SOUTH SALEM, N.Y. – State Sen. Greg Ball (R, C – Patterson) stopped by the Lewisboro Adult Seniors’ weekly meeting at the South Salem Firehouse on Wednesday to meet with its leaders and discuss the group’s problems and needs.
“It’s critical during the tough economy to keep a finger on the pulse of what’s happening with these groups,” Ball said. “There are a lot of shut-ins out there and there may be a lack of resources. I need to see where I can be helpful with things like grants and other support.”
Pam Veith, Lewisboro’s senior adult director, said the biggest challenge her group faces is the lack of a dedicated meeting space. Currently, it uses the South Salem firehouse, but space is limited there.
“What we are finding is that a lot of our seniors are going over to Finders Hall in Ridgefield, Conn.,” she said. “They offer a whole lot of classes in things like photography. They have computers and a swimming pool. We can’t compete with that.”
Veith said that at one time, the group thought that it might move into one of the houses on the Wolf Conservation Center property when the WCC was planning to expand, but that project fell through
The Lewisboro Adult Seniors, which began 45 years ago, does have $12,000 saved in a certificate of deposit that it hopes to use on things such as curtains and other supplies if it does get a chance to take over an existing building.
“It would be nice to have a place that has a main room, and some sides rooms where we could have classes or play cards or the band could rehearse,” Veith said.
Ball said that as Albany gears up to prepare the next state budget, he wants to make sure the senior population in northern Westchester is taken care of.
“We want our share of funding in northern Westchester during the budget process,” he said. “You see similar needs throughout Westchester County. There are lots of folks on limited income and we can’t let them fall through the cracks.”
Ramona Pfair, the Lewisboro Adult Seniors president, said that while she appreciated Ball’s visit, she wasn’t optimistic about her group getting any help from the state or any other agency.
“Having our own place is a dream,” she said. “With this economy, it’s very tough. The fact that [Ball] circulates and comes around is a good thing, but I don’t expect anything to change.”