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We are pleased to announce that the Athens Community Council on Aging’s Retired & Senior Volunteer Program in partnership with ACC Leisure Services’ Lyndon House Arts Center is hosting the 37th Annual Harvest Festival. For the past three decades, the Harvest Festival has provided demonstrations of domestic skills and crafts of the 19th century as an intergenerational sharing of knowledge. School age children have enjoyed educational demonstrations weaving, broom-making, butter churning, knitting, crocheting, felt-making, quilting, storytelling, wood carving, and the making corn husk dolls, soap and pottery. There will be interactive arts and crafts, and students can observe farm animals and learn about their use and care. Tours of the historic Ware-Lyndon House (c. 1850) will also be available. Don’t miss this opportunity to enrich your students’ knowledge of history right in your own backyard!

There is no fee for the festival and all exhibits are free. Classes are encouraged to bring a lunch and have a picnic on the lawn under one of the many shade trees. If children wish to bring spending money, there will be light concessions as well as small souvenirs of the festival available for sale. We continue to provide this festival free of charge because we believe it is important for the youth of today to have a hands-on opportunity to learn about how things were done “way back when.”

The Harvest Festival will be held on Thursday, October 13, 2011 from 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. at both of our locations on Hoyt Street. We hope to see you there!

JENNIE DEESE OF ACCA RECIEVES COCA COLA HELPING HANDS AWARD

Pictured from left to right, John Stinchcomb, Speaker; Jennie Deese, 2011 Coca-Cola Helping Hands Award Recipient; Joe Cunningham, Athens Coca-Cola; and Mark Richt, head football coach at the University of Georgia

 ATHENS, Ga.— The University of Georgia Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame, Inc. held the 26thAnnual Awards Presentation at the Athens Country Club on April 18, 2011.  Jennie Deese received the Coca-Cola Helping Hand Award for her service to the Athens community through the Athens Community Council on Aging (ACCA). The Coca-Cola Award is presented to those “in the spirit of giving back to our community for selfless service, altruism and extending a helping hand to others.”

Jennie has worked in aging programs for more than 30 years.  She started her career as the Director of Social Services for Humana Hospital/Augusta and then moved to Atlanta to serve as an Ombudsman for Atlanta Legal Aid for 16 years. In 2002, she was the Director of the State Georgia Cares program and is currently the President and CEO of the ACCA.

The mission of the Athens Community Council on Aging is to promote a lifetime of wellness through engagement, advocacy, education and support.  Founded in 1967 by local citizens, ACCA is a non-profit 501 (c) 3 organization and aims to maintain and enrich the lives of older persons with 14 programs in 12 Northeast Georgia counties. ACCA’s programs enable older persons to live independently at home and offer opportunities for employment, volunteerism, and other activities. ACCA is a resource for education, information, referral, counseling, and general assistance.

Athens Community Council on Aging - Celebrate Volunteers 2011

Athens Community Council on Aging - Celebrate Volunteers 2011

Volunteers make the biggest difference in an organization like Athens Community Council on Aging and we have the best volunteers in the world (at least that’s what we think).  On Tuesday, June 21, we celebrated all of our volunteers with a Fiesta here at the council in the beautiful Harris Room.  We had chips, salsa, punch, decorations, door prizes, and I believe there were a couple of pinatas floating around.   It was “hot, hot, hot” (literally) as our air conditioning went out  and was getting repaired as the festivities were happening.  All that being said, it was a lot of fun and we want to say thank you again for all of the wonderful volunteers of ACCA that keep all of programs going strong.  Our volunteer award winners for 2011 are Caryl Sundland – Inspiration Award Winner, Carol Kurtz – ACCA Volunteer of the Year, Ladies of Color (L.O.C.) – Community Service Award Winner, Jo Mercer – David Levine Founders Award, and Homer Hector – Marilyn Gorman Award

Project GRAD Visits ACCA

Project GRAD Visits ACCA

Residents at the Athens Community Council on Aging recently got a surprise visit from Project GRAD students from the Atlanta Public School System (APS) who were taking part in the University of Georgia Summer Institute which is conducted through the Office of Institutional Diversity.  The three-week program gives the students an opportunity to learn more about college life while attending classes each day, along with information sessions with UGA faculty and staff.  In addition, the students have the experience of living in dorms and touring the campus and community.  The students, who are rising high school juniors, were able to visit ACCA as part of their volunteer community service day.  In addition to realizing that the residents were an energetic, and fun bunch, evidenced by an impromptu dance competition which took place, the students also helped with arts and crafts activities while also playing games and conversing with the residents.

“This was a great opportunity for our students and they walked away from this experience with an entirely different view than what they initially had in mind,”  Volunteer service coordinator Renaldo Stover said. “This experience is something the students won’t forget and I think it will motivate them to continue to be positive and volunteer in their respective communities when they return home.”

Ms. Senior Athens 2011

Annette Barfield, Ms. Senior Athens 2011, right after being crowned.

Athens Community Council on Aging is thrilled to have recently crowned the first ever Ms. Senior Athens.  Ms. Senior Athens will represent the vivaciousness of aging gracefully, both physically and mentally.  If you haven’t heard, the new Ms. Senior Athens is Mrs. Annette Barfield and below is just a little information to get you acquainted with her.  Throughout the next year, Ms. Senior Athens is going to keep us busy at ACCA as we try and keep you all updated on all of her activities here in the Northeast Georgia area.  Stay tuned…

Husband: H.C. “Buddy” Barfield
Children: 3
Grandchildren: 4
Great-Grandchildren: 2
Hobbies: Travel, adventure, ballroom dancing, gardening, sports.

“Throughout my life I have striven to give back more than I have taken. A healthy life is much like a gift; one that is better when shared. I have been blessed to give a part of my life to my church, school children of the community and those in need through volunteer activities. I sincerely believe that my physical and emotional life and health is a direct result of my faith; my volunteer efforts are by the grace of God. A healthy lifestyle can be enhanced by walking, exercise and eating right, as well as by sharing your gift of life through volunteering for others who are not as fortunate. My position in life in Athens, Ga., has been enhanced by my gift of good health, my marriage, my family, my church, and the community. I feel I have an obligation to share my talents and give back to my community through my work at Athens Regional Medical Center and St. Mary’s Hospice House. I am honored to be considered for Ms. Senior Athens and will work tirelessly to promote my lifetime of wellness by advocating engagement and support by example.”

-Annette Barfield, Ms. Senior Athens 2011, personal bio written for the pageant

Well, we continue to run 100 mph and have no plans to slow down.  So here’s just a quick update on what is going on in the Senior Center.  Tomorrow we are sending two vans of participants to the State Capitol for a rally to advocate to our elected officials to refrain from cutting funding to Home and Community Based Services.  We’ll be taking our new Flip video camera to capture some of the action.  We’ll have video available from our trip soon.

Social Networking computer classes have started and are being taught by our own Claire Boozer.  Photography classes to begin soon and are being taught by our own Wayne Bellamy.  Next week we begin arts programming funded by the Grassroots Arts Program and Georgia Council for the Arts.  The multi-session program is entitled “Beyond the Figleaf:  Clothing as Wearable Art”.  The next afternoon tea is coming up on 2/13/10 for “Daddy’s and Daughters”.  We are excited to begin a new exercise program for persons with Parkinson’s disease next month.  The class will be taught by Katie Porter who is the NEGA AAA Wellness Coordinator.

New Power Yoga classes have been added to Mondays and Wednesdays at 4:30 pm.  Our own Dee Dee Gaines is instructing.  Everyone is welcome.  AARP will be here to conduct Defensive Driving courses in February and March.  AARP will also be providing tax filing assistance each Thursday beginning 2/11/10 from 9am – 1pm.  Several trips are around the corner for the spring.  Register now as they are filling up.

Health Fair w/ARMC coming 4/14/10.  The Mobile Mammography van will be on-site along with various other screenings and health related information.  We are currently in discussions with several other organizations in an effort to establish new partnerships, programming, and volunteer experiences.  Stay tuned…

Chris Hill, ACC Senior Center Director

Several of us from the agency participated in a video shoot for the United Way annual meeting at Sanford Stadium on Wednesday, January 13th.  The premise of the video was that we were UGA football fans (which we are) cheering at a game in the 80’s when Kevin Butler was UGA’s placekicker.  Kevin was the Honorary Chair of the United Way Campaign in 2009.  It was a fun experience and really great to be in the stadium when it was empty.  Thanks to the United Way of Northeast Georgia for inviting us to participate.  It was a lot of fun.

Check some pictures and video on our website.  www.accaging.org