2023 Small and Rural Conference
Wednesday, April 26, 2023
9:30am to 3:30pm
Devens Commons Center
31 Andrews Pkwy, Devens, MA 01434
Register Here: https://fs16.formsite.com/mcoa/k9pgppnir4/index
9:30 Registration and Continental Breakfast
10:00 Welcome and Introductions
Betsy Connell, MCOA Executive Director
Marge Yetman, Director of Burlington COA/Board Chair
Elizabeth Chen, Secretary of Elder Affairs, Commonwealth of Massachusetts
10:45 Workshop Session 1
- MARKETING BEST PRACTICES FOR SMALL & RURAL COAs
After defining marketing and why it is important for small and rural COAs, Barrie Atkin will share a range of free and inexpensive best practices to help your COA – and the amazing work you do – become better known in your community. Barrie will also discuss marketing practices that can improve perceptions of your COA/Senior Center and older adults in your town.
Barrie J. Atkin, President, Atkin Associates LLC
- STRENGTHENING SMALL (but mighty) TEAMS
Engage and equip COA professionals for greater team connectivity
Shift happens. Staff move on (or frequently retire) … new people are hired. In our COA teams, we may have a mix of tenures, a mix of generations and or a mix of personalities. This session will provide simple strategies for solidifying our evolving teams. We’ll explore ways to build trust, make stronger connections and co-create the team culture we need and want on our mighty teams.
Callie Ritter, Principal at Positive Ripple Training and Consulting
- HELPING EVERY ADULT DIRECT THEIR CARE CHOICES: A SIMPLE APPROACH FOR GOOD CARE TODAY & OVER YOUR LIFETIME
MCOA has long partnered with Honoring Choices MA to support COA staff with a proven health care planning program to help adults improve access to timely, equitable care. We’ll bring you the latest informational fact sheets, consumer friendly tool kits, and conversation guides in our Who’s Your Agent? Program, a structured approach to engage adults in simple to serious illness planning conversations. We will review the:
- Getting Started Tool Kit to start simple conversations and help adults complete a free multilingual Health Care Proxy and Personal Directive;
- Next Step Tool Kit to build on conversations as health needs change and to live well with chronic and serious illness;
- Latest information on the state’s transition from MOLST to POLST Program to ensure the treatment preference of adults with serious illness are known and honored.
Ellen M. DiPaola, JD, President & CEO Honoring Choices Massachusetts
11:45 Lunch and Keynote
- SUPPORTING FAMILY SYSTEMS THAT HAVE EXPERIENCED TRAUMA
In this presentation Dr. Ana Trueba explains the intricacies and consequences of trauma, including anxiety and depressive disorders. She reviews signs and symptoms that may point to mental health struggles, and how we can better support our family members and greater community. Dr. Trueba highlights the importance of self-care and how we can improve our mental wellness through our daily practices.
Dr. Ana Trueba, Assistant in Psychology, Geriatric Psychiatry Outpatient Services, McLean Hospital
Instructor in Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School
1:15 Workshop Session 2
- PARTNERING ON PURPOSE : Simple strategies for successful collaboration
Join Adam Sutton, workplace wellness coach and popular keynote presenter at recent MCOA conferences, for an inspiring and energizing workshop specifically geared towards COA leaders. This interactive session is designed to engage and equip directors, board members and everyone else. Come connect with colleagues to explore:
- Enhancing relationships with colleagues and clients
- Creating community among all COA stakeholders
- Developing positive partnerships that last
- Learn, laugh and leave with an enhanced toolkit of techniques for communicating and connecting at your COA and beyond!
Adam Sutton, Principal, Adam Sutton Group, LLC
- DEMENTIA-FRIENDLY INITIATIVES – WHAT CAN I DO EVEN IF I DO NOT HAVE MONEY OR MUCH TIME?
Small and Rural communities face unique needs that can often be met through regional collaboration. The work on Age and Dementia Friendly (AF-DF) initiatives is no exception. Join us for a conversation with Meg Ryan, Regional Public Health Nurse with the Franklin Regional Council of Governments (FRCOG). Meg has been working to support communities collectively in the region in implementing AF-DF initiatives.
Where do I begin? What are the best ways to start? What resources are available to educate the communities in the region? What am I already doing with respect to building a DF community?
Bring your questions and challenges to feed a lively discussion about the work going on across the Commonwealth. Even if you sit in the back row, you just may be called upon to add your thoughts.
Meg Ryan, Regional Public Health Nurse, Franklin Regional Council of Governments
Patty Sullivan, Program Director, Dementia Friendly Massachusetts
- LOCAL FOOD, LOCAL ACTION: IMPROVING HEALTH IN OUR COMMUNITIES
Food is essential to survive but eating approaches vary widely. From farms to food policy councils, learn about the local (and regional) food landscape, their benefits and barriers, how to get involved as a COA to improve the health of older adults in your community.
Tara’s Hammes, RD, (She/her/hers), MCOA Director of Member Services – Healthy Aging and Nutrition
2:30 Workshop Session 3
- SUPPORTING, STRENGTHENING, COLLABORATING, AND BUILDING A HEALTH FAIR DAY EVENT
Working together can be a wonderful thing. Identifying a collaborative planning Health Day Fair event can be more helpful to ensure that folks are receiving the services and help they may need by seeking support, strengthening partnerships and collaborating the resources. With a collaborative effort from Pfizer, MA College of Pharmacy School, Walgreens, (Wachusett Medical Corp/Local–VNA), the Lions Club, and the Senior Center this pilot program will provide lessons learned.
Eileen Clarkson, Director, Barre COA
Tim Temple, MBA, Vaccines Account Manager – Massachusetts, Pfizer Vaccines
- PIONEER VALLEY MEMORY CARE INITIATIVE: BUILDING THE VILLAGE
This workshop will describe the development and implementation of an innovative and collaborative community-based program for the dyad of older adults with dementia and their family caregivers. This grant-funded program incorporates geriatrics assessment tools and UCSF Care Ecostyem’s evidence-based protocols into an individualized care plan which supports the dyad. We partner with local organizations, provide education to caregivers and community members and pair the dyads with trained Dementia Volunteers. We have seen how this replicable program has provided personalized care and increased social connections for both the older adult with dementia and their family caregiver and will work to expand it over the coming years. There will be ample time for questions and to share resources.
Dr. Rebecca Starr, Medical Director of Geriatrics for Cooley Dickinson Hospital
- MOBILITY MANAGEMENT: A CREATIVE APPROACH TO RURAL TRANSPORTATION
“Mobility management” is an approach to transportation that puts the older adult at the center: helping older adults learn about and learn to use existing transportation options, and bringing organizations together to collaborate on creative solutions to fill gaps and address unmet transportation needs. Beth Kramer of Healthy Aging Martha’s Vineyard will share their journey of how over the last few years they have assessed the mobility needs of older adults on Martha’s Vineyard, highlight the steps they have taken to pilot new transportation services to fill gaps, and reflect on their successes, challenges, and future goals. Rachel Fichtenbaum of MassDOT Rail and Transit will highlight grant opportunities that can support local and regional mobility management efforts in Massachusetts as well as a study underway to look at supporting mobility management statewide. We’ll end with an open discussion for attendees to share your own strategies and ideas for how you help expand mobility for older adults.
Rachel Fichtenbaum, Manager of Grant Programs & Mobility Management, MassDOT Rail & Transit Division
Beth Kramer, Strategic Planning, Healthy Aging Martha’s Vineyard