Elder Justice

Resources

The Council on Aging of Buncombe County has a mission to “assure access to resources that help adults age with choice”. They offer a variety of resources to help seniors and caregivers. In particular, they have an Elder Justice Navigator that provides care consultation, information and assistance for persons that have concerns about elder abuse, such as frauds and scams, abuse, neglect and self-neglect, or exploitation. We serve adults age 60 and over in Buncombe County. The contact is Daniel Mendez, at 828-277-8288, or danielm@coabc.org.

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has a division for Aging and Adult Services. They offer a variety of data reports and resources here.

The Area Agency on Aging is part of Land of Sky Regional Council. The link lists a variety or resources including this link to the Buncombe County Aging Plan.  Their Ombudsman is an important resource for those with older adult issues.

The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at UNCA is the “Center for Creative Retirement” in WNC. Many people join to take classes, but there are opportunities to advocate on issues that are important to seniors. OLLI’s Civic Engagement Committee “seeks to identify, define and develop a sustainable plan of action which addresses signature social issues in Greater Asheville that engage and provide a significant volunteer experience among the OLLI membership community.”

AARP NC serves the Mountain Region of North Carolina. In addition to advocacy work noted below, they provide a variety of activities with some highlighted at this link.

Key Allies

The Buncombe Aging Services Alliance (BASA) gives providers space to learn how to work with greater continuity when serving the multi-faceted needs of older adults living in Buncombe County. BASA develops and implements a 5-year strategic Aging Plan.

Get involved: For more information on BASA or to attend monthly meetings, contact Stephanie Stewart, stephanie@landofsky.org.

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AARP NC in the Mountain Region serves Western North Carolina through advocacy and community outreach efforts and volunteerism.  AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, social welfare organization with a membership of 1.2 million in NC and a total of nearly 38 million nationwide.  AARP helps people turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities and fights for the issues that matter most to families — such as health care, employment and income security, and protection from financial abuse. AARP NC in the Mountain Region provides advocacy on local, state and federal public policy issues that impact the 50 year+ population. On the federal level, you can find opportunities to affect public policy on those elder issues at this website.  

Get involved: Contact Rebecca Chaplin, Associate State Director, at rchaplin@aarp.org, (828) 380-6242.

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The Buncombe Elder Justice Coalition, an initiative of Age-friendly Buncombe County, is a community-wide collaboration and includes older adult volunteers and professionals from various disciplines including social work and human services, elder law, law enforcement, criminal justice, healthcare, care/case management, aging services, and many others.

Get involved: For more information, contact the Elder Justice Navigator, Daniel Mendez at danielm@coabc.org from the Council on Aging or email bcncagingplan@gmail.com.