From left: Hymie’s, Marrone’s Pizzeria.
Why she does what she does: We were blessed to have a lot of resources for my grandmother. And I recognized that, in this area, there are a lot of people growing older and living alone, with nobody there to help. I saw how attached people are to their homes. A lot of people grew up here, and they don’t want to go to a nursing home.
The best thing about living on the Main Line: There’s more and more diversity coming in, which I appreciate. I happen to be very close to the city, and I love being able to zip in and zip out. I absolutely adore all of the old, historic homes around here. Just driving through it, you see it’s a beautiful place to live.
From Left: Tango, Bryn Mawr Film Institute
Her day-to-day responsibilities as ElderNet’s executive director: I oversee all the programs and manage a staff of seven. I work with the board in doing the fundraising and the grant writing. All of our services are free, so we don’t have any income. Everything we do, we do through fundraisers, grants, newsletters.
How most people come across ElderNet: We get a ton of referrals through local faith-based communities, Bryn Mawr Hospital, Lankenau, doctors offices, families and friends. We work with Lower Merion police. They have us on call 24 hours a day.
A story that’s stuck with her: We received a call from a police officer who wanted us to check on an elderly woman. Someone had broken in through her window. The police went to fix the window, but she didn’t want to let anybody in. She had some mental health issues, and she’d become a really big hoarder; she’d made a fortress out of her things, to protect her. When she finally let me in, it was the dead of winter. She had no heat, electricity or running water. I called on Lower Merion Township for help. We were able to put her up in a hotel for two weeks, and the township went in there and helped clean her house, get her heat back on, and get the living conditions back to where it was a safe place.
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