Island Seniors: More than money on Foundation members' minds

BEVERLEA WALZ PHOTO | Officers of the Senior Citizens Foundation, from left: Diane Anderson, Ruth Staehle, Reeves Thompson, Bill Seeberg and Judy Daniels. Seated: Sy Weissman

The Senior Citizens Foundation of Shelter Island Inc. held its semi-annual meeting at the Senior Activity Center last Saturday morning.

• “The Foundation’s financials continue to be healthy,” said Director Judy Daniels after reviewing the July 31, 2012 Statement of Assets prepared by the accounting firm of A & A Williams.

• Director Bill Seeberg proposed reinvesting the Foundation’s securities to increase yield. The current interest in the Foundation’s CDs is close to zero. Bill is looking for a seven-percent return.

• The board authorized the writing of the annual appeal letter for 2012, as well as the cost of its printing, mailing and secretarial services.

• At its May 2012 annual meeting, Director Judy Daniels proposed that the Foundation send a semi-annual “Newsletter” on senior affairs to a select group of past donors. She said she would write it. The Foundation agreed to pay the cost of printing and mailing.

• The Foundation has a large investment in the Senior Activity Center kitchen renovation. Last July it gave the Town of Shelter Island a check for $8,000, to be restricted to the purchase of appliances and/or equipment required by the Suffolk County Department of Health Services (SCDoHS).

• Although the work outside the center on the well and septic system was completed on time, work on the renovation of the kitchen, which is extensive, seems to be slow in completion. President Weissman agreed to call Jay Card, the Commissioner of Public Works, to get a new estimate for the finish date.

If you recall, August 9, 2009 was the date the kitchen was closed by the SCDoHS.

• Judy Daniels proposed that the Foundation pay for the medical alert system that every senior who lives alone should have. The medical alert system consists of a call device worn around the neck and its call box. The two together make it possible for seniors to get emergency help as soon as possible. Payment would go only to needy, at risk seniors.

The Senior Citizens Foundation of Shelter Island, Inc. is a not-for-profit organization created in 1999. Its original mission was the acquisition of a structure suitable for a senior activity center.

By 2002, the town had inherited the lower part of the Medical Building off Route 114 south as part of a deal cut with the Shelter Island American Red Cross. The need for a senior center was eliminated and the Foundation’s mission changed.

Now, with the financial support of the Island community all over the world, it has made home-heating assistance available to needy seniors; “the File of Life,” which contains important information the 911 responders need on an emergency call; a 55-inch TV screen for the Activity Center; and the July 2011 donation to the town.

As President Weissman said at the close of a meeting last year, “We are a bank committed to caring for Island seniors.”