Maine Governor Mills Allocates $2.5 Million in Federal Funding to Aid Older Adults

Maine Governor Janet Mills recently unveiled a groundbreaking initiative in the state. The Governor’s Cabinet on Aging will spearhead a unique program aimed at connecting older adults and their caregivers with local aging resources, enabling them to age safely in their own communities. The program will be funded by a $2.5 million investment from the American Rescue Plan Act.

State, regional, and local partners will provide resources through community-based navigator programs across Maine. The program will also involve collaboration with the University of Maine Center on Aging and Maine’s Area Agencies on Aging. Community navigators will work together with older adults and their caregivers to help them access information and resources related to various areas of concern, including transportation, food, chores, social connectedness, and sustainable living.

Governor Janet Mills expressed her belief that aging safely and with dignity in one’s home and community is of utmost importance for older Mainers. She emphasized her administration’s commitment to supporting older individuals and their caregivers. The governor commended the new initiative as a significant stride towards providing the necessary resources and support for older Mainers to age safely in their beloved places. She expressed gratitude to the Biden Administration for their investment and acknowledged the collaborative efforts of various partners in Maine in making this initiative a reality.

According to Jeanne Lambrew, the Commissioner of Maine Health and Human Services, the recent storm serves as a reminder of the importance of neighbors helping neighbors in supporting older residents to live independently and thrive. She believes that this investment in community connections will result in long-term savings by preventing unnecessary hospitalization or nursing home care. Lambrew emphasizes that supporting older Mainers in their homes and communities not only benefits them individually but also strengthens the state as a whole.

Governor Mills established the Cabinet on Aging through an executive order in 2022 in recognition of Maine’s status as the oldest state in the country. The primary objective of the Cabinet on Aging is to facilitate Maine’s readiness and response to the demographic changes by promoting policies that ensure the well-being of aging individuals in a safe, affordable, and suitable manner.

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