Longtime resident Cosi Fabian posed the question: We are the generation of community and communes, but where is our senior center? Where is our community of seniors in the Haight?
Prompted by Cosi’s call to action, the first organizing meeting of Haight Ashbury elders came together at Park Branch library on July 28th. The meeting was co-facilitated by HANC board member Christin Evans. The group was asked two simple questions: What are you doing now? What would you be interested in doing? The discussion focused on areas of need and interest among the areas seniors.
With the majority of the neighborhood’s retirees living at home instead of senior living centers and with the lack of a senior day center, Park Branch librarian Anne Lane said that the library was interested in providing more robust programming and had some funds to do so.
Ideas which rose to the top of the list among the attendees included:
- Forming a Haight Ashbury Seniors email listserv – to share information and upcoming events that might be easily shared amongst local seniors
- Lecture Series targeted for seniors – The group was interested in inviting the Department of Aging to hold an informational session to learn more about city services offered and to also create a lecture series of ongoing program that may be of specific interest to seniors (specific topics suggested included making end of life decisions, understanding tenant rights and digital assistance)
- Arts & Crafts Projects – Strong interest in organizing a regular get together of artistically inclined foks where people might bring their own projects (knitting, painting), and have facilitated pottery or other craft projects taught by an art instructor
- Singing or Play Reading Groups – several folks were interested in a regular get together for singing or reading aloud plays (after which the group might then go to a performance together)
- Other regular groups for exercise/zumba dance, discussion of current events, meet up with street kids (and possibly a joint activity)
The next scheduled get together is Tuesday, August 23rd at 6-7 pm at Park Branch library. Area seniors and anyone interested in senior issues are welcome to attend.