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Credit where credit is due

Posted: December 24, 2009 3:22 p.m.
Updated: December 25, 2009 4:55 a.m.
 
First and foremost, we want to thank Jeanne Wray for her letter to the editor on Dec. 9, “Canines over seniors.”

Her letter denotes concerns and sensitivity that are shared by approximately 8,000 of our community’s elders who also participate in one or more of our agency’s offerings.

However, the city of Santa Clarita deserves much credit for helping senior citizens.
Were it not for the city of Santa Clarita, its past and present City Council and its supportive staff, we would truly just be a shadow of ourselves.

Yes, we face many challenges from a financial point of view that just give credence that our mission-driven success is a two-edged sword. Let us count the ways that the city of Santa Clarita and its leadership have supported us for almost two decades.

Without the city, we could not have built two senior affordable housing communities.

We would not have the current small expansion nearing completion on Market Street.

We could not have assisted hundreds and hundreds of residents (mostly seniors and single mothers) with housing rehabilitation services that protect blight and health-and-wellness issues.

We would not have more than 100 different choices for inter-generational recreation and life-long learning; we would not have the ability to provide approximate 30,000 passenger trips annually for our elders who can no longer drive.

We could not have kept our promise that not one senior will go hungry for those who are home-bound; there would not be continued directed care management without their help.

Truly, the list goes on and on. We enjoy a very close working relationship and we know that our city cannot be the end-all to our ever-growing needs to provide for our elders when they need some assistance.

To the city’s credit, it has never not assisted us when there is no other place to turn.

What will change in time is a recognition that our elders are equally vital to our community and deserving of resources and support from the community at large equal to the altruistic giving for children.

It is our community and private sector, beyond our elders themselves, where we have to do a better job of explaining and demonstrating how vital our programs are to the quality of life for everyone in our community.

In the meantime, our most profound appreciation goes to the leaders of the city of Santa Clarita and our private supporters during this Christmas season.

We are also profoundly appreciative to Jeanne Wray and all others who advocate and educate on our behalf.

Our need for support is a testimonial to our good work and the thousands of elders who come to us each year with trust and knowledge that their lives will be enhanced by caring and supporting one another and the SCV Senior Center.

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