How to Find and Hire a Good Handyman or Contractor

 

What's the best way to find a good handyman or tradesman to do some work around the house? I've have had some bad luck lately with unprofessional workers who do shoddy work and charge too much.
Hiring a good home repair handyman can be a bit difficult. How do you find someone who will return your calls, show up on time, do the job right and finish it, all at a fair price? Here are some tips that can help.

Who to Call

While it may seem obvious, whom you call for help will depend on what you need done. If, for example, you have a small home repair or improvement project that doesn't require a lot of technical expertise, a handyman may be all you need. But if you have a job that involves electricity, plumbing, or heating or cooling systems, you're better off going with a licensed tradesman. Bigger jobs like home renovations or remodeling may require a general contractor.
Whatever type of work you need, the best way to find the right person is through referrals from people you trust. If your friends or family don't have any recommendations, turn to professionals in the field like local hardware or home improvement stores, or even real estate agents.
The Internet can also help. Websites like HomeAdvisor.com can put you in touch with prescreened, customer-rated service professionals in your area for free. You can also try AngiesList.com, a membership service that will connect you with contractors and service companies with various types of expertise for free. They provide ratings and reviews of local professionals who've done work for other members in your area, plus details about the type of work they've done, prices, professionalism and timeliness. They also offer an upgraded silver or gold membership for $25 or $100 per year, which offers discounts, a magazine, complaint resolutions and more.
Another option for finding handyman services is through a local or national service company like MrHandyman.com, HouseDoctors.com or HandymanConnection.com. You'll probably pay more going through a company than you would with an independent handyman, but service companies typically promise professional workers who are screened, licensed, bonded and insured.
To find local handyman services in your community, check your yellow pages or go to any Internet search engine and type in "handyman" plus your city and state.

Things to Know

Once you've located a few candidates, your next step is to get written estimates that list the materials, costs and details of the project. It's a good idea to get at least three estimates from different sources to be sure you're getting a fair deal.
Before hiring someone, check out his or her work history with your state consumer protection agency (go to usa.gov/state-consumer for a list) and the Better Business Bureau (bbb.org/council). You can also search the Web using the company or individual's name and such words as "reviews" and "complaints."
You also need to find out if your candidates have an approved contractor or tradesman license. Using an unlicensed worker in a state that requires a license is dangerous - you'll have little legal recourse if the job goes bad. To see which states license contractors, visit contractors-license.org. Contractorcheck.com is another good resource for researching local contractors.
Also, ask to see their proof of insurance, which covers any damages they may cause while working on your home, and ask for several references from past jobs and check them.
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.
Published October 28, 2016

Forgetfulness: What's Normal, What's Not?

Forgetfulness: What's Normal, What's Not?

At age 76, my husband has become forgetful lately and is worried he may have Alzheimer's. What resources can you recommend to help us get a grip on this?
Many seniors worry about memory lapses as they get older fearing it may be the first signs of Alzheimer's disease or some other type of dementia. To get some insight on the seriousness of your husband's problem, here are some resources you can turn to for help.

Warning Signs

As we grow older, some memory difficulties - such as forgetting names or misplacing items from time to time - are associated with normal aging. But the symptoms of dementia are much more than simple memory lapses.
While symptoms can vary greatly, people with dementia may have problems with short-term memory, keeping track of a purse or wallet, paying bills, planning and preparing meals, remembering appointments or traveling out of the neighborhood.
To help you and your husband recognize the difference between typical age-related memory loss and a more serious problem, the Alzheimer's Association provides a list of 10 warning signs that you can assess at 10signs.org.
They also provide information including the signs and symptoms on the other conditions that can cause dementia like vascular dementia, Lewy body dementia, frontotemporal dementia, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, chronic traumatic encephalopathy and others - see ALZ.org/dementia.

Memory Screening

Another good place to help you get a handle on your husband's memory problems is through the National Memory Screening Program, which offers free memory screenings throughout National Memory Screening Month in November.
Sponsored by the Alzheimer's Foundation of America, this free service provides a confidential, face-to-face memory screening that takes about 10 minutes to complete and consists of questions and/or tasks to evaluate his memory status.
Screenings are given by doctors, nurse practitioners, psychologists, social workers or other healthcare professionals in thousands of sites across the country. It's also important to know that this screening is not a diagnosis. Instead, its goal is to detect problems and refer individuals with these problems for further evaluation.
To find a screening site in your area visit NationalMemoryScreening.org or call 866-232-8484. It's best to check for a screening location at the end of October, because new sites are constantly being added.

See a Doctor

If you can't find a screening site in your area, make an appointment with his primary care doctor to get a cognitive checkup. This is covered 100% by Medicare as part of their annual wellness visit. If his doctor suspects any problems, he may give him the Memory Impairment Screen, the General Practitioner Assessment of Cognition, or the Mini Cog. Each test can be given in less than five minutes.
Depending on his score, his doctor may order follow-up tests or simply keep it on file so he can see if there are any changes down the road. Or, he may then refer him to a geriatrician or neurologist who specializes in diagnosing and treating memory loss or Alzheimer's disease.
Keep in mind that even if your husband is experiencing some memory problems, it doesn't necessarily mean he has dementia. Many memory problems are brought on by other factors like stress, depression, thyroid disease, side effects of medications, sleep disorders, vitamin deficiencies and other medical conditions. And by treating these conditions he can reduce or eliminate the problem.
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.
Published October 21, 2016
 
 
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Foundation Announces Mahuron Education Fund Grant Recipients

The Mahuron Education Fund was established at the Washington County Community Foundation to encourage educators and staff to teach in innovative ways. This year, the fund has awarded several teachers in the county school corporations over $5100.00. 

Rebecca Jones’ 3rd grade class at East Washington Elementary School will be creating a Makerspace by learning and using creation and innovation as a theme, shifting the learning to the student center.

Students in Anna Marie Endris’ 6th grade East Washington Elementary School class will be using robotics to support good pedagogy and providing hands-on learning that puts the focus on problem-based learning, collaboration and cooperation, and the application of knowledge, skills and concepts.

Carla Coachran’s 6th grade class at East Washington Elementary School will also utilize robots in science by learning to code.  The objective of the project is to have students create projects and solve problems that exist in the real world.

Students in Stephanie Bower’s Bradie Shrum Elementary School Kindergarten classroom will Paint to Play. Bower plans on painting games and activity courses on the kindergarten playground for children to develop skills such as balance and coordination.  Playground markings may include letter, number, and shape designs, maze, hopscotch, Four Square, and balance lines.

Students in Lisa Thomas’ East Washington Elementary School Kindergarten room will be exploring visual spatial skills to designing structures using TEGU magnetic blocks.

Focus will be the key in Lorie Campbell’s 3rd grade Bradie Shrum Elementary classroom when her new standing desk arrives.  The desk provides a way for students to stand while completing work so they may stay focused on the task while learning.

Jenisa Collier’s Bradie Shrum Elementary School Kindergarten class will be enjoying new workspaces to work during the day. The new workspaces will keep students focused and on-task.

Students in Leah Stewart’s 4th grade classroom will be reading a new book this year, the BFG by Roald Dahl.  Stewart will be receiving a classroom set of the book and students will take part in discussion about friendship and kindness.

Greg McCurdy’s Salem High School Biology classes will get an up close and personal look at bacteria growth and other organisms with new teaching tools. The first is a device that clips to a student’s cell phone, turning the phone into inexpensive, portable microscopes.  Another new tool is a time lapse camera that will be programmed to record the growth of bacteria in petri dishes and culture tubes.

All students and staff at West Washington School Corporation can be involved in producing quality YouTube videos for instruction and tutorials as well as building and participating in breakout games within the classroom due to a grant issued to Kelly Williams, Technology Coordinator for the school system.

Erin Moore’s Bradie Shrum Elementary School 2nd grade class will be exploring the world through STEM by utilizing STEM challenge kits, focusing on analyzing real-life scenarios to plan, design, and create models.  The students will test and improve their designs using problem solving brought about by real life disasters.

Students in PE at East Washington Elementary School will begin to learn the sport of tennis. The grant, awarded to Leah Starrett, will be used to purchase smaller rackets, small nets, and tennis balls specifically made to bounce slower for younger children.

Jennifer Olesh’s students at Eastern High School will be using experimental design to determine maximum electricity from wind turbines, allowing students to see how wind generates energy and experiment with different types and sizes of blades for turbines, which will lead to deeper discussion about the pros and cons of wind/alternate forms of energy.

Marcia Smith’s 3rd grade classroom at East Washington Elementary School will be learning about Indiana animals by incorporating reading, writing, and science about a specific animal in Indiana.  Students will examine animal classifications, adaptations, habitat, and animal characteristic and write an organized report and create animal habitats out of LEGOs.

Third grade students at Bradie Shrum Elementary School will also be exploring the world of STEM due to a collaborative grant awarded to Crystal Mikels and Emily Johnson. Mikels and Johnson plan to start an afterschool STEM Club to develop student problem solving skills in the fields of computer coding, robotics, and other STEM related topics.

Angela Snelling’s 2nd grade Bradie Shrum Elementary classroom will be getting their wiggles out with a grant for Isokinetic Balance Cushions.  The cushions are designed to better help students focus and learn throughout the day.

Donors Help Washington County Community Foundation Award Over $28K in Grants

The Humane Society of Washington County will be acquiring a new van thanks to a $2500 grant from the PNC Touch Tomorrow Fund and Salem ACE Hardware Touch Tomorrow Fund. The Humane Society is partnering with surrounding counties to purchase the van that will be used to transport pets that have not been adopted or whose owners have not claimed them from the City of Salem animal shelter to more highly populated areas.

The LJ Fultz/Russell Trueblood Touch Tomorrow Fund and David Beck Touch Tomorrow have issued a$5000 grant for Afterschool Tutoring to CAST (Creating Avenues for Student Transformation). CAST provides free after school opportunities that help to bridge the gap between school hours and home hours in new and engaging ways for Salem Middle School students.  The program offers personalized tutoring, homework help, healthy snacks, recreation, and character education.

Washington County Special Olympics will be using new technology due to a $1000 grant from the Bob and Carol Strange Touch Tomorrow Fund and the First Harrison Bank Touch Tomorrow Fund. The grant will be used for an IPad Pro and IPad Pro pencil to record data for the organization and assist in keeping paperwork more organized.

The Glenn Armstrong Touch Tomorrow Fund and the John M. Colglazier Touch Tomorrow Fund have awarded a $2500 grant to Junior Achievement. Grant funds will be used for educational financial literacy programs in all three county school systems. 

The Bob and Clarice Morris Touch Tomorrow Fund is helping the Washington County Senior Citizen Housing Board upgrade the roofs at Meadow Dell apartments. The $10000 grant from the fund will be used for roof replacement of at least six apartment buildings with Energy Star rated shingles.

United Way 2-1-1 will once again serve Washington County thanks to a $1203.76 grant from the Salem Mortgage Touch Tomorrow Fund and James and Diana Apple Touch Tomorrow Fund. United Way 2-1-1 is a referral service connecting people in need to community resources.

The Bob and Clarice Morris Touch Tomorrow Fund along with the Ron and Deb Mays Touch Tomorrow Fund and the Jeff and Karen Morgan Touch Tomorrow Fund have awarded a $6000 grant to Dare to Care Food Bank for the Backpack Buddy program. The program ensures children from low-income households receive proper nutrition on weekends.

Flu Vaccines Designed Specifically for Seniors

 

Are there any specific flu shots that are better suited for seniors? I just turned 65 and would like to find out what's recommended and how Medicare covers it.
There are actually two different flu vaccines available this year that are designed specifically for seniors age 65 and older. One option is the Fluzone High-Dose, which has been available since 2010. The other is the new FDA approved FLUAD vaccine (you only need to get one of these).
The Fluzone High-Dose (see Fluzone.com) is a high-potency vaccine that contains four times the amount of antigen as a regular flu shot does, which creates a stronger immune response for better protection. The new FLUAD vaccine (FLUAD.com) contains an added ingredient called adjuvant MF59 that also helps create a stronger immune response.
The extra protection these vaccines provide is particularly helpful to seniors who have weaker immune defenses and have a great risk of developing dangerous flu complications. The CDC estimates that the flu puts more than 200,000 people in the hospital each year and kills an average of 24,000 — 80% to 90% of whom are seniors.
But be aware that both the Fluzone High-Dose and FLUAD are not recommended for seniors who are allergic to chicken eggs or those who have had a severe reaction to a flu vaccine in the past.
You should also know that the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) does not recommend one vaccination over the other; and to date, there have been no studies comparing the two vaccines.
If you decide you don't want to get a senior-specific flu shot, there are other options available to people 65 years and older including the standard (trivalent) flu shot, the quadrivalent flu shot that protects against four different flu viruses and the FluBlok vaccine for those who have egg allergies.
To locate a vaccination site that offers any of these flu shots, visit Vaccines.gov and type in your ZIP code. You'll also be happy to know that as a Medicare beneficiary, Part B will cover 100% of the costs of any flu shot as long as your doctor, health clinic or pharmacy agrees not to charge you more than Medicare pays.

Pneumonia Vaccines

Two other important vaccinations the CDC recommends to seniors, especially this time of year, are the pneumococcal vaccines for pneumonia. Around one million Americans are hospitalized with pneumonia each year and about 50,000 people die from it.
The CDC is now recommending that all seniors, 65 or older, get two vaccinations —Prevnar 13 and Pneumovax 23. Both vaccines, which are administered just once at different times, work in different ways to provide maximum protection.
If you haven't yet received any pneumococcal vaccine you should get the Prevnar 13 first, followed by Pneumovax 23 six to 12 months later. But if you've already been vaccinated with Pneumovax 23, wait at least one year before getting the Prevnar 13.
Medicare Part B covers both shots, if they are taken at least 11 months apart.
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.
Published October 7, 2016

How and When to Apply for Social Security Retirement Benefits

 

What is the easiest way to apply for my Social Security retirement benefits and how far in advance do I need to apply before I start collecting?
The Social Security Administration offers three different ways you can apply for your (or your spouse's) retirement benefits depending on your preference and how much help you need. Here's a rundown of the options, along with information that explains how and when to apply.

How to Apply?

The easiest and most convenient way to apply for your Social Security benefits is to fill out the application yourself online at SocialSecurity.gov. It takes less than 15 minutes to complete the application, as long as you've gathered all of the required information and documentation (more on that at the bottom of the column).
If, however, you'd rather have a Social Security employee assist with the process, you can call 800-772-1213 to apply on the phone or you can visit your local Social Security office. If you apply in person, be sure to call ahead and schedule an appointment to reduce your office wait time.
Whichever method you feel most comfortable using, your application will be reviewed and processed as soon as all necessary documentation and information is received. The Social Security Administration will notify you if it turns out you could qualify for better benefits on your spouse's record or if other family members qualify to receive benefits on your work record.

When to Apply?

While full retirement age is currently 66 (for those born between 1943 and 1954), you can start receiving your Social Security retirement benefits as early as age 62 or as late as age 70. The longer you wait, the larger your monthly check. See ssa.gov/retire/estimator.html to estimate your benefits.
The Social Security Administration recommends that you apply for retirement benefits three months before you want your payments to start. Therefore, if you want your benefits to begin as soon as you turn 62, then you should apply three months before your 62nd birthday.
It's also worth noting that if you start receiving your Social Security retirement benefits before age 65, you will automatically be enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B and you'll receive your Medicare card approximately three months before your 65th birthday. It will include instructions to return it if you have work coverage that qualifies you for late enrollment.
However, if you decide to delay your retirement benefits, you'll need to sign up for Medicare at age 65, which you can also do at SocialSecurity.gov, over the phone at 800-772-1213 or through your local Social Security office. If you do not sign up, your Medicare coverage may be delayed or cost more in some circumstances.

Needed Information

In order to apply for Social Security benefits, you'll need to be able to document some information about your identity and work history. So, before applying, have the following information handy:
  • Your Social Security number.
  • Your birth certificate (original or certified).
  • Proof of U.S. citizenship (or lawful alien status if you were not born in the United States).
  • A copy of your U.S. military service papers if you served in the military before 1968.
  • A copy of the W-2 forms and/or self-employment tax returns that you filed last year.
  • Your bank information for the bank account where you would like your benefits to be directly deposited (including your account number and the bank routing number).
For a complete checklist of information you'll need to complete your application, see ssa.gov/hlp/isba/10/isba-checklist.pdf.
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.
Published September 30, 2016

Meal Service Delivery Options for People Who Don't Cook

 

What types of healthy meal delivery options can you recommend for individuals who don't cook and don't get out much? Since my mom passed away, my dad's diet is terrible and I worry about his health.
There are various healthy meal service delivery options available to people who don't cook and live at home. The options available will depend on location and budget. Here are several to consider.

Senior Meal Programs

For seniors, a good place to start is to determine if there's a senior home delivery meal program in his area. Meals on Wheels is the largest program that most people are familiar with, but many communities offer senior meal delivery programs sponsored by other organizations that go by different names.
To find services available in your dad's area, visit MealsOnWheelsAmerica.org, which offers a comprehensive directory on their website or call the local area aging agency. Contact the Eldercare Locator at 800-677-1116 to get the number.
Most home delivered meal programs across the U.S. deliver hot meals daily or several times a week, usually around the lunch hour, to seniors over age 60 who have problems preparing meals for themselves, as well as those with disabilities. Weekend meals, usually frozen, may also be available, along with special diets (diabetic, low-sodium, kosher, etc.). Most of these programs typically charge a small fee (usually between $2 and $6) or request a donation, while some may be free to low-income seniors.

Online Meal Delivery

Another option, that's a bit more expensive, is to purchase meals online and have them delivered. There are a number of companies that offer this type of service like Magic Kitchen (magickitchen.com), Home Bistro (homebistro.com), Personal Chef To Go (personalcheftogo.com), Good Measure Meals (goodmeasuremeals.com) and many others.
These companies offer a wide variety of tasty meal choices and will usually post the nutrition information for their meals on their websites. Most companies will also cater to a host of dietary and medical needs, such as low-sodium and low-carb meals, diabetic meals, gluten-free, dairy-free and vegetarian options.
Often the food arrives frozen, but a few companies ship food fresh. Prices generally start at around $10 to $13 per meal. Fortunately, many companies provide discounts or free shipping when you order meals in bulk.

Grocery Stores and Restaurants

Depending on where someone lives, a local grocery store or restaurant may be able to provide home delivered meals. Some grocery stores offer a selection of pre-cooked meals and foods, including roasted chicken, mashed potatoes, fresh soups and salads. Contact local grocery stores to inquire about this option. Or check with some local restaurants to see if they offer home delivery.

Personal Chefs

Another option for individuals with a bigger budget is to hire a personal chef from time to time. A personal chef can provide a comprehensive service that includes help planning meals, grocery shopping and food preparation for several weeks at a time. This will provide meals, which can be frozen and later thawed and eaten as needed. They can also prepare it in their own kitchen and deliver it. Chef's fees range between $200 and $300 plus groceries. To save money, consider sharing meals with another family member, a friend or a neighbor. To find a personal chef in your area, check the listings at the American Personal & Private Chef Association (personalchef.com) or the United States Personal Chef Association (hireachef.com).
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.
Published September 23, 2016
 
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WCCF is Offering Scholarships to Non-Traditional Students

The Washington County Community Foundation is now offering scholarships to non-traditional students through its Education Matters initiative. 

Education Matters is a regional undertaking organized by the community foundations that serve Washington, Scott, Harrison, Clark and Floyd counties to try to increase the number of working adults in our region who started but never completed some form of post-secondary education – education that extends beyond high school.

You might be surprised to learn that in Southeast Indiana, only 25% of our workforce has an associate’s, bachelors or professional degree, compared to 38% nationally. Yet one in four of our community’s adult workers has earned some college credits! That’s over 3,100 people in Washington County!  For whatever reason, they started but never completed their post-secondary education. This represents a tremendous amount of untapped potential in our community.

The community foundations that created Education Matters have elected to concentrate on a small sliver of the overall issue, those one in four of our adult workers who have some post-secondary credits but did not complete their degrees or certifications. This population of people who started but didn’t finish their education is where the Washington County Community Foundation sees opportunity to implement immediate changes that can drive our educational attainment numbers up, ultimately having real impact on our community.

The following criteria have been established for this round of scholarships:

  1. Annual awards will not exceed $3,000 the first twelve months and $5,000 per person in any subsequent twelve month period.

  2. Scholarship applicants must be a minimum of 28 years old as of the date of application.

  3. Only individuals who can demonstrate continuing legal residence in Washington County for at least the past five years are eligible. Documentation such as tax forms, housing receipts, or utility bills will be used to verify residency and/or household income.

  4. Scholarship awards may be used for tuition, course-related fees, or books only. Checks will only be written to an educational institution or certified training provider.

  5. The application deadline is 3:30 on October 21, 2016. No exceptions.

  6. Adult scholarship awards may not be used to pay for college debt.

  7. Subsequent awards will only be considered for students maintaining at least a 2.5 GPA.

Call the Washington County Community Foundation office at 883-7334 or email program.officer@wccf.biz to request an application or for more information.

The mission of the Washington County Community Foundation is to engage people, build resources and strengthen our community.

Health Tips and Advice for Travelers

 

My husband and I are recently retired and would like to do some traveling both in the United States and abroad, but worry about health issues, such as insurance, finding a good hospital if we get sick, etc. What tips can you offer health conscious individuals who want to travel?
A dream vacation can turn into a real nightmare if you get sick or injured while you're away and aren't prepared. Before setting out, here are some simple steps to help ensure a safe and healthy trip.
Talk to your doctor: If you have a medical condition or health concerns, a good first step is to talk with your doctor about what precautions you need to take before traveling. You should also have your doctor's contact information with you when you travel, as well as a list of your medical conditions and the medications you're taking in case you need emergency medical care while you're away.
If you're traveling outside the U.S., you need to find out the health conditions of the country you're visiting and what, if any, vaccinations and/or preventative medications are recommended. See CDC.gov/travel or call 800-232-463 to get this information.
Check your insurance: If you have health insurance or a Medicare Advantage plan through an HMO or PPO that covers in-network doctors only, check your plan to find out what's covered if you need medical care when traveling outside your geographic area.
Beneficiaries that have original Medicare are covered everywhere in the U.S. But if you're traveling abroad, you need to know that original Medicare does not cover medical expenses beyond the border except in rare circumstances, although some Medicare Advantage plans and some Medigap supplemental policies do. Many private health plans don't pay health care costs outside the U.S. either, so be sure to check.
If you need coverage when traveling abroad, get a comprehensive travel medical insurance policy that covers medical care, medical evacuation and trip cancellation coverage. See InsureMyTrip.com and SquareMouth.com to shop and compare policies.
Locate health care: Before your trip, find out what health and urgent care facilities are near the areas you're visiting. Your hotel can help you with this, or see UrgentCareLocations.com or USHospitalFinder.com for U.S. facilities.
If you're traveling abroad, the U.S. consulate or embassy in the countries you're visiting (go to step.state.gov to enroll your trip) is a good place to get a referral. Or join the International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers (IAMAT.org), which provides its members access to a worldwide network of physicians who speak English and have agreed to affordable prearranged fees. Membership is free.
Pack your meds: Make sure you have a sufficient supply of medications to last the entire trip.
If traveling by air, you need to pack your medicine in your carry-on bag, so if your checked luggage gets lost or misdirected you won't be without them. It's best to keep your medications in their original containers to get through airport security without delays. It's also a good idea to bring along a note from your doctor that explains why you take these medications, especially if syringes or other medical supplies are involved.
For airport security requirements visit TSA.gov - click on "Disabilities and Medical Conditions." You can also call TSA Cares at 855-787-2227 prior to traveling with questions about screening policies, procedures and what to expect at the security checkpoint.
Seek mobility aids: If mobility is an issue and you're flying to your destination, call your airline before you leave and ask them to supply you a wheelchair to use while you're in the airport. When booking hotel reservations, ask for an accessible room that accommodates wheelchairs and walkers.
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.

Youth Foundation offers grant cycle

The Washington County Youth Foundation has been steadily working to be ready for the start of this year’s fall grant cycle. They will be conducting a meeting at the Washington County Community Learning Center on October 5, 2016 at 7:00 pm to distribute grant applications. One adult and one youth representative from any organization wishing to apply for a grant should be present at this meeting. The Youth Foundation offers grants for youth directed community service projects. 

Judy Johnson, Executive Director of the Foundation, commented, “The Youth Foundation has been offering a grant cycle since 2002. They have funded many youth-directed community service projects.  It is so exciting to see youth and adults working together for the betterment of Washington County.”

At the October 5th meeting, representatives from the Washington County Youth Foundation will discuss the application process for the grant cycle.  Any organization wishing to apply for a grant should be represented by at least one adult and one youth.  However, this is not a mandatory meeting. 

Applications will be due by October 27, 2016, 3:00pm in the Foundation Office and the grant awards will be announced after November 17th. For more information, you can call the Washington County Community Foundation office at 883-7334.

The mission of the Washington County Community Foundation is to engage people, build resources and strengthen our community.

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