|Table of Contents
- Reflections on the Village’s Second Year
- Village Volunteer Profile
- Enjoy Day Trips Without Driving
- Volunteer Opportunities
- Office Relocation in Our Future
- Sonoma County Joins Age-Friendly Movement
- Appreciating Village Donors
Reflections on the Village's Second Year
- by Anne Greenblatt,Steering Committee Chair
The Village Network of Petaluma has been steadily growing, shaped by the needs and inspirations of over 125 talented and committed members and volunteers.Our spring member satisfaction phone survey revealed that 76% of our members are highly satisfied and 24% are fairly satisfied with our growing Village community. Members report that our most useful volunteer service is driving, followed in order by friendly visiting, tech support, phone check-ins, home repair, and temporary home maintenance.
The social events most members appreciate are our monthly potlucks and game nights. Our most popular programs are Gentle Yoga, Qi Gong, the Garden Group, Book Group, and Legacy Writing Group. Many people also mentioned the singing group as well as programs on the SMART Train, emergency preparedness, Boost Your Brain, and de-cluttering – all programs members have told us they want. Our Program Team is doing a fantastic job in recruiting Village members, volunteers, and community members to lead interest groups and programs.
The response to our MedPal trainings has been remarkable. Volunteers have been trained by retired healthcare professionals to help members prepare for medical visits and to accompany them to take notes. The demand for MedPals has grown to include members wishing to support their family members. The Handyperson Team and Friendly Visiting teams are joining up to plan our first Mattress Flipping Days soon. Volunteers will also change and recycle smoke alarm batteries.
Our primary goals for this year have been to grow our membership and the number of volunteers, build stronger partnerships with community organizations, and offer subsidized memberships for people with limited income. We have been working with PEP Housing in an initial pilot project - and will expand this effort as we build the Membership Partners Fund. We are co-sponsoring a QiGong class series with the Petaluma Health Center and will be engaging with the Community Health Initiative of the Petaluma Area as that group plans for the future.
Additionally, we’re exploring ways we can support the new Age-Friendly Sonoma County initiative, based on WHO’s global network of age-friendly cities. The mission, closely aligned with that of the Village Network, is to enable full participation of older people in community life and promoting healthy and active aging.
Without a doubt, satisfied members and volunteers are our most effective ambassadors to help us grow, deepen our roots, and widen our branches to include more people in building a caring, vibrant, and connected community of older adults in the Petaluma and Penngrove area that will be here for all of us as we age. Stop by our office to pick up brochures to share with family members, friends, neighbors, healthcare professionals – wherever you think they will be seen by interested people.
It takes a village to build a Village!
Welcome to the Village
Sat., September 17, 11:00 – 12 noon
Thurs., October 13, 11:00 – 12 noon
Village Network Office, 402 Petaluma Blvd. North
An information meeting for adults 50+ and their familymembers who want to learn more about the innovativeVillage concept of “friends helping friends” to continue living vibrant, active, and connected lives in our own homes as we age. Learn how membership offers social engagement, transportation, home assistance, connection, and fun! Bring a friend or loved one, get your questions answered, and meet Village members and volunteers.
Weekly Walking Group
Tuesdays, 8:30 - 9:30 am. Meet at Walnut Park/4th St.
We have fun, great conversations, and exercise while exploring neighborhoods and gardens, or walking across the river. Everyonewelcome. Email Sue Miller email@example.com info.
Our Life Stories and Legacy
Tuesdays, 10:15 – 11:45 am, Village office. Newcomers welcome.
Our life stories and legacy are unique and important both individually and as a community. We explore ways to preserve, celebrate, and honor our experiences. Tell your story using writing and creative projects. We work together to create a setting which can inspire participants to celebrate their life stories and remember long-forgotten details. For more info emailinfo@VillageNetworkofPetaluma.org. Members free, non-members $5.
Qi Gong Class
Thursdays, 9:30 – 10:30 am, Village office. Newcomers welcome.
Fridays, 3:30 – 4:30 pm, Petaluma Health Center,* 1179 No. McDowell(starting Sept. 9)
* Co-sponsored by the Petaluma Health Center and the Village Network
Qi Gong is a gentle standing form of meditation and exercise that was developed in China thousands of years ago. Its benefits are strengthened nervous system, deep relaxation, and overall health and well-being. There are no restrictions on who may come - if you cannot stand, the poses can be done easily in a chair with benefit. It is preferable, but not necessary, to attend all classes. Members free, non-members $5.
Elad Levinson has studied Qi Gong for many years and is currently in teacher training level one of Qigong Dharma with teacher Teja Bell. He has also been practicing meditation since 1975.
Gentle Yoga for Balance, Flexibility, and Increased Energy
Wed., September 14 and 28, 11:00 – 12 noon, Village office.
Practice gentle yoga and breathing techniques, and improve posture, balance, flexibility, and energy. Can be done seated or standing - beneficial for all health levels. In addition, we’ll be investigating simple ancient hand gestures, or mudras, with accompanying meditations to support stress reduction and resilience. Come early, as we’ll start on time. Members free, non-members $5. Bring a large towel.
Pat Martin, CMT, EEMPC, CYT, has worked with hundreds of clients for over 20 years in her Petaluma practice. She focuses on optimizing health and managing stress, with tools including yoga, massage therapy, and Eden Energy Medicine. Pat teaches yoga at P.O.S.T. Wellness by Design.
Guide to Senior Housing and Care
Thurs., September 15, 11:00 – 12:00 noon
Tara Indorato from Sunrise Senior Living will describe the many types of senior living communities in our area, as presented in a handout that will be given to each attendee. She will describe services offered by each choice, questions to ask when visiting, and the costs related to each, to help increase our awareness of senior living choices and the necessity of planning ahead. Please RSVP toinfo@VillageNetworkofPetaluma.orgor 707-776-6055. Free and open to the public.
Fri., September 16, 1:30 - 3:30 pm, in a member’s home (Meets 3rdFriday of the month.)
Poets are invited to join us to share our poetry with one another. For more information and the location of the meeting, please contact Sam Doctors firstname.lastname@example.org 530-414-4032.
New!Film Discussion Group
Fri., September 16, 10:00 – 11:30 am, Village office
The Village Network of Petaluma Is offering a movie discussion club that plans to meet monthly on Friday mornings at the Village office. Each meeting will consist of a roundtable critique of the film we chose the previous meeting and have each seen on our own, and a decision regarding the next movie to see. If you plan to attend, try to see the new movieIthaca, with Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan.Come to the first meeting even if you haven’t seen the movie. Please RSVP to Stephanie at 707-776-6055 email@example.com, or Jerry Spremich (discussion facilitator), at 415-827-3206, if you are interested. For Village members and volunteers.
Village Game Night
Fri., September 16, 4:00 – 6:00 pm, in a member’s home. Newcomers welcome.
We will have potluck finger food and games. Join us, and bring a favorite game if you wish, or just bring yourself and have fun. RSVP for address to Stephanie atinfo@VillageNetworkofPetaluma.org, or 776-6055.
Village Field Trip to “Blooming BackYard”
Sun., September 18, 9:30 am – 4:00 pm
The Garden Group is planning to go to “Blooming Back Yard,” a self-guided tour of five unique gardens in and around west Sonoma County. The diverse gardens were chosen to highlight, demonstrate, and promote good gardening practices. Throughout the tour you will find demonstrations on growing vegetables, water-wise native plants, lawn replacement, drip-irrigation, companion planting, composting, attracting beneficial insects and bees, and more.While the five gardens are standouts for their distinctive designs, the tour also features a market known for garden-inspired crafts created by talented master gardeners. This event, offered bi-anually, is a fund-raising activity for theSonoma County Master Gardeners.Tickets are $35 in advance, $40 at the door, available athttp://ucanr.edu/survey/survey.cfm?surveynumber=18161. To arrange carpooling contact Jane firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wed., September 21, 4:00 – 5:00 pm, Leghorn Park. (Meets 3rdWednesday of the month.)
RSVP to George Beeler email@example.com. No experience necessary. Lots of fun!
TED Talks Discussion Group
Wed., September 21, 9:15 – 10:45, Village office
Join us for a lively discussion based on viewing several TED Talks - videos about Technology, Education, and Design, and everything in between. Our past meetings have included discussions of what constitutes happiness, modern secular culture, going nowhere, the Chinese zodiac, poetry, and a talking parrot. Next time, who knows? Attendance is limited to 10, so please RSVP to Stephanie atinfo@VillageNetworkofPetaluma.org, or 776-6055.
Volunteer Driver Training
Thurs., September 22, 1:00 – 4:00 pm, Village office
We’re looking for a few good drivers, as driving is one of our most requested and appreciatedservices. Completion of this training, in addition to the "Village Volunteer 101 Training,”is necessary before driving Village members to medical appointments, grocery shopping, Rx pick-up, or Village events. RSVP required: 707-776-6055 firstname.lastname@example.org.
Village Singing Group
No singing group in September – will resume Thurs., October 27, 3:00 – 4:30 pm (Meets last Thursday of the month.)
No prior experience or talent necessary, just a love of making music. We try many kinds of music – and have a lot of fun! RSVP to Sue Miller email@example.com location.
Fri., September 23, 1:30 - 3:00 pm, at the home of a member.
Join us for a discussion ofMr. Sammler’s Planet, by Saul Bellow. It is available at the public library and at Amazon.com. Contact Village member Jane Merryman for the address firstname.lastname@example.org.
Potluck Gathering for Village Members and Volunteers: Newcomers welcome
Sun., September 25, 4:00 – 6:00pm, in a member’s home.
NOTE NEW TIME FOR FALL!
A time to get to know each other better, share good food, enjoy our “conversation café,” and have fun.For members and volunteers. Space is limited, RSVP to Stephanie Wilkinson,info@VillageNetworkofPetaluma.org, for the address.
Learn About the End of Life Option Act
Mon., September 26, 10:00 – 11:30 am, Village office
This California bill became law on June 9. It allows dying Californians to make the end-of-life healthcare decisions that are right for them in the final stages of their illness. It is similar to the laws in Oregon and Washington that you might have heard about.Learn who is, and who is not, eligible under the law. Bring your questions and concerns to this important and informative program. You will receive materials that will help you discuss your wishes with your family members. Please RSVP toinfo@VillageNetworkofPetaluma.orgor 776-6055. Free andopen to the public.
Presenter: Dennis Pocekay, M.D., is a retired Kaiser physician who teaches Public Health at UC Davis and volunteers with Compassion & Choices: Care and Choice at the End of Life.
EFT “Tapping” Workshop for Pain, Anxiety, and Emotional Balance
Tues., September 27, 2:00 - 3:30 pm, Village office
EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) is apowerful self-help methodbased on research showing thatemotional trauma contributes greatly to disease.Over 100 published papers and dozens of clinical trials have shown that EFT tapping can rapidly reduce the emotional impact of memories and incidents that trigger emotional distress. Once the distress is reduced or removed, the body can often rebalance itself, and accelerate healing. EFT uses elements of Cognitive Therapy and Exposure Therapy, combined with acupressure, in the form of fingertip tapping on 12 acupuncture points, to relieve phobias, anxiety, depression, posttraumatic stress disorder, pain, and other problems.RSVP to Stephanie at 776-6055 orinfo@VillageNetworkofPetaluma.org. Members free, non-members $5.00.
Maryann Marks, MFT, is a marriage and family therapist in Petaluma who uses EFT in her psychotherapy practice.She has also been a volunteer with the Village Network of Petaluma.
Village Tech Workshop
Wed., September 28, 1:00 – 3:00 pm, Village office
Members at all experience levels welcome in this workshop, which will assist you with computer or cell phone issues. Topic for this session will be using the cloud for connectivity, storage, and back-up. Learn new ways to get things done and make your life easier. Led by Village volunteers Sarah Jane Catarozoli (a high school student), Tom Horst and Paul Greenblatt. RSVP toinfo@VillageNetworkofPetaluma.org.
- Want to be more comfortable using your computer, tablet, or smartphone?
- Having problems with your cell phone or computer?info@VillageNetworkofPetaluma.org.
Reminder: If you are a member and need someone to come to your home to help with a computer problem, you can also schedule an appointment with a Village tech volunteer.
Mattress Flipping Days Coming
in Late September
Teams of Village volunteers will visit homes of both social and regular members who are interested, to flip mattresses and change smoke alarm batteries. Contact Stephanie if you’d like to participate as a member or volunteer: 776-6055 orinfo@VillageNetworkofPetaluma.org.
Coming in October…
Presentation on SHARE Sonoma County: Shared Housing and Resource Exchange
Mon., October 10, 10:00 – 11:30 am, Village office
SHARE Sonoma County offers a Home Sharing Program to support seniors who wish to continue living in their own homes safely and affordably. SHARE facilitates secure home shares for homeowners and renters who are stressed financially, experiencing life transitions, looking for companionship, or needing basic assistance (service exchange) to help them to remain safely at home. This program has created over 120 successful home shares to date.
Amy Appleton, Executive Director of SHARE Sonoma County, created this program in 2014.
Support Group for People with Hearing Impairment, time TBA
As hearing impairment becomes an issue for more older adults, join us for a discussion of how we can support one another in adapting our environment, using technology, and researching affordable new ways to improve communication. The group is facilitated by Nancy Sullivan, Village volunteer with extensive life experience in this field.
New Village Birding Group
Last spring we learned about the kites that sometimes breed at Ellis Creek and we visited the heron and egret colony on 9th Street in Santa Rosa. This fall we are considering visits to Ellis Creek, where not much walking is required. If you are a seasoned birder or new to the pastime and would like to join us in exploring the bird life of Petaluma, please contact Jane Merryman,email@example.com, 707-762-1023, for more information.
Genealogy: How to Get Started
Thurs., October 27, 10:00 - 12:00 noon, Village office
This workshop will provide the tools needed to create your personal family tree, covering the basics of where to start, available resources, references and sourcing, formats and files, obstacles and successes, and tips and tricks. $5.00 for non-members. RSVP to Stephanie Wilkinsoninfo@villagenetworkofpetaluma.orgor 707-776-6055.
Rob Girolo, a volunteer for the Village, began researching his family history in 1996 to learn about his father's family whom he never knew. Since then, his family tree has grown to over 10,000 names and dates back to the 12th century. Although not a professional genealogist, he does have 20 years of experience.