Holliston’s Council on Aging Holds Its December Meeting
Council on Aging (CoA) Chair, Bob Malone called the meeting to order at 1:03 and read the remote meeting guidelines for Open Meetings during the pandemic emergency.
The council first approved the Minutes of the October 12th and November 2nd meetings.
Then they moved on to the monthly report from Holliston Senior Center (HSC) Director, Linda Marshall (on the left above). Some highlights follow:
- The Town approved $40,000 at the recent Town Meeting for painting and fire code upgrades
- The first half ($8,325) of the Technology grant awarded to the HSC has been received to purchase tablet computers to help keep seniors connected while socially distancing.
- Over $1,000 in gift cards and financial gifts have been received for the Holiday Giving program – gifts will be wrapped by the Holliston Girl Scouts and delivered to 150 seniors just before Christmas
- Two Holliston Cultural Council grants have been requested for entertainment during two outdoor events in the warmer months of 2021.
- An anonymous donor is sponsoring the cost of 750 meals to be delivered to Seniors (there are meals delivered to approximately 45 Seniors every Monday and Wednesday)
- New / Returning programs in 2021
- “Chat with Staff” – a bi-weekly virtual social hour with staff members and special guests.
- Decreasing Social Isolation Through Technology – using the new tablets to connect to the Center and other Seniors
- Zumba – Lourdes will resume classes via Zoom. Tuesdays at 10:30.
- Valentines’ Day – February 8th – another drive-in event featuring perennial favorite baked stuffed shrimp
- On Wednesday, December 16th the HSC will hold the annual Holiday Dinner as a drive-in event. 200 people have signed up to enjoy the meal, catered by Olivas’ with desserts sponsored by donations from the Holliston Newcomers and Holliston Police Association.
- Director Marshall formally announced her retirement to the Council. After many years devoted to Seniors in Holliston, she plans to end her service on March 31, 2021. She will be involved in screening applicants to fill her role (no one will be able to fill her shoes – or holiday outfits) and there is funding to ensure that she can stay on part-time beyond March to integrate the next Director. Thank you Linda for your caring and devotion to Holliston’s Senior community.
The Council approved several financial requests for aid from the Senior Support Foundation (SSF). One of those requests is for a special program by Henry Quinlan on psychological survival in this pandemic – look for details in the next HSC newsletter.
Chair Malone (below) began his remarks by thanking Linda for her extraordinary service as Director.
The Council then discussed how the search, screening, and selection process would work. Linda will serve as the Chair of the Screening committee – the group that whittles down the applicant pool to a panel of finalists. Town Administrator Ahern, who ultimately makes the hiring decision for this position, will Chair the Selection committee which will decide who the best candidate is. Mr. Ahern will introduce the selected candidate to the Select Board and Town at a regular Board meeting.
The Council typically does not meet in January. The Council approved provisions to call a special meeting if needed to expedite the successful hiring of a new Director in the first quarter of 2021.
The next regular CoA meeting is scheduled for February 10, 2021 at 1:00pm.
The meeting adjourned at 2:22 pm.