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Barb began participating at our Lakeland Activity Center for Seniors in July of 2016. Having participated in senior center in Texas, she well knows the benefits of staying active and engaged. Barb sought out a senior center soon after moving to Lakeland and found us. She was surprised to find that there was not a larger center supported and operated by the city as had been her experience elsewhere. One of the first activities that Barb got involved with was line-dancing, and she still attends this class faithfully today. Exercise, cards, a women’s support group (meeting bi-weekly), group activities like Bingo, health & wellness education, presentations, and the chance to socialize with friends she has met are other reasons she attends 3+ times each week. She does occasionally participate in the Fellowship Dining program.

While Barb is on a fixed income, she manages her finances well, and can meet her daily needs. She is healthy and active. What Senior Wellness Services adds to her well-being is structured socialization, exercise, nutrition, education, and networking opportunities that help her maintain her health and independence. In addition to attending as a participant, Barb became a volunteer, allowing her to grow more and give back to a program that she enjoys and double her benefits. She was a lead volunteer at one of our mobile sites and called Bingo once weekly at our main site in Lakeland prior to Covid forcing us to put congregate activities on hold for a year. Currently, Barb has resumed volunteering and leads exercise at our St. Joseph’s Catholic Church site, 2-3 times weekly and assists with organizing and leading other activities. We are very grateful for her willingness to improve our services, and happy that she finds this beneficial on her end, as well.

Barb says, “I love being at the center and enjoy all the activities and the friends I have met. As a volunteer, I also have the chance give back ”

Barb is a great example of the diversity of our Senior Wellness Services programs as we meet the needs of a wide cross-section of the older adult population in our community with a common need to avoid isolation, socialize and network with a group that has like interests, stay as fit and healthy as possible and continue to remain independent for as long as possible.