President’s Message … Margaret Schieck

Here we are in March and it is another busy month!  Happy St. Patrick’s Day to all, as well as Happy First Day of Spring, Happy Passover, and Happy Easter (in early April)!  It is also Women’s History month. (For a virtual Women’s History exhibit, go to:  losaltoshistory.org/rise-up.)

Wow! There are a lot of items to cover this month.

Don’t forget to set your clocks ahead 1 hour for Daylight Savings Time on March 14th.  Don’t forget to read Angie’s article on “Have a Heart for Sacred Heart” food drive contributions in this newsletter. 

Also, the 11th Annual Benefit Concert “For Love” supporting Next Door Solutions to Domestic Violence will take place virtually this year on March 20th at 7:30 p.m.  The concert is free this year, but donations are strongly encouraged.  For access to the concert, please send an e-mail request to:  2021forlove@gmail.com.  As many of you know, several of our AARP members sing with the Orchard City Community Chorus, which is one of the 10 choruses contributing voices to this virtual event.

I would also like to encourage our members to remember Mama Mia’s restaurant when they are thinking of ordering meals.  We may or may not be able to have our annual luncheon this year, but Frank has been very supportive of our group in keeping costs reasonable for us at the luncheon.  He could use our support now.  In addition, remember Sorelle’s as well.  They have accommodated after-meeting lunches and our need for separate checks.

I hope everyone has a Happy Spring and I’m looking forward to seeing you all on-line on March 16th and, hopefully, in person soon.

President’s Message … Margaret Schieck

Here we are in the dreary month of February, but at least we have Valentine’s Day and Presidents’ Day to look forward to.

The Campbell Area AARP Chapter 5151 members should be very proud.  Together we managed to accrue 3,091.75 volunteer hours of service in 2020.  That is 187 hours more than we accumulated in 2019.  Considering the fact that many of our activities had to be conducted virtually, that is outstanding.  Many thanks to Leona Fails for doing the massive job of adding all those hours up.  In February, the National AARP will be accepting nominations for the National Community Service Award.  We should try to have a nominee.

As I mentioned at the January meeting, a student at Harker Academy, Arthur Kajiyama, has set up a group of students to make phone calls to seniors who would like to be contacted once a week by telephone.  If you are interested in receiving a phone call from a teenager, please send an e-mail (preferably) to Joy Walsh at joywalsh1@comcast.net or at her phone number(s) listed on Page 3.  There are two adult mentors for the group.

Hopefully, we will be able to meet in person after March.

President’s Message…Ken Schieck

This will be my last letter as your chapter president.  It has been an interesting and challenging four years.  Even before the pandemic broke, the board and I had to deal with losing our vice-president and taking care of matters related to the Treasury.  Fortunately, we took care of both issues.

I would like to express my deep gratitude for many of the board and committee chairs who, like myself, stayed on beyond the normal two-year period. Hopefully, there will be more new members willing to take their places when the time comes.

Two lessons I learned this year:  (1) be conversant with the latest technology and  (2) understand the importance of personal bonding.  Many of us had to learn to use Zoom as a platform to conduct and attend board and general meetings; this type of technology will continue to be part of our communication program for the indefinite future.  Our organization is held together, in large part, through the publication of the monthly Dispatch and the telephone committee’s calls to members each week.

I have found through conversations with other chapter leaders that it is not common for AARP chapters to issue a monthly multi-page newsletter.  So special thanks to Harry Kiesler and Jeanne Ulrich for keeping the Dispatch going and to Thelma Bridges for organizing the weekly calls to members. These calls have been gratefully received.

I would also extend thanks to our vice-president, Paul Levine, for providing monthly speakers during these challenging times.

Thank you for your support and encouragement during the last four years. Please continue to provide it for Margaret.    

Happy Holidays!

President … Ken Schieck

National AARP continues to share current Covid-19 information every Thursday at 10:00 AM PDT; phone # is 855-274-9507.

Many thanks again to Thelma Bridges and her telephone committee; they are continuing to contact all our members every week, checking to see if they are safe and have all the items they need.  A device as simple as a telephone can assist us in keeping our AARP bonds with each other.  It goes without saying that members who have email and phones should also keep up any contacts they have with other members.

I coordinated my first general meeting on Zoom Tuesday, August 18; thanks to those of you who attended and saw a great presentation on museum operations during the COVID pandemic.  Our next general meeting is Tuesday, September 15, but will be earlier at 9 AM; see the “September Meeting” Note for more details.

Thanks to Nancy Tepperman, who served as our Treasurer for the last four or five months.  Sharon Levine has offered to accept the Treasurer position and the Assistant Treasurer position will be filled by Leona Fails.

REMINDER:  As of the beginning of July, National AARP has cancelled all in-person AARP events until the end of the year, including in-person general meetings. We will continue to hold our meetings using Zoom or other technologies until further notice.

Please read this issue of the Dispatch carefully, as there is a lot of information about current happenings in the Campbell area.  Please check our chapter website at campbellaarp.org for information on positions with the Red Cross.  Thanks to Lynda Martinez, Shelly Schwartz, Marilyn Clough and Veronika Phillips for Glad Tidings and Jokes in the previous Dispatch.

President … Ken Schieck

National AARP continues to share current Covid-19 information every Thursday at 10:00 a.m. PDT; phone # is 855-274-9507.

Again, many thanks to Thelma Bridges and her telephone committee, who have contacted all our members every week checking to see if they are safe and have all the items they need.  A device as simple as a telephone can assist us in keeping our AARP bonds with each other.  It goes without saying that members who have email and phones should also keep up any contacts they have with other members.

Thanks to Paul and Sharon Levine, who hosted another Zoom general meeting on Tuesday, July 21; there were 30 attendees, including officers.  Please consider joining the next general meeting on Tuesday, August 18.  And remind fellow members to attend as well!  Just as we allow guests to attend three meetings without cost, we can allow guests to attend three of our Zoom meetings.

REMINDER:  As of the beginning of July, National AARP has cancelled all in-person AARP general meetings.  We will continue to hold our meetings using Zoom or other technologies until further notice.

National AARP wants to hear from you about what policies you think AARP should pursue to improve the lives of people as they age.  Send your ideas to policy@aarp.org.

Please check our chapter’s campbellaarp.org website for information on positions with the Red Cross.

Thanks to Lynda Martinez, Sheila Bailey, Shelly Schwartz, Marilyn Clough, and Angie Jaggars for last month’s Glad Tidings and Jokes!

President … Ken Schieck

National AARP is sharing current Covid-19 information every Thursday at 10:00 a.m. PDT; phone # is 855-274-9507.

Many thanks again to Thelma Bridges and her telephone committee; they have contacted all our members every week checking to see if they are safe and have all the items they need.  A device as simple as a telephone can assist us in keeping our AARP bonds with each other.

Thanks to Paul and Sharon Levine, who hosted our first Zoom general meeting on Tuesday, June 16; there were about 25 attendees, including officers. Please consider joining the next general meeting on Tuesday, July 21.

As of the beginning of July, National AARP has cancelled all in-person AARP events until the end of the year, including in-person general meetings.

We will continue to hold our meetings using Zoom or other technologies until further notice.

In these uncertain times, it is good to have ‘Glad Tidings’ brought up on a monthly basis in the Dispatch; thanks to Maribel Santos and Lynda Martinez who provided reflections last month.

President … Ken Schieck

National AARP is sharing current COVID-19 information every Thursday at 10:00 a.m. PDT.  The (corrected) phone # is 855-274-9507.

Please remember and pray for the families of Marlene Hruby and Libby Harbour (see tributes by Marilyn Clough on page 2).  Marlene was my mentor for two years, and I will never forget her assistance.  She was a huge participant in our chapter for the last ten to fifteen years.

Many thanks again to Thelma Bridges and her telephone committee; they have contacted all our members every week checking to see if they are safe and have all the items they need.

Paul and Sharon Levine will host a general Zoom meeting on Tuesday, June 16. (See posting).  We must use 21st century technology to keep our bonds strong. The Campbell Community Center will not open for meetings like ours until at least August; I will keep you posted about any changes.

It’s mosquito season, so be sure to have all your screens in place, and empty any standing water.

Some updated information from AARP member Liz Gibbons:

-Capacity for expanded testing is ramping up.  Congregate settings, such as nursing homes, will also see increased testing;

-About 1,000 to 1,200 tests are being conducted daily in Santa Clara County; ideal is 4,000/day.  For more information, check sccgov.org/cv19testing;

-Testing and contact tracing are two of our five key indicators that are needed to be ready for the next phase of our COVID-19 response;

-County Office of Labor Standards Enforcement (OLSE) and County COVID-19 Assistance Navigation (CAN) have teamed up to create resource lines for workers who are financially impacted by COVID-19.  OLSE hotline is 1-866-870-7725; CAN hotline is 1-408-809-2124.

For more timely information on County Shelter-In-Place orders, go to  https://www.sccgov.org/sites/covid19/Pages/public-health-orders.aspx

President … Ken Schieck

National AARP is sharing current COVID-19 information every Thursday at 10:00 a.m. PDT.  The phone # is 855-274-9507.

Our membership has voted NOT to have a general meeting on May 19.

Many thanks to Thelma Bridges and her telephone committee who were able to contact 88 of our members; 52 voted not to have a meeting either through teleconference or Zoom. If the shelter in place order still forbids meetings of 50 or more in June, we will have to consider one of these 21st century means of communications to keep bonding with our members, a bond which has given our chapter the vibe and warmth that it has!

If you have not received a weekly copy of the California Connections Weekly Brief, or the Covid-19 information card, please let me know, and I will make sure you get it.

A reminder: Santa Clara County has kept Shelter in Place for another month, presumably ending on May 31; counties (and the state) make decisions like this based on the following criteria:

• The ability to monitor and protect our communities through testing, contact tracing, isolating, and supporting those who are positive or exposed.

• The ability to prevent infection in people who are at risk for more severe COVID-19.

• The ability of the hospital and health systems to handle surges.

• The ability to develop therapeutics to meet the demand.

• The ability for businesses, schools, and childcare facilities to support physical distancing, and

• The ability to determine when to reinstitute measures, such as the stay-at-home orders, if necessary.

A big thanks to our member, Liz Gibbons, for providing this information.

President … Ken Schieck

National AARP is sharing current COVID-19 information every Thursday at 10:00 a.m. PDT.  The phone # is 885-274-9507.

These past few weeks have been a difficult time for all of us. As various government and other agencies have given us timely information and suggestions as to how to handle the Coronavirus, we still need to know how to live in this ‘new normal’ time.

Many of you want to know how and if the events and meetings in which our chapter is normally involved will continue; all I can say right now is that we are basically in uncharted waters. The Board and I want to continue as many activities as possible, while planning them under these new circumstances.

I know that it is important for seniors not to feel undue isolation in this moment.  Loneliness is a human issue, especially for those of us over 55.  National AARP reckons that 20% of older Americans are at risk for social isolation, and even more if they are struggling financially. Therefore, I am asking Thelma Bridges, our phone committee chair, to make sure that members of her committee contact all members on a weekly basis to make sure you all have food, medicines, etc. that you need.  None of our members should feel unsure about having food and over-the-counter medications; surely, some of us can help the others who need assistance.

As new information comes in, I will continue to post it on our website and/or in the Dispatch. If you want to share information or, especially, to help a fellow member with shopping or other issues, please contact me or one of the Board members if you need contact information.

For some specific information about caregiving, a public service of the U.S. Administration on Aging, Eldercare Locator, connects people to services for older adults and their families. They can be reached at https://eldercare.acl.gov/Public/Index.aspx or at 1-800-677-1116.

I participated in the national AARP conference call on March 26; the moderator gave us the following websites for monitoring the virus:

aarp.org/coronavirus; AARP’s updates

cdc.gov/coronavirus; the Center for Disease Control

To all members of Campbell AARP Chapter 5151 – Ken Schieck, President

These past few weeks have been a difficult time for all of us.  As various government and other agencies have given us timely information and suggestions as to how to handle the Coronavirus, we still need to know how to live in this ‘new normal’ time.

I participated in the national AARP conference call on March 26; the moderator gave us the following websites:

aarp.org/coronavirus

cdc.gov/coronavirus

The second one is the Center for Disease Control; both of these have current info about the virus and issues surrounding it.

Many of you want to know how, and if, the events and meetings in which our chapter is normally involved will continue; all I can say right now is that we are basically in uncharted waters.  The Board and I want to continue as many activities as possible, while planning them under these new circumstances.

I know that it is important for seniors not to feel undue isolation in this moment; loneliness is a human issue, especially for those of us over 55.  National AARP reckons that 20% of older Americans are at risk for social isolation and even more if they are struggling financially.  Therefore, I am asking Thelma Bridges, our phone committee chair, to make sure that members of her committee contact all members on a weekly basis to make sure you all have food, medicines, etc. that you need.  None of our members should feel unsure about having food and over-the-counter medications; surely, some of us can help the others who need assistance. As new information comes in, I will continue to post it on our website and/or in the Dispatch. If you want to share information or, especially, to help a fellow member with shopping or other issues, please contact me or one of the Board members if you need contact information.

Here are two links with more specific information about caregiving:

acl.gov

eldercare.acl.gov