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Licking County Seniors Win Big through New Partnership

NEWARK, Ohio, October 22, 2019 – A groundbreaking partnership is forming in Licking County that will change the face of delivery for adult senior services. The Licking County Family YMCA Western Branch, the Licking County Aging Program (LCAP) and Central Ohio Technical College (COTC) have joined forces to benefit the county's rapidly growing senior population. Beginning in January 2020, seniors will be able to attend programs offered by all three institutions at one central location − the soon-to-be-completed, newly renovated Y Western Branch.

"This type of shared-space partnership to offer an increased breadth of services is not being done anywhere else in the county," said Dana Moore, Y Western Branch director. "It's truly a unique collaboration between public and private entities to offer a holistic approach to services for our maturing population."Image

Y Western's $2.8 million renovation will add new classroom, community, meeting and multi-use spaces which will be cross shared between the three institutions. Area seniors will gain convenient and centralized access to programming representing three pillars of healthy aging: exercise and healthy living, continuing education, and social and recreational development.

"Members of COTC's Lifelong Learning Institute (LLI) will truly benefit from this triangular model of programming at one convenient location," said Vicki Maple, EdD, COTC vice president for economic development and innovative workforce solutions. COTC will move all of its LLI programming from the COTC Pataskala campus to Y Western beginning in January 2020. The LLI offers a year-round menu of non-credit courses, as well as lectures, writing workshops, a film study series, book discussions and "Coffee and Conversation" events that focus on various topics. "Through our shared resources we can together offer a dynamic continuum of programming for area seniors," added Maple. 

The LCAP will expand its offerings to western Licking County through the partnership. "We are so excited to offer residents the convenience of this new location for the many types of services we offer − from informal social and recreational activities like card groups, to speakers and entertainment," said Marti Fuller, LCAP associate executive director. "The result will be robust, centralized programming that will impact many more residents."

With Licking County's senior population on the upswing, the timing of the partnership could not be better. Citizens aged 60 plus made up 19.2%* of the Licking County population in the 2010 U.S. Census. That percentage is expected to grow to 25.3%** by 2030.

Y Western, which is located at 355 West Broad Street, Pataskala, will unveil its renovated facility with a public opening on Friday, January 24.

The Y is one of the nation's leading nonprofits strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Across the United States, 2,700 Ys engage 21 million men, women and children – regardless of age, income or background – to nurture the potential of children and teens, improve the nation's health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. Anchored in more than 10,000 communities, the Y has the long-standing relationships and physical presence not just to promise, but to deliver, lasting personal and social change.

The Licking County Aging Program is the largest senior center in the county. Located on the east end of Newark, the agency helps meet seniors' essential need for meals, health and home care and social connections right in their own neighborhood. Through its collaborative partnerships and integrated delivery of services, LCAP cares for one of the most diverse and vulnerable populations in the county. Whether it's in-home support, medical transports or simply a place to belong, LCAP helps each senior find a way to stay healthier and live with dignity while growing older.

COTC is a fully accredited, public college dedicated to providing high-quality, accessible programs of technical education in response to current and emerging employment needs. COTC is the only technical college in Ohio operating four full-service campus locations: Newark, Coshocton, Knox and Pataskala.

*U.S. Census Bureau
**Scripps Gerontology Center, Miami University