Town of Mansfield, MA, Council On Aging, 255 Hope Street, Mansfield 02048 Phone: (508) 261-7368 Fax: (508) 339-4886

News for November 2017

FUEL ASSISTANCE

VOICES UNITED

HOLIDAY EARLY CLOSING

SUPPLEMENTAL NUTRITIONAL ASSISTANTS PROGRAM (SNAP)

PREPARING YOUR HOME OR APARTMENT FOR THE WINTER TIPS FROM BRISTOL ELDER SERVICES

INCLEMENT WEATHER POLICY

OPEN ENROLLMENT

WORLD SCIENCE DAY


FUEL ASSISTANCE
During the cold weather months The Mansfield COA Outreach Team is available to assist residents ages 60 and older with applications for heating assistance programs. Some programs require income eligibility. For information regarding your eligibility for fuel assistance programs contact Rose or Lynette at 508-261-7368. return to menu

VOICES UNITED
The Voices United program meets every other Monday. Because of the holidays, December 11th will be the only meeting date in December. return to menu

HOLIDAY CLOSING
The Mansfield Council on Aging will be open a half day on December 22nd until 12 PM and will be closed in observance of Christmas on Monday, December 25th. There will be no programs, transportation, or meals. Please plan accordingly. return to menu

SUPPLEMENTAL NUTRITIONAL ASSISTANTS PROGRAM (SNAP)
Mansfield Council On Aging and Social Services, in partnership with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance, is offering low-income Mansfield residents of all ages an easier way to apply for SNAP (food stamp) benefits. Staff at the COA and Social Services office at Town Hall are able to directly submit electronic applications for new benefits and renewals. Submitting an application through the COA or Social Services is a quicker and easier process due our direct link to DTA’s virtual gateway. Did you know that being SNAP eligible also gives you access to other low cost benefits? For additional information, or to apply or recertify for SNAP benefits, please call Lynette or Rose at the COA at 508-261-7368 for those who are age 60 or older. Residents under age 60 should contact Pam West, town Social Worker, at 508-851-6410.

Tips to Prepare for Your SNAP Appointment
When scheduling a SNAP appointment with Lynette, Rose or Pam fill it’s important that you are able to verify the things you tell us. You will be asked to provide various items such as:
 Personal identification;
 Verify that you are a Massachusetts/Mansfield resident;
 You will need to provide verification of income;
 Veteran status paperwork if that pertains to you;
 If you receive any type of pension;
 Verification of citizenship or non-citizen status if you are a non-citizen applying.

Helpful Information
Medical costs can be included as part of your application it could help you become eligible for more SNAP benefits if you give provide verification.

Information provided about your shelter or adult day care costs on your application could mean that you will not be asked for more verification. return to menu

PREPARING YOUR HOME OR APARTMENT FOR THE WINTER TIPS FROM BRISTOL ELDER SERVICES
• Winterize your home to extend the life of your fuel supply by insulating walls and attics, caulking and weather-stripping doors and windows, and installing storm windows or covering windows with plastic.

• Winterize your house, barn, shed or any other structure that may provide shelter for your family, neighbors, livestock or equipment. Clear rain gutters; repair roof leaks, and cut away tree branches that could fall on a house or other structure during a storm.

• Maintain heating equipment and chimneys by having them cleaned and inspected every year.

• Insulate pipes with insulation or newspapers and plastic and allow faucets to drip a little during cold weather to avoid freezing. Running water, even at a trickle, helps prevent pipes from freezing.

• All fuel-burning equipment should be vented to the outside and kept clear.

• Keep fire extinguishers on hand, and make sure everyone in your house knows how to use them. House fires pose an additional risk, as more people turn to alternate heating sources without taking the necessary safety precautions.

Learn how to shut off water valves (in case a pipe bursts). Hire a contractor to check the structural ability of the roof to sustain unusually heavy weight from the accumulation of snow or water, if drains on flat roofs do not work.
Source: ready.gov return to menu

INCLEMENT WEATHER POLICY
Winter begins December 21st and with New England’s unpredictable weather we need to be prepared. The COA would like to remind Mansfield seniors that the following inclement weather policies that are in place:

• The COA follows Mansfield Public Schools cancellations if schools are cancelled for the day, COA programs are cancelled, there are no services available and Home Delivery Meals may be cancelled.

• If school start time is delayed, depending upon the weather conditions, COA programming may be delayed or cancelled. During adverse weather conditions staff will be in the office as soon as possible and it is advisable to call the COA to determine the status of the programming and meals for the day

• During the inclement weather, even if the COA programs and services are cancelled, GATRA, Medical Transportation through Bill’s Taxi may be still open. For ride status, please call Bill’s Taxi at 1-800-529-8294

• As with all situation safety is the best policy. If conditions are unsafe, stay home until conditions improve

• If during the weather emergency you are in need of emergency assistance, do not hesitate to call 911!

For any question regarding the weather policies, please contact the COA at 508-261-7368. return to menu