[SENIOR MOMENTS] What’s So Special About a Senior Center?

The Griffith Park Adult Community Center (GPACC) is celebrating its 9th year with our Spring Faire (see our ad on this page). We are, of course, raising funds for the center. But far more important is introducing the center to our community. We want the community to know us and to see our benefits.

In 1999 Lia Lomedico, a Silver Lake resident, questioned why there were no adult activities at the Silver Lake Recreation Center. Armed with a petition of 67 signers, the Silver Lake Senior Club began its journey.

Because the facility had space limitations, our activities had to be limited. As our membership grew, we realized we had to advocate for a space of our own.

With the help of former Los Angeles City Councilmember Tom LaBonge, portable offices used during the four-year Observatory remodeling in the 2000s were reconfigured into a senior center. GPACC opened its doors in 2008. The Silver Lake Senior Club became the GPAC Club and began its partnership with the center.

With a yearly membership of over 600 and more than 30 ongoing activities, the club supports GPACC by raising funds for its activities and the environment, organizing monthly trips, recruiting volunteers and members and distributing a monthly newsletter.

Today, we know the over-65 population is growing rapidly. But living longer doesn’t always come with a healthy quality of life.

According to Jonathan Fielding, retired director of Los Angeles County Dept. of Public Health, we have concentrated too much on sickness care and not enough on wellness and prevention.

Fielding suggests we increase our education on healthy living, environmental issues that impact our health, increase supports to strengthen families to care for each other and provide more access for socialization.

From my point-of-view, senior community centers can be a vital asset for these goals, especially when you consider isolation can have a more detrimental effect on a person’s wellbeing than a chronic health condition.

Those of us who come to GPACC know how important it is to our wellbeing as we age. It is an antidote for isolation. It is where we can “hang out,” eat a nutritious meal, participate in an interesting activity, discover resources and make friends.

We want to share that at our Spring Faire Saturday, May 13th. Join us.

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