessed via basic cable on Spectrum channels 1301 and 1302.

Chad Macleod is a member of the ad hoc South Portland Senior Implementation Steering Committee.

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