Older Iowans face many of the same financial issues as younger residents, but they often have higher medical expenses and conditions that prevent them from being able to work. In Cedar Rapids, a church is helping those senior citizens with a program launched last June.
Mary Jean Carlstedt turned to the Neighborhood Church after her husband, Dave, returned home after a hospital stay for health issues. The church delivered free food and medical supplies to the Carlstedt’s door.
“When you’re horsing around with a really sick husband…to have those things brought to us…it was really nice,” Mary Jean said. Neighborhood Church Pastor Jim Coyle and Reverend Jerry Fagerland created the program to help seniors. Since last summer, Fagerland says the church has given away nearly $90,000 worth of supplies and almost 25,000 pounds of food.
“It’s a population that often gets overlooked and under-served. So, the need is just huge,” Fagerland said. Carol King appreciates the help she’s received from the program. “They give me things I never expected,” King said. “What do people that have less than I do? What are they doing? A lot of them have children.”
Within the past year, church members have helped at least 1,000 seniors.
More information: www.neighborhoodchurchcr.com
By Mark Geary, KCRG-TV, Cedar Rapids