Clearfield, PA – The Clearfield County Area Agency on Aging, Inc. announces that its Elder Cottage Housing Option (ECHO) recently received a 2020 Aging Innovations Award from the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a), the highest honor presented by n4a to member agencies.
The awards program is supported by Centene.
The Elder Cottage Housing Opportunity which enables older adults to live independently and have a higher quality of life, was among the top 17 of 44 local aging programs to receive honors during the n4a Virtual Conference & Tradeshow, September 22.
The 2020 n4a Aging Innovations and Achievement Awards recognizes n4a’s Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) and Title VI Native American aging programs members that develop and implement cutting-edge approaches to support older adults, people with disabilities and their family caregivers. Among the selection criteria was the ease with which other agencies could replicate the program in their communities.
“n4a is thrilled to present the Aging Innovations and Achievement Awards to a diverse and remarkable group of Area Agencies on Aging. We salute all those who have enhanced the prestige of this awards program by sharing their innovative initiatives with their peers in the Aging Network,” said Sandy Markwood, Chief Executive Officer of n4a. “Meeting the needs of older adults, people with disabilities and their caregivers has been at the heart of what the nation’s network of AAAs and Title VI Native American aging programs have done for nearly 50 years—and is more critical now, in light of the impact COVID-19 is having on the communities these agencies serve.
These vital programs focus on social engagement, caregiving or healthy aging, and we commend them all. We know our members will continue creating great programs like the ones highlighted in this year’s 2020 Aging Innovations and Achievement Awards, as the aging of the population demands our best and most innovative solutions,” Markwood said.
The Elder Cottage Housing Opportunity not only enables older adults to live independently and have a better quality of life, it provides for close proximity to family members and a more affordable cost of living. The 600-square-foot accessible units can be placed on the property of a family member and include a large bedroom, a living/dining area and a wheelchair-accessible bathroom and kitchen. Elder cottages allow privacy for older adults and provide a safe housing option.
Kathleen Gillespie, CEO of the Clearfield County AAA, was the visionary behind this project. “An ECHO cottage can keep individuals close to their families, enabling adult children and relatives the convenience of overseeing care, and maintaining family relationships. Grandchildren will be blessed with the opportunity to learn from the wisdom our elders hold and the joy that these relationships bring”, Ms. Gillespie said.
The 2020 n4a Aging Innovations Awards honored traditional and new strategies in a range of categories including Advocacy, Agency Operations, Caregiving, Health-LTSS Integration, Healthy Aging, Housing, Intergenerational Programs, Nutrition and Social Engagement.
All winners are showcased in the n4a 2020 AIA awards book.
The Clearfield County Area Agency on Aging are changing aging –providing options and more opportunity to age well in Clearfield County. If anyone would like more information about ECHO Cottages, contact the CCAAA at (814)765-2696 or visit the Agency online at www.ccaaa.net.
The National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) represents the 622 Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) across the country and is a champion in our nation’s capital for the more than 250 Title VI Native American aging programs. n4a’s primary mission is to build the capacity of our members so they can help older adults and people with disabilities live with dignity and choices in their homes and communities.