Seniors hold a special place in Florida, which has the nation's largest proportion of residents age 60 and older. There are over 339,317 year-round Broward seniors, with 11% or 37,325 living below the poverty line. Many of these seniors live alone and are finding it harder to afford and access proper nutrition, necessary medications and healthcare. They are struggling to stay in their homes and remain independent.
WHAT IS 2-1-1 TOUCHLINE?
2-1-1 Broward Touchline is a free service that offers a daily telephone call for people over 60 years of age who live alone and need someone to check on them. The purpose of the program is to ensure that older adults can maintain their sense of well being while remaining in their homes and community.Â Many times, receiving daily Touchline calls can prevent older adults from requiring more costly services or institutional placement.Â
Touchline calls also provide social contact and emotional support. The 2-1-1 counselor establishes a relationship with the senior and provides them with a sense of security and safety. In some cases, the Touchline Counselor may be the only voice or human contact the client will hear that day or week. One simple phone call can help give a client peace of mind knowing that a volunteer will be checking in with them at the same time each day.
HOW DOES TOUCHLINE WORK?
Each day, within a pre-determined time period, a 2-1-1 counselor calls registered seniors to make sure they are safe and well. If the 2-1-1 counselor is unsuccessful in reaching the senior after one hour of repeated attempts, the designated emergency contacts will be called and asked to check on the senior's well-being. If we cannot reach anyone, we contact the local police department to perform a senior wellness check to confirm their safety. In some cases, we will call to dispatch emergency services.Â
HOW DOES TOUCHLINE HELP SENIORS IN TIMES OF DISASTER?
Each year before hurricane season, the Touchline counselor will work with the participants to develop a plan of action in the likelihood of a storm. We review their options for evacuation and provide them with information and referrals about programs that can assist them with any special needs. After the storm, we will resume the daily reassurance calls to make sure all of our seniors are safe.
HOW TO SIGN-UP FOR TOUCHLINE SERVICES
Do you or someone you know over 60 years of age need to receive a daily reassurance phone call?Â If so, please fill out an application and mail to:
2-1-1 Broward Attn: Touchline Coordinator 3217 NW 10th Terrace, Suite 307 Fort Lauderdale, FL 33309