SOAR Multi-Year Grant: Aging in Place
The Frederick Funders Data Report of 2021 found that organizations serving the elderly population in Frederick needed more support, resources, and grant funding. This discovery aligned with the Community Needs Assessment which identified that Frederick County has a growing aging population.
One nonprofit organization that works with the aging population in Frederick is SOAR which stands for Serving Older Adults through Resources. This nonprofit was founded by Leslie Schultz who had a career in caring for the elderly prior to her founding SOAR. This experience along with watching her mother age, allowed her to recognize the limited and poor resources for the elderly population.
SOAR’s mission is to keep seniors comfortable and living in their homes. Many seniors are on a fixed income, which often makes it difficult for them to access resources such as transportation, prescription medicine, food, and medical equipment. Seniors may also have mobility limitations that leave them tied to one location, within walking distance of their homes, or dependent on the generosity of others. Finally, nursing homes are expensive and are not a feasible option for everyone.
The goal of this Multi-Year grant is to hire paid staff, expand services, provide case management, collaborate with other organizations, and collect more data. This first goal of hiring paid staff was a significant transition for SOAR as it was an all-volunteer organization, prior to its nomination for this grant. This organization intends to stay true to its roots and will continue to rely heavily on volunteer hours with a desired increase over five years from 1800 to 2600 volunteer hours annually.
SOAR will continue to do its work for a broadening client base from 400 to 600 seniors, addressing the needs of part of the large group of seniors in our community who qualify as ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) based on the United Way ALICE report. The Ausherman Family Foundation Multi-Year Grant of $400,000 to be distributed over fives years will help to ensure that SOAR fulfills its aspirations.
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