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In celebration of Mental Health Awareness Month, Clinical & Support Options (CSO) will be hosting the 17th Annual Mental Health and Wellness Fair at the Energy Park in Greenfield on May 15, from 10 to 2 p.m. Featuring CSO’s very own Green River House and Quabbin House Clubhouse members, the fair will be an afternoon of music, singing, poetry, and testimonials by members to highlight mental health wellness and recovery. Genoa Pharmacy and Webber & Grinnell Insurance are major sponsors of this year’s fair, along with the Greenfield Police Department.

The fair started in 2002 to bring awareness and information to the community about mental health and recovery. The Clubs’ membership, supported by CSO, have continued this tradition annually as an opportunity to dispel the stigma around mental health and to encourage people in seeking support and spotlighting those agencies that are available to assist. This year the membership has chosen the theme “End Stigma, Dance to the Beat of Your Own Drum,” in an effort to continue to spread an anti-stigma message about mental health treatment and recovery.

Local mental health and wellness providers are welcome to present their materials and programming. In addition to local community providers sharing information, there will be a food vendor, fun raffles, and family activities.

Join CSO for an afternoon of excitement and awareness! All are welcome at Energy Park on May 15, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. For questions or more information on how you can be a part of this wonderful annual event, please contact The Green River House at 413-772-2181.

Seniors eating together at the Petersham Luncheon ClubEnjoy a nutritious meal at your local senior center, dining center, or if you can't get to one, call LifePath about getting a meal delivered to your home.

May 13 – 17, 2019

In celebration of Older Americans Month in May, the Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs (EOEA) and LifePath would like to extend an invitation to participate in the First Annual Massachusetts Malnutrition Awareness Week.

Poor nutrition is common among older adults, especially those who have been hospitalized, but it also affects elders who live at home. Malnutrition affects 20 – 50% of patients admitted to hospitals and often leads to complications pre- and post-surgery, as well as longer hospital and rehabilitation stays for people with chronic illness.

Risk factors of malnutrition include poor appetite, low weight and unintentional weight loss (although it can affect overweight people as well), loss of muscle and fat, bone loss contributing to falls and fractures, and not enough healthy food available due to lack of money to afford food and not being able to get to the store or prepare meals.

Would you know how to identify the signs of malnutrition in a family member or friend?

We invite you to attend one of LifePath’s sessions to help identify malnutrition. Presentations by Karen Lentner, MA, RD, LDN, LifePath’s Nutritionist, will include information about the signs of malnutrition and how to prevent it; individual malnutrition risk screenings; healthy diet information; healthy snacks; and more.

“Malnutrition affects 20 – 50% of patients admitted to hospitals and often leads to complications pre- and post-surgery.”

LifePath will host three sessions on Malnutrition Awareness:

Registration is requested but not required at each session.

Malnutrition Awareness Week™ is a mark of the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN). Used with permission from ASPEN.

Raeann LeBlancRaeann G. LeBlanc, DNP, ANP/GNP-BC, CHPN, University of Massachusetts AmherstRaeann G LeBlanc is an Adult Gerontology Nurse Practitioner, Clinical Professor, and Researcher at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Raeann can be reached This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or at 413-545-6630 if you would like to discuss this topic or share a question or idea.

Relationships matter to our health, but how exactly does this change over time, and when does it matter most? These are questions to answer in harnessing the health benefit of our social relationships.

“Key findings from this study were that positive social relationships resulted in improved self-care activities, improved mental health, and vitality.”

Research conducted at the University of Massachusetts Amherst College of Nursing, funded through a grant by the Rehabilitation Nurse Foundation, explored the influence of social relationships on health. A central aspect of this research was to better understand social relationships' influence on living with and managing multiple chronic conditions, and the influence of close social relationships on individual care practices and health outcomes.

This study was specifically focused on the experience of persons age 65 and older managing chronic health conditions and their relationships with persons close to them. This study took place between 2017-2018. Participants lived with many different conditions (an average of 10). These top conditions included osteoarthritis, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, chronic pain, thyroid disorders, depression, cancer, anxiety, hearing loss, and diabetes. The average age of participants was 74 years old and ranged from 65-93. Interestingly, in this study, older age was associated with better perceived overall health.

Two senior women laughing togetherAmong the 89 Massachusetts residents who participated in this study, which included a lengthy interview, 60% of them lived alone and had an average of seven close relationships, most of whom were friends that lived nearby. Interactions among close relationships were frequently daily and often on the telephone.

Key findings from this study indicated that positive social relationships resulted in improved self-care activities, improved mental health, and vitality. Support from social relationships also positively influenced a sense of control and dignity. Positive social support resulted in improved self-care and improved mental health, social function, and emotional role.

For some, social relationships might need to be something to build. For others, it may just mean reaching out to be sure you are seeing those people who are important to you and asking for support in what is important to your health (sharing a meal, taking a walk together, sharing in a talk). There is no secret number as to how many close contacts in our lives will make us healthy, nor how many interactions improve our health. Notice what you need, and seek out those you find supportive.

Your local councils on aging can be a great place to visit to meet new friends, participate in an activity, and share a meal together. For a list of Councils on Aging nearest you, visit Mass.gov or call LifePath at 800-732-4636.

Kids at the Walkathon having a piggyback rideWe offer our thanks to everyone who came together in support of LifePath’s nutrition program for our 27th annual Meals on Wheels Walkathon this past Saturday.

The generosity of gifts and spirit from sponsors, walkers, donors, and volunteers ensures all elders who need the support of Meals on Wheels and congregate meals receive the balanced nutrition, socialization, and wellness check they seek. We offer special thanks to lead sponsor Greenfield Savings Bank for their thoughtful generosity as they matched dollars raised by new walkers, encouraging more participation, raising more money, and resulting in more impact.

Though we are still counting, we are grateful for all efforts put forth in support of local elders in this way. Thanks to YOU—community members, local businesses and organizations—LifePath is better equipped to provide this vital program.

You’ve made a difference. Thank you so much.

On Tuesday, June 4, from 4 to 5 p.m., join us for the Walkathon Thank You Party at LifePath, 101 Munson Street, Greenfield. Awards will be presented to winning teams in various categories as we enjoy refreshments and fellowship together.

To RSVP or for more information, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 413-773-5555 x2225, or 978-544-2259 x2225. Click here to learn more about Meals on Wheels or to make a donation in support of the program.

Social Security and OIG Alert Public About Telephone Impersonation Scheme

Senior man holding a cell phoneThe Social Security Administration (SSA) and its Office of the Inspector General (OIG) launched a joint Public Service Announcement (PSA) campaign addressing a nationwide telephone impersonation scheme. Social Security and the OIG continue to receive reports from across the country about fraudulent phone calls from people falsely claiming to be Social Security employees. Calls can even “spoof” Social Security’s national customer service number as the incoming number on the caller ID. The new PSAs will air on TV and radio stations across the country to alert the public to remain vigilant against potential fraud.

“We urge you to always be cautious and to avoid providing sensitive information such as your Social Security number or bank account information to unknown people over the phone or Internet,” said Nancy A. Berryhill, Acting Commissioner of Social Security. “If you receive a call and are not expecting one, you must be extra careful – you can always get the caller’s information, hang up, and contact the official phone number of the business or agency the caller claims to represent. Do not reveal personal data to a stranger who calls you.”

“Do not reveal personal data to a stranger who calls you.”

Social Security employees do occasionally contact people—generally those who have ongoing business with the agency—by telephone for business purposes. However, Social Security employees will never threaten a person or promise a Social Security benefit approval, or increase, in exchange for information. In those cases, the call is fraudulent and people should not engage with the caller. If a person receives these calls, he or she should report the information to the OIG Fraud Hotline at 1-800-269-0271 or online.

“These calls appear to be happening across the country, so we appreciate SSA’s partnership in this national public outreach effort,” said Gail S. Ennis, the Inspector General for the Social Security Administration. “Our message to the public is simply this: If you or someone you know receives a questionable call claiming to be from SSA or the OIG, just hang up.”

The new PSA addressing the telephone impersonation scheme is available online, or view it here: