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Independence Day

Barbara Bodzin, Executive DirectorBarbara Bodzin, Executive DirectorWhen most people think of the 4th of July, they think of fireworks and flags and this country’s freedom from British rule. For me, Independence Day raises thoughts of self-determination and the ability to live an independent life. Our right to independence should not be impacted as we age, we should be able to enjoy equal opportunity to gainful employment, to continue in our right to determine where and how we want to live, and, if we need assistance, to determine who will provide the care.

Sadly, ageism continues to be a tolerated form of social bias, evidenced in our attitudes, our language, and our stereotypes. As is the case with other forms of discrimination, internalized ageism oftentimes impacts our self-perception, devaluing ourselves as less of a person, with diminished autonomy, especially when we need to look to others for assistance. Our mission at LifePath is to combat the influences of ageism and to hold and honor the values and preferences of those we serve.

LifePath staff work with individuals and their families to help determine needs and assist the individual to make informed decisions regarding the type of care which best meets their personal preferences. 

At LifePath, we listen first, and then help each person find the best options for their unique needs. We assist older adults and persons with disabilities maintain independence and quality of life in their own homes and communities. We help caregivers to find relief and help loved ones to choose the right path. We have been doing this for 46 years and will continue to be there, creating new programs to help support and foster independence. Our Information and Caregiver Resource Center is the gateway to our organization, where Resource Consultants provide guidance to help the caller navigate the wide array of resources, services, and programs available.  

LifePath staff work with individuals and their families to help determine needs and assist the individual to make informed decisions regarding the type of care which best meets their personal preferences. In-home service options provide the support needed to manage daily activities, so individuals can maintain their independence and remain in their own home or move into the home of a caregiver. Our consumer-directed care programs offer individuals the opportunity to choose and hire their own caregiver.

We are excited to have established Franklin County and the North Quabbin as an Age- and Dementia-Friendly Community, a community-led effort that aims to bring about policy and systems-level change to make more liveable towns and strive to better meet the needs of their older residents by considering the environmental, economic, and social factors that influence their health and well-being. 

The 4th of July is a celebration of the Declaration of Independence, declaring that the 13 American colonies were no longer subject to the monarchy and were now united, free, and independent states. Independence Day is a day to affirm this to ourselves. We, the people, have the right to age in place and to self-determination. Stand up to ageism/ableism and say, “I am in control of my life and my destiny and I am going to live my best, independent life.”  LifePath will be right beside you.