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Palm Coast Parks & Recreation Adopt-a-Senior Program

Posted 4/2/2020 3:06:00 PM

Brittany McDermott
Community Recreation Manager
City of Palm Coast

Palm Coast - It is times like these that it is imperative the community comes together in support. Palm Coast Parks & Recreation is doing just that with its Adopt-a-Senior program. Staff are making wellness calls to seniors with the goal of making sure they are both physically and mentally well.

 "Recognizing that the recreation activities we provide are some of the only social interaction our senior community gets, we felt it was important to reach out and make sure they were faring well through this time," said Palm Coast Parks & Recreation Director Lauren Johnston. "It is equally beneficial to us as we miss the face-to-face interactions we typically would be having."

The Adopt-a-Senior program is in the beginning stages, so for now calls are being made to those who have registered with Parks & Rec for senior activities. Staff are checking to see how they are doing with the COVID-19 social distancing recommendations and Mayor Holland's "Stay Home, Stay Safe" order.

"Our calls are being received with genuine appreciation; our residents are pleasantly surprised by our kind gesture and the efforts the City of Palm Coast has made to keep a steady flow of communication," said Palm Coast Parks & Recreation Facility & Guest Attendant Vanessa Pearson.

"A few seemed just really happy having someone to talk to," said Palm Coast Parks & Recreation Facility & Guest Attendant Jason Zachok. "Of course a few toilet paper related statements came up, but those were meant as humorous."

The seniors that staff have connected with so far are maintaining a positive disposition. They miss the parks, trails, and recreation activities but are respecting social distancing recommendations and will be happy when this is all over.

"In an unprecedented crisis like this, we want every person in our community to know they are not alone," said Mayor Milissa Holland. "I encourage our wonderful senior community and all members of our community missing our parks, trails and other amenities to please take part in the incredible virtual recreation programs that our Parks & Recreation team has built on Palm Coast Connect."

It is important to stay connected as a community even if it can only be done over the phone or in some other virtual manner at this time. Palm Coast Parks & Recreation staff will continue to make as many calls as they can to senior activity participants and provide every opportunity possible to stay engaged through this challenging time.

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