Director
Office on Aging
Christine Wildemuth

Senior Center
540 Ridge Road
Monmouth Junction, NJ 08852
732-329-4000 x7670
or
732-438-0918
(rotary phones)
Transportation
732-329-4000 x7363
Center Hours
Monday to Friday
8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Sundays
1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

 

 

Support Services

From the Desk Of 
Caryl Greenberg, MSW, LSW 
                                                   
 
 
Intergenerational Program Not to be Missed:
Living Legacy’s
Living Legacy’s is a program which the South Brunswick High School students will present at the Senior Center on April 27th at 12:15 pm. The students will be interviewing residents or family members of residents who have impacted this township in some way. The groups of students are a very skilled at interviewing, writing and preforming and we will be in for a treat. Some of you might remember this program in conjunction with Jacque Rubel and the ‘Aging in Place Partnerships’ nonprofit she created. Though ‘AIPP’ is no longer operational, Jacque’s legacy will live on through this program. Jacque believed in partnering with others and creating links that become conduits for resources. She had been very involved in the arts and intergenerational programs and in her memory the High School and Senior Center have committed to this annual program.

 

Vision Support Group
Also worth noting the monthly
‘Vision Support group’ invites all interested individuals to a special meeting with speaker Susan Vanino LSW, from the New Jersey Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired on April 7th at 10:30 am. Susan will discuss ‘Emotional Stages to Vision Loss.’ If you have been diagnosed with an eye disease and glasses or surgery cannot increase your vision you do not want to miss this program. You will walk out feeling hopeful, inspired and a part of a larger group.

 
 
 
 
                                                                Choose Love
     
   Famous poets from Shakespeare to Dickinson to Cummings and Browning have written about love. We love our parents our children our spouses and our friends.  We love our pets, beautiful spring days, chocolate ice cream and joyous gatherings. There are many different type of love in life. Academics have categorized ‘love’ into different types and philosophers have theorized for centuries about love.
     One truth about love that I know is that it makes me feel good to be loved and to love. The power of love is extraordinary! I love being a social worker and working here at the senior center. If I did not ‘love’ my job it would be difficult to be here every day.   Though I don’t know exactly what chemicals occur in the brain when one is in touch with ‘loving’ or being ‘in love’ I’m sure it mimics what anti-depressants do to some degree.
     Why talk about love? Since Valentine’s Day is this month I thought it would be a great topic. And since we feel so good when we experience all types of love why not go after it?
     When I look around the senior center I see lots of love. There have been relationships that have blossomed here enabling people to find love for a second and sometimes a third time! There have been meaningful friendships that have developed and friendships based on mutual interests like billiards, maj jong, puzzles and more. What stands out is the group of several women who now travel together after meeting in my bereavement group. This couldn’t have happened unless one person asked ‘do you want to travel together?
     How you can accomplish more love in your day? Reach out to others. You cannot wait for someone to talk to you. We have to take responsibility for our level of involvement with others. Be approachable. Smile when you see someone and make eye contact with them. Join activities, take a class, stay for lunch and take a chance. If you have other ideas let me know! 

Ted Talks are Here!  Ideas Worth Spreading

TED is a nonpartisan nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks. TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment and Design converged, and today covers almost all topics — from science to business to global issues — I have been watching TED Talks for some time and thought it would be wonderful to watch as a group and discuss topics ranging from personal to global. Please come and spread the word!!

Video and discussion, facilitated by Caryl

    

Caregiving, Maintaining Friendships

And joining a Caregiving Support Group

          Many of you have shared with me your thoughts, concerns, feelings and challenges when it comes to being a caregiver. Though I have not personally experienced caregiving for an older adult I can see while it has many gratifying moments, it is intense, exhausting and all consuming.

          Caregiving is defined as providing unpaid assistance for the physical and emotional needs of another person raging from partial to 24 hour round the clock care.

          Caregivers are ‘on call’ 24/7. If you are out enjoying time with friends or family your mind often defaults to worrying about how your spouse or loved one is doing. Just because someone is in not at home does not entirely change your role as caregiver.

          Another reality of being a caregiver is how difficult it is accepting or making plans with friends. It is tiresome to always say ‘you can’t’ and it’s probable that person doing the asking will eventually stop asking. People will ask ‘how are things going’ and you find yourself responding with the shortened version so you don’t ‘bore them with details’.  You do appreciate their concern but you reflect on if they are just being polite.  It can be very isolating to be a caregiver.

          You have shared that you feel most people don’t know how to relate to you anymore. Is it that they still have reasonable ‘normal’ lives or fear that one day their life might be as intense and all too consuming as mine? Whatever the reason, you have said your social life is going by the waste side.

          We all know how important social relationships are in every stage of life. If you are not a caregiver I bet you know someone who is one. Is there anything you can do to reach out to that person? If you are a caregiver can you figure out a way to give yourself a break?

          One way to manage caregiver stress is to join a support group. ‘You are not alone’ is very encouraging and empowering. Please give me a call if you would like to join a support group which will be newly formed and take place at the senior center: time and dates to be determined.


Attention Veterans and Their Dependents We are very excited to announce that The NJ Department of Military and Veterans Affairs, Veterans Service Officer will be coming to the Senior Center quarterly to assist Veterans. Joe Battito will be available on June 9th from 8:30 am-noon. The Veteran Service Officer will assist veterans and dependents in regard Veteran benefits, claim work and referrals that you may be eligible for. To schedule an appointment please contact Joe at 732.937.6347.

Yiddish Group

The Yiddish language has been the subject of a class at the center for a while. This is a small group and the hope is to gain some additional participants. They concentrate on reading (using transliteration) and converting to English, various stories that are generally short and humorous. A little knowledge of Yiddish is helpful especially if you grew up hearing the language spoken. They meet on Thursdays from 1:15-2:45 pm in the Art Room. Come drop by and schmooze a bisl (chat a little bit) with the other members

 
Join A Group...


What's
 on Your Mind 

"What's On Your Mind" meets on Fridays at 2:15 p.m. to discuss current events and information that interests you. We welcome new members.  You can drop in anytime.  Call Caryl for more information. 


Monthly Bereavement Support Group
Ongoing support group which meets the first Monday of every month at 11:45. Participants offer mutual support to each other as we share our struggles and grief in a safe non-judgmental venue.

The Senior Center also offers a six week Bereavement Support Group when there has been a more recent loss of a significant other. Please call Caryl for more information.

 

Book Club
A weekly group using literature as a conduit for discussion. Participants share thoughts and feelings about what they have read and relate it ‘if applicable’ to their life experience. We meet every Thursday (except the first Thursday of the month) at 10:30 am. Please call Caryl for more information.

 

VISION LOSS SUPPORT GROUP
Meets the first Friday of every month at 10:30 a.m. in the conference room.  This is an opportunity to meet new people, share information and benefit from mutual support. 

Veterans

Veterans age 55 + meet monthly to share stories and strive to re-create the camaraderie that is experienced when sharing a common bond. This group meets monthly on the 2nd Tuesday of each month at 10:45 a.m.

Social Work Services
As more individuals are choosing to ‘age in place’, the senior center offers ‘home visits’ by the Social Worker to the HOMEBOUND elderly. We can provide limited case management services, emotional support and counseling. Many issues include loss, care giving concerns and tensions, coping with health problems, relationship issues, independence, depression, substance abuse, isolation and more.  The Social Worker also sees individuals and couples on site. Please contact Caryl Greenberg for further information. 

Notary   

I am now a NOTARY PUBLIC in the state of NJ. If you need something to be notarized, free of cost, to ensure you are not disappointed please call first to make sure I am in.