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Senior organization launches a searchable website to link older residents with services

STORY BY MARY SCHENKEL (Week of November 19, 2020)

The seniors of Indian River County, along with their family members and caregivers, have a new resource at their fingertips after a local nonprofit launched a searchable website that details services available to the county’s older residents.

The Senior Collaborative of Indian River County website,, is searchable by keywords, provider name or category. Categories include health and medical, housing (including assisted living and skilled nursing facilities), food and meals, financial assistance, government agencies, recreation, arts and entertainment, and transportation. 

In conjunction with the website, the Senior Collaborative has set up a phone line to conduct telephone assessments and make referrals

“Our Navigational Program links seniors to providers both through our website and by telephone referral,” said Randy Riley, SCIRC executive director. “They can call us, and we’ll make a referral to several appropriate providers.”

With a median age over 51, Indian River County is the sixth oldest county in the United States. 

Abby Walters, who chairs the team behind the website, explained that seniors are frequently unaware of many services available to them. As an example, she mentioned SHINE (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Seniors), a free program that can assist with Medicare, Medicaid and health insurance issues. 

“Our goal is to have the most information we can possibly have for seniors in one place,” said Riley. 

The collaborative offers a complimentary membership and listing on the website for funders, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, providers, professionals, advocates and caregivers.

“One of the things with helping older adults is that we haven’t hit all of the issues that are going to come our way,” said Walters.  “I think we’re going to see more, because it’s a changing world.” 

Another project the Senior Collaborative has in the works is establishing a physical Senior Connection Center – a facility that would house case managers, a library of provider brochures and, eventually, specialized senior seminars, training and programs.