Adult Day Service Program accepting clients

NASHUA – Gateways Community Services is still accepting participants for its Adult Day Service Program, which offers daytime care and fun activities for adults with disabilities, as well as seniors.

“With the growing elderly population in New Hampshire, the need for these programs is on the rise and it is a great option for people who may not have caretakers at home or it could be for the caretakers who are trying to avoid putting their parents in a nursing home,” Gateways Community Services Director of Development and Communications Deb Tighe said.

“It gives participants the opportunity to come out of the house, they get medical oversight and socialization,” Tighe added.

The program has operated for more than 30 years and takes place at Alvirne High School from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Tighe said one of the greatest things about the program is its relationship with Alvirne.

Since the program is housed in the high school, it allows participants the opportunity to interact with high school students and vice versa.

Adult Day Services Program Manager Laurie Branchaud said the program partners with students from Alvirne’s Health Science and Technology Career Technical Education program.

“We pair up with the (Health Occupation Students of America) students. They come over and they’ll sit down and work on activities with our clients. The students will take one of our clients to follow through the semester and just kind of learn to socialize with the senior population,” Branchaud said.

“It’s such a great program, one that Gateways prides itself in,” Tighe added.

Aside from interacting with high school students, the program provides participants with an exciting environment.

Branchaud said they offer exercise every day that is adapted for everyone.

“We do it from our chairs and we offer some types of weights,” Branchaud said. They also offer cognitive exercises to get participants to remember events from their past.

“We do a lot of word games, celebrations. We talk about different cultures different places in the world – the people, the outfits, the food. We do bingo,” Branchaud said.

In addition, the program offers nutritious meals for breakfast and lunch. There are also nurses on staff to administer medication.

Participants range in age from ages 40 to 90. The program accepts several forms of payment, including out-of-pocket payments, long-term care insurance and Medicaid. It is available to residents in Amherst, Brookline, Hollis, Hudson, Litchfield, Mason, Merrimack, Milford, Mont Vernon, Nashua and Wilton.

According to Branchaud, the program is a win-win.

Branchaud said the program gives caregivers the opportunity to have a safe place to drop their loved ones off, while they go to work or do other things.

“I think the socialization aspect is very important for participants,” Branchaud added. “It’s been wildly successful for a long time.”

To learn more about the program, call 603-883-0994.

Grace Pecci may be reached at 594-1243, or at gpecci@nashuatelegraph.com.