May 11, 2004 > Gladys Wilson
by Dan Schoenholz
Having recently celebrated her 101st birthday, Fremont resident Gladys Wilson has some advice for young people. "Lead a clean life, don't drink or smoke, and you'll be OK."
Though she is wheelchair-bound and suffers from vision and hearing loss, Gladys continues to live at home thanks to the assistance provide by the Human Services Department through the Multipurpose Senior Services Program (MSSP). Julie Sakai, a social worker from the City, has helped Gladys secure paratransit services to her doctor appointments and find an in-home helper for daily tasks.
The Governor's proposed budget includes reductions in funding for MSSP. Alameda County also supports the MSSP program in South County, but these funds are at-risk due to the County's large budget shortfall. The "Meet Me on Broadway" fundraiser is one strategy to try to ensure that we can continue to help seniors like Gladys remain independent. Without the program, Gladys would likely end up in a nursing home, which would reduce her quality of life and at the same time cost taxpayers much more.
As Gladys says, "I never had anyone to help me before . . . Your services helped me to stay at home. I don't want to go to a rest home."