Dignity in Aging: New Support Helps Senior Center Break Through Isolation In Broward

July 23, 2020
New support from the Community Foundation of Broward has helped the Daniel D. Cantor Senior Center re-open with new safety measures such as taking temperatures at the door, wearing masks, seating everyone at least six-feet apart and more.

Staying home to avoid a pandemic is much more than an inconvenience for Broward seniors who live alone. The isolation can fuel depression. Lead to malnutrition. Even worsen dementia.

So, when the coronavirus quarantine temporarily closed their doors, the team at the Daniel D. Cantor Senior Center in Sunrise switched from serving meals to having them delivered.

With the center’s regulars – most near 90 years old – cut off from bingo, movies, dancing and other activities, the Cantor team took to the phones to check on their well-being. To help them get their medicine. Just to give them someone to talk to.

And when the Daniel D. Cantor Senior Center this summer was one of the first local senior facilities to re-open, they created new safety measures – taking temperatures at the door, requiring masks, seating everyone at least six-feet from each other and more – that have become a model for other centers to follow.

“This place keeps them alive,” said Sevim Randall, a volunteer at the senior center. “This is their lifeline. This is where they find people. This is where they have community.”

Now, thanks to the power of local philanthropy, more places like the Daniel D. Cantor Senior Center are getting an infusion of support to help some of Broward’s most vulnerable residents face this crisis.

More lifelines to break through senior isolation are reaching out all across Broward, supported by new “Dignity in Aging” grants – made possible by the Community Foundation of Broward’s groundbreaking collaboration with the Jewish Federation of Broward County, United Way of Broward County and The Frederick A. Deluca Foundation.

This summer, support totaling $606,728 from this innovative partnership has fueled nine grants to provide seniors home visits, help to combat depression, access to arts programs, transportation and much, much more.  

These nine new grants are a continuation of the Dignity in Aging Funding Collaborative’s effort to create a greater safety net of services for seniors in Broward, which has Florida's fastest growing population of people over 85.

The collaboration started in 2018, when support from the partnership helped produce a landmark study entitled, “The Silver Tsunami: Is Broward Ready?”  The study identified challenges such as high medical costs, limited housing options, unaffordable home care, the detrimental effects of senior isolation and long waiting lists for help.

Those challenges are growing even more daunting for Broward’s seniors during this unprecedented health and economic crisis.

The Community Foundation has identified Dignity In Aging as one of Broward’s Issues That Matter – 10 challenges that affect us all and are vital to Broward’s future.

Thanks to our Fundholders, whose charitable Funds fuel support for Broward’s most pressing issues, we are able to tackle Broward’s Issues That Matter during this crisis and beyond.

The Community Foundation’s contribution to the collaborative's nine new Dignity In Aging grants was made possible by the support from the following charitable Funds:

  • Susan E. Sachs Field of Interest Fund
  • Discretionary Community Fund
  • Ruth H. Brown Fund for the Arts
  • Alvin and Gloria Ross Community Care Fund
  • Jack and Ginger Weinbaum Fund
  • Jonathan Dominguez Fund
  • Jan Moran Unrestricted Fund
  • Oakland Park Woman's Club
  • Leonard and Antje Farber Endowment Fund
  • Community Concerts Association of Fort Lauderdale Performing Arts Fund
  • James and Lynn LaBate Family Fund
  • David and Francie Horvitz Family Fund
  • Alvin and Gloria Ross Community Care Fund
  • Lucille Harris Mann Fund
  • Ron Castell Memorial Fund
  • Deinhardt Charitable Fund
  • Drial Foundation Fund
  • Kresge Unrestricted Fund
  • The Wil and Susan Greaton Fund
  • Mary N. Porter Community Impact Fund
  • Frank P. and Blanche S. Buck Fund
  • Patty and Kurt Zimmerman Charitable Fund
  • Mary and Alex Mackenzie Community Impact Fund
  • Community Impact Fund
Contact Information

To learn how you can support Dignity In Aging through a charitable Fund at the Community Foundation, contact Vice President of Philanthropic Services Nancy Thies at nthies@cfbroward.org or 954-761-9503.

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