Programming for JABA’s Scottsville Community Senior Center has moved to the Yancey School Community Center.
Due to space issues at the former location at 250 Page St., the Jefferson Area Board for Aging decided to stop using that facility and move to the Esmont center.
Marta Keane, CEO of JABA, said the change allows any seniors around Esmont and Scottsville to go to the program three days a week in the same location.
“We have a newer space that actually allows for a lot more activity because we have a separate room for doing our activities, we have a separate room for the nurse to meet with people individually, so it’s just a much better setup,” she said.
During Monday night’s Scottsville Town Council meeting, a community member expressed concerns about the change.
“The people down at the apartment building, that’s their only outlet to get out of their apartment building and to be with other seniors,” said Charlotte Joyner. “I’m asking the Town Council to see what they can do to help us find a sponsor or sponsor us so we can stay within the town of Scottsville.”
Scottsville Mayor Ron Smith said he would make some phone calls and report back to the council.
“I’ll be happy to start tomorrow trying to figure out what’s going on, because this is the first I’ve heard of that,” he said.
More than a year ago, JABA created a southern Albemarle activity calendar, with programming for seniors at Yancey on Tuesdays and Thursdays and in Scottsville on Wednesdays.
“Before COVID, we had several Scottsville members who had been participating actively at Yancey because they liked the opportunity to go more days, meet new people and interact in some of the activities that were being offered on Tuesday and Thursday,” Keane said.
Keane said transit agency Jaunt has been able and willing to provide residents from Scottsville Apartments and others in the town rides up to Yancey, and some members drive themselves.
During the pandemic, JABA temporarily suspended operations at its community senior centers, sent activity packets to members and did remote games, such as conference call bingo.
In Esmont, JABA held a vehicle parade and drove by members’ houses, occasionally stopping to drop off supplies and gifts. In Scottsville, JABA gave out ice cream.
Keane said this is the first week since the pandemic hit that members can go to Yancey, but they still have some members across all of the senior centers who want to stay at home but stay connected.
“We’ve now created a permanent program called At Home with JABA, so that our members that choose not to go back, our recipients of our home-delivered meals that never belonged to the center or just anyone new who isn’t a big joiner can participate in our monthly calendar of a lot of different [conference call or virtual] events,” she said.
JABA is hosting a spring drive-thru celebration for Older Americans Month from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the organization’s main office at 674 Hillsdale Drive in Charlottesville. The event will include distribution of information from JABA and its partners.