Keeping the elderly safe in the summer heat

By Lauren Payne - bio | email feedback

Jonesboro, AR (KAIT)   - The intense heat can be a lot for anybody to handle, but those very young and the elderly are especially vulnerable to the dangers that go along with it.

"We're really thinking that people are going to be on fixed incomes, really low budgets, and they're going to need our help," said Christy Appleton.

Christy Appleton is the Director of Aging Services at Crowley's Ridge Development Council.  She says they are ready to help.  She says, often times, on a fixed income the elderly have to make choices.

"We can do food.   We can get our medicines.   Many times they will turn off that air conditioners, turn off their stoves, they won't cook," said Appleton.

Appleton says it doesn't have to be that way thanks to a utility assistance program beginning in a just a few weeks.

"If they will reach out for their resources, and come to CRDC, then we can give them the opportunity to get money for their utilities," said Appleton.

Appleton says there are also senior life centers across the 8 county area they serve.  The elderly can get transportation to and from the centers and even be served a healthy meal.  For the homebound, there are options too.

"We deliver homebound meals and one of the services is that we knock on the door and we have to see the person because we want to see if they're ok or not," said Appleton.

Appleton says family, friends and neighbors can help as well by checking on their elderly friends daily. To those who do need help, Appleton encourages them to just ask.

Officials at the East Arkansas Area Agency on Aging say they will also be giving out fans and even air conditioners this summer.

To reach CRDC call, 870-932-0836.

To reach East Arkansas Area Agency on Aging, call 972-5980 or 1-800-467-3278.

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