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Silver Circle to thrive, new senior services could be added

REPORTER FILE PHOTO | Councilwoman Chris Lewis.

REPORTER FILE PHOTO | Councilwoman Chris Lewis.

Silver Circle participants on Shelter Island aren’t losing the program they value. In fact, it could be expanded.

That’s the word from Councilwoman Chris Lewis, Town Board liaison to the Senior Activity Center.

With the retirement of long-time Coordinator of Senior Services Henrietta Roberts, who ends her job on Friday, comes an opportunity to reassess the entire operation, Ms. Lewis said.

The Senior Circle program provides a place to socialization, special activities and lunch for participants.

Before advertising for a replacement for Ms. Roberts, the Town Board wants to look at what programs — such as the Silver Circle — can be expanded and what new ideas might be added to serve the Island’s senior community.

The Senior Circle that will be on hiatus with plans to reopen Wednesday, April 13, Ms. Lewis said.

“It’s a great program. We can’t stop it,” she said.

Under Ms. Roberts’ stewardship and with the help of staff and volunteers, “They’ve done wonderfully imaginative things” for Shelter Island seniors, Ms. Lewis said.

She wants to present a comprehensive picture to her fellow Town Board members of how money allocated to the Senior Activity Center can best be used.

During the hiatus, Ms. Lewis will be looking at programs neighboring towns offer their seniors to determine if there are services that might be included here.

Senior services “grew like Topsy” when the Center first opened and this is an opportunity to evaluate all of the existing programs,Ms. Lewis said. There may be functions no longer needed or other needs not being met that could be added, Ms. Lewis said.

In order to redefine the position that Ms. Roberts has had, it’s important to take some time, she said.

But rest assured, Ms. Lewis added, as the crocuses begin popping out of the ground, the Senior Circle will be back.