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Social Work Students + CARR = An Age-Friendly San Diego
CARR's recent project Long-Term Care Housing for an Age-Friendly San Diego: A Review & Assessment of Assisted Living Accessibility researched the availability and affordability of assisted living in San Diego's 39 communities. The results for South Bay demonstrated the community has one bed for every 247 seniors 65+ and 42% of the 65+ population as unable to afford the median lifetime cost of assisted living care ($88,000). At the close of the project, CARR partnered with a group of SDSU graduate-level social work students to leverage the results and recommendations of the project into coursework for the team's Community Organizing and Problem Solving course, SW 758.
Upon meeting with CARR, this talented group of women quickly understood CARR's "interest in discovering community solutions through research to help seniors of all income levels age-in-place" on their own terms. Using CARR's plan to partner with Serving Seniors and facilitate focus groups, the team interviewed seniors at the St. Charles Nutrition Center. Themes emerging from the interviews guided the team's research and the ultimate creation of the potential for an intergenerational pilot program for CARR to administer called "Living Together". Going forward CARR will be looking for grant funding to implement this innovative program that would directly address "the emotional and instrumental support needs" of South Bay's seniors.
CARR would like to personally thank Joseph Gavin, Director of Integrated Services at Serving Seniors and Melissa Viramontes, HDM/Nutrition Site Coordinator for Serving Seniors for their assistance in coordinating the focus groups, as well as the nutrition center attendees who shared their stories with us. CARR also owes a big thank you to Jennifer Cosio, Executive Director of SDSU's Consensus Organizing Center, and the entire team of students -- Kelsie Nuno, Katrina Pimental, Ada Rivapalacio, Karen Rojas and Meagan Wallace, all of who are also deserving of congratulations on their recent graduation. (CARR wishes you the best of luck!)