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Spotlight on Innovations and Achievements: Aging Resources of Central Iowa Offers Support to At-Risk Older Adults

Learn how this AAA addressed concerns of suspected elder abuse or mistreatment in its community through the use of client-driven services such as family mediations, filing no-contact orders and advocating for clients, which often reduce or eliminate the need for additional legal action.

We're proud to highlight the award-winning work of the 2019 winners of n4a's Aging Innovations and Achievement Awards in this weekly spotlight feature. This week, we are focusing on Aging Resources of Central Iowa's Elder Abuse Prevention and Awareness Program. The agency was a 2019 Aging Achievement Award winner in the Elder Abuse Prevention category.
 
Aging Resources of Central Iowa has developed a program to address and prevent elder abuse and mistreatment by identifying older adults who may be at risk and providing them with support and education through the Elder Abuse Prevention and Awareness Program.
 
To help older Iowans who are at risk of, or who are experiencing elder abuse, neglect or financial exploitation, the Elder Abuse Prevention and Awareness Program assists participants with client-driven services such as family mediations, filing no-contact orders and advocating for older adults to reduce or prevent elder abuse from occurring. Program staff address the concerns of participants and provide them with options they can use to remedy potential elder abuse. The services provided by the program often reduced or eliminated the need for additional legal action.
 
The program has provided local communities and service providers with an invaluable resource. Creating and raising awareness of this intervention has allowed other community programs and service providers to learn more and even become partner ins decreasing the rising epidemic of elder abuse. Many older adults who have participated in the program state that they feel empowered by the choices they made and have gained control of their life again.
 
Community partners within law enforcement, veteran affairs, fire departments and the Department of Human Services have shared that, “It is a relief and comfort to be able to confidently refer an older adult to this program. We know that they will go the extra mile to give older adults the information and education they need and connect them to the right service to address their concerns.”
 
Other AAAs can replicate this program by networking and partnering with local emergency response agencies and their local Department of Human Services, which often receive multiple calls from or about vulnerable adults.
 
To learn more about the Aging Resources of Central Iowa's Elder Abuse Prevention and Awareness Program, contact Crystal Doig, Elder Rights Specialist, Crystal.Doig@agingresources.com.
 
For more information about the 2019 winners, read our press release and check out our book of winners to learn how your agency can implement this or similar programs in your community! You can also listen to our four-part webinar series, n4a Lunchtime Innovations, to hear your peers' secrets to success for these award-winning programs.

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