(Washington, DC) – This week, after thousands of residents and community members came together the 24th Annual Senior Holiday Celebration, Mayor Muriel Bowser and the Department of Aging and Community Living (DACL) announced the expansion of the District’s Safe at Home Program, which helps older adults live and age safely in their homes by funding modifications that reduce the risk of falls.
“In 2016, we created Safe at Home so that more seniors across the District could safely age in place,” said Mayor Bowser. “With this expansion, Safe at Home 2.0 will deliver a more holistic program for residents who would otherwise need to consider alternative housing options and, in turn, provide more independence, choice, and dignity for our older adults.”
The Safe at Home program was created by Mayor Bowser in response to concerns about falling or suffering from other household accidents. To date, the program has completed more than 5,500 projects for District residents. This allows District residents to continue to live in their own homes through the installation of safety adaptions such as grab bars, hand railings, stair lifts, and bathtub cut outs. While the program currently focuses on one of four Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s categories of falls risks – environment – Safe at Home 2.0 will now also include the three remaining categories for preventing falls: medication management, vision screenings, and balance/strength training.
“In a follow up survey, we learned that 99 percent of past Safe at Home participants were satisfied with the program, and 80 percent of those participants had not fallen since their adaptations were complete,” said Jessica Smith, Interim Director at DACL. “And while these statistics prove that the program is highly effective, we want to push ourselves to further alleviate the risks of falls for older adults. Thanks to the Mayor’s investment, we’re able to work with our partners, Home Care Partners and American University, to give seniors more options to reduce the risks of falls and support them as they age the way they want and choose.”
Beginning in January 2023, Safe at Home 2.0 will allow participants to voluntarily participate in vision screenings, medication management, and evidence-based balance and strength training classes offered by Home Care Partners and American University. Classes will take place virtually and in-person at all six senior wellness centers across the District, accommodating a variety of abilities.
To learn more about the Safe at Home program, visit dacl.dc.gov/safe-home.
To learn more about the balance and strength training classes, visit daclevents.splashthat.com or contact a senior wellness center near you:
Bernice Fonteneau Senior Wellness Center
3531 Georgia Avenue NW
Phone: (202) 727-0338
Wards 2 and 3
Around Town Satellite Wellness Program
4125 Albemarle Street NW
Phone: (202) 895-9485
Hattie Holmes Senior Wellness Center
324 Kennedy Street NW
Phone: (202) 291-6170
Model Cities Senior Wellness Center
1901 Evarts Street NE
Phone: (202) 635-1900
Hayes Senior Wellness Center
500 K Street NE
Phone: (202) 727-0357
Washington Seniors Wellness Center
3001 Alabama Avenue SE
Phone: (202) 581-9355
Congress Heights Senior Wellness Center
3500 Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue SE
Phone: (202) 563-7225