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Aging-in-Place Movement Grows With Formation of Dupont Circle Village

By Marilyn Newton*

 

Accompanying images can be viewed in the March 2009 issue pdf

The Dupont Circle Village launched its membership drive on February 24th at the historic Sumner School, attended by more than 80 neighborhood residents. Dues will be $450 a year for an individual and $600 for a household, with a goal of getting 150 members by later this year, when the Village hopes to be able to hire an executive director and expand the services it offers.

Board President Gerald Schwinn announced that the Dupont Circle Village is slated to receive a $15,000 grant from the DC Office of Aging, part of the city government’s one-time support of the aging-in-place movement.

The focus of the Village is on core components which enable older people to enjoy their daily lives in the neighborhood and to stay in their houses, condos or apartments for the foreseeable future. Volunteers are being recruited to provide transportation to doctor appointments and shopping. A list of reliable vendors is also available. Beyond this, the Village is creating a sense of belonging to the neighborhood as members share activities that sustain friendships. A group is meeting three days a week at the Circle to walk together. Volunteers competent on the computer are helping newer computer users gain skills. Others are being called on to perform household tasks.

Memberships are now available to all Dupont Circle residents regardless of age or income level. Dues are being prorated for the remaining months of 2009. In addition to dues for members and households, a “Membership Plus” category is available for low-to-moderate-income families. For the past six months, volunteers have provided services to anyone who asked. As of May 1, the Village services will be available only to its members.

Dupont Circle Village is incorporated in the District of Columbia as a non-profit organization and recently was granted 501(c)(3) tax exemption status by the Internal Revenue Service. In addition to the $15,000 from the DC Office on Aging, the Village earlier received a $3,000 grant from the Dupont Circle Citizens Association.

*The writer, a 25-year Dupont Circle resident and a board member of the newly formed Dupont Circle Village, is a former ANC-2B commissioner and former Dupont Circle Citizens Association (DCCA) board member, and also serves as chair of the DCCA’s Call Box Committee. Other Village board members include Gerald Schwinn, Mary Braden, Iris Molotsky, Peggy Simpson, and Abigail Wiebenson.

Copyright (c) 2009 InTowner Publishing Corp. & Dupont Circle Village. All rights reserved.