2023 Grants Challenge

Seniors Need Support and Attention Too!

Older adults in L.A. are often overlooked and neglected. WPV is a volunteer driven non-profit that enhances L.A. so that those that came before us can live out their lives with the care, dignity, and respect they deserve. For over 10 years, WPV has faced aging and sees older people not with dread, but as an opportunity to strengthen communities. At WPV, with the help from their neighbors, older people can continue to have access to vital social, health and other support, and that enables them to thrive and age in the neighborhoods they love.


What is the primary issue area that your application will impact?

Health Care Access

In which areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

West LA

South Bay

In what stage of innovation is this project, program, or initiative?

Expand existing project, program, or initiative

What is your understanding of the issue that you are seeking to address?

California's Department of Aging (CDA) reports there will be a 30% increase in population by 2060. Of that, the age 60 and over population is expected to grow at least 3 times faster, representing one of the fastest growing segments of the population. The CDA reports that in LA County alone, the age 60 and over population will increase by 171.3% between 2010 and 2060, and by 597.0% for those age 85 and older! Most older adults want to age in their homes/communities, many have or will develop chronic health issues such as diabetes, hypertension and depression, and most live on fixed incomes with limited resources. Initiatives like Age Friendly Cities, Livable Communities, Purposeful Aging, and CA's Master Plan for Aging focus on addressing the many issues the aging population faces, and while these are positive signs, only .13% (or $16.58 mil.) of LA City's $13+ billion 2024 budget is for aging. We are ALL aging and will need help one day. Why are we waiting to prepare for our future?

Describe the project, program, or initiative this grant will support to address the issue.

WPV is a mutually supportive "village" that focuses on ensuring that its oldest community members are not neglected nor forgotten. Most people want to age in the homes and neighborhoods they love. Sadly, many older adults end up alone, invisible to the outside world. Many do not want to be a burden to others, and eventually most experience mobility issues, vision/hearing/memory loss, and illnesses which limit their access to vital services and connections when needed most. WPV provides a cost-effective way for seniors and their families to benefit from the following, most of which are provided by volunteers from the same community: door-through-door, arm-in-arm transportation that is safe and reliable; assistance with picking up prescriptions, grocery shopping, running other errands; taking trash bins to the curb and back, chores/handywork in and around the house; friendly visits, walking buddies, regular social support calls to help ensure isolated seniors have vital social connections to others; assistance/training to use technology (iPads, email, virtual meeting platforms) to provide opportunities for engagement with others and lifelong learning; access to a variety of social/educational/health/wellness programs; referrals to trusted resources in the community such as caregiving agencies, legal/financial advisors, medical/health providers and other professionals. WPV is also working to identify data collection systems and analytic tools to support village work statewide.

Describe how Los Angeles County will be different if your work is successful.

WPV envisions an L.A. County where people of diverse backgrounds flourish and grow as they age, staying connected with care and support within their local community, regardless of economic means. WPV is committed to, and its success depends upon strengthening communities by bringing together as many residents as possible, of all ages, to support its oldest residents. Thus, it is not just older residents who benefit. Instead, WPV is an intergenerational organization that is mutually beneficial to all involved, young and old. Younger residents learn the value of respecting their elders and giving back to those who came before them, and through WPV they often learn and hear important and valuable life lessons. Older adults and recipients of WPV services can also give back by mentoring a young person, leading an activity, sharing their expertise, making phone calls to another older adult. It is a win-win for all involved and an example that should be established throughout the county.

What evidence do you have that this project, program, or initiative is or will be successful, and how will you define and measure success?

WPV will measure the impact of this project by increasing the number of new client members who receive help, increase the number of volunteers who provide help, track and be able to report on the number of service requests fulfilled (rides, running errands, social support visits, chores in/around the house, etc.), and track and report on the number of programs events offered. WPV will also conduct surveys/evaluations to measure client and volunteer satisfaction and impact. Additionally, WPV will be able to review the age and socioeconomic status of those receiving support to measure how well it is reaching those with the greatest needs. Finally, WPV will complete an analysis of data management systems and analytical tools to identify the best ways to collect, report and consistently measure the impact/effectiveness of villages.

Approximately how many people will be impacted by this project, program, or initiative?

Direct Impact: 400

Indirect Impact: 600