Community support for older adults is greatly appreciated

Paul Hollings is Executive Director of Somerville-Cambridge Elder Services

Coronavirus has touched all our lives since it was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization on March 11. That makes the outpouring of support we have seen for older adults that much more inspiring.

At Somerville-Cambridge Elder Services (SCES) we have received many calls in recent days from local people who are concerned about how Coronavirus will impact their older neighbors. Many have donated or offered to volunteer, saying they want to do what they can during this difficult time.

To everyone who has reached out and offered to help, you have our deepest thanks. Given all the concerns and uncertainty that we are collectively facing right now, there is something deeply reassuring about people who see a crisis and just want to know how they can help. At a time when the virus is requiring healthy spacing to keep us safe, it’s a potent reminder of what ties us together as a community. Thank you again.

The Coronavirus situation is still unfolding, but we know it poses the greatest risk to older adults. We also know that SCES will remain open and is dedicated to helping older adults, caregivers, and people with disabilities throughout this crisis.

Want to get involved? Here are some ways you can help:


We have a need for following items: hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, spray bottles, disposable gloves, masks and shelf stable food. Please contact our Aging Information Center for more information about how to donate these items.  If you wish to contribute in another way, monetary donations are the most helpful, because they help us address the needs of clients as they arise, such as providing food and supplies not covered by other programs. The easiest way to give is by clicking the “Donate” button in the top right corner of our website,


SCES offers a range of volunteer programs, and we are actively planning ways that volunteers can assist local older adults who are staying in their homes. One possibility is safely dropping off food for clients whose usual grocery delivery is interrupted. Another is calling isolated clients regularly to check in. We would welcome volunteers who speak languages other than English, particularly Spanish, Portuguese, Mandarin and Haitian Creole.

If you would like to be considered for volunteer opportunities please fill out a volunteer application, which can be found on the “Volunteer Opportunities” page under the “Get Involved” tab on the SCES website.

For more information about volunteering, email

Thank you again for supporting our mission.


Paul Hollings is Executive Director of Somerville-Cambridge Elder Services (SCES) a non-profit agency that supports the independence and well-being of older people in Somerville and Cambridge. For more information, visit, follow us on Facebook or contact the SCES Aging Information Center for free advice and guidance by calling 617-628-2601 or email