Who Will Be There for the Senior in Your Life?

Ever wonder about the well-being of your grandparents’ mental health, when they’re home alone? Afraid they may be feeling depressed, helpless, or like no one cares about them?

Switchboard’s Seniors Never Alone Program (SNAP) is a voluntary program that is here to help. SNAP aims to provide telephone reassurance for seniors 65 years of age or older in Miami-Dade County, who live alone or with another senior. Enrolled seniors are called at least once a week by Switchboard’s reassurance counselors. The weekly calls help by consistently promoting mental health, ensuring safety and offering moral support for daily challenges. For many of our enrolled seniors, we are the only human voice they may hear for weeks.

Calls can range from a basic check-in, to emergency situations, to simply conversing about their day – just for the hope that someone would listen. Since many of the enrolled seniors are too frail or ill to even leave their homes, this provides a sense of companionship. In addition to companionship, SNAP provides crisis counseling, suicide prevention, information and referral, and case management services for its seniors. Calls from the reassurance counselors also ensure that someone is aware of their well-being, considering that they live alone it is very probable no one would notice if something happened to them.

The program is also connected through Switchboard’s Contact Center allowing seniors to call in 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. The program provides services in English, Spanish, and Creole.

May is National Mental Health Month, let’s increase awareness and not let the seniors in our lives go unnoticed. If you know any elderly person that would benefit from SNAP, please advise them to call 305-646-3606 for more information or to enroll. SNAP provides weekly reassurance telephone and Skype services and best of all it is free of charge.