Author Archives: Brookline CAN

BrooklineCAN to Help Senior Center Recoup from Budget Cut

The BrooklineCAN Steering Committee has voted to make a gift of $4,000 to the Senior Center to help the Council on Aging adjust to a $90,000 cut in its budget.  Like other Town departments, the Council on Aging has received a big cut in its budget because of the recession triggered by the Covid-19 crisis. The gift from BrooklineCAN will be used to support the Council’s Information and Referral service and to help provide part-time custodial services. In addition, the gift will help to extend work on BrooklineCAN age-friendly business initiative.

BrooklineCAN is able to make the gift because a traditional annual meeting will not be possible this year. The funds we usually spend on food and beverages at our annual meeting will go instead to help the Council on Aging.

In place of its annual meeting, BrooklineCAN will be holding a virtual forum on September 10 on new housing for seniors in Brookline. See the article about the forum in this issue. Plan to watch the forum at home and provide your own refreshments.

Expanding the Supply of Senior Housing in Brookline: A Virtual Forum

In response to the dramatic growth of the older population, Brookline is expanding its supply of housing for seniors. A virtual forum sponsored by BrooklineCAN on September 10 at 6 pm will explain why more housing is needed for seniors and will profile new senior housing that is coming to Brookline. Jennifer Molinsky of the Harvard University Joint Center on Housing will provide an overview of the need nationally for increased housing for seniors driven by the growth of the older population. The panel will include Mike Jacobs, chair of the Brookline Housing Authority speaking about plans for replacement and expansion of the Col. Floyd development.  Rhonda Glyman of Center Communities will speak about plans for a new residential building on Centre Street. Representatives of Welltower senior living will speak about its plans for the Newbury College site. A representative of 2Life will speak about the Brown Family House on Harvard Street that is currently under construction.

The forum will be produced in conjunction with the Brookline Interactive Group (BIG) and will be conducted on the Zoom platform. Registration information will be in our September newsletter. Save the date.

September 1, 2020 State Primary

By now many of you should have received the absentee ballot mailer from the Secretary of State.  Fill it out and mail it to the Brookline Town Clerk. Remember to check which party ballot you want for the September primary. Postage is paid.  Once the actual ballots are available, the Town Clerk will mail it to you.

If you did not receive the absentee ballot mailer, the most likely reason is you applied for an absentee ballot for all elections in 2020.  You will receive the actual ballot when they become available. If you are uncertain call the Town Clerk’s office at 617-730-2010 and they can check on your status.

Or you can download the request form for an absentee ballot on the Town Clerk’s website https://www.brooklinema.gov/DocumentCenter/View/22091/Vote-by-Mail-Application- . Complete form and mail to Town Clerk, 333 Washington St, Brookline, MA 02445. Or you can scan and email the form to townclerk@brooklinema.gov.  Be sure your signature shows on the scanned form.

The sooner you do this the sooner you will receive your actual ballot. You can stay abreast of any new information at https://www.brooklinema.gov/131/Town-Clerk

Transportation Options for Older Adults

For the duration of the pandemic and while the Senior Center is closed to the public, we will be piloting a program to provide transportation to non-emergency medical appointments within Brookline and the Longwood area ONLY using the Senior Center Van and Bus.  Priority will be given to those residents who are currently using the BETS Program.  The hours are Monday to Friday 9am – 3pm.  Pick ups in Brookline will begin no earlier than 9AM and the last pick up in the Longwood area will be at 3PM.  Face coverings are required and there will be a limit to one passenger per vehicle, although you will be able to bring a PCA or companion if needed.  To schedule a ride, please call the Senior Center Van Line at least three days in advance at (617)730-2750. For information on other transportation options see https://www.brooklinecan.org/transpo_options.html

Reading Again in Brookline

For anyone eager to read a new book, the Brookline Public Library is back in business at all branches with a program of contact-less pickup. Here is how it works:

Visit the library’s online catalog or call/chat with a librarian at 617-730-2370 (ext.3). Place a hold on library material you select. You will be notified when your hold is ready to pick up. To schedule a pickup click here.  You also can call or chat with a librarian to schedule an appointment.

Your holds will be in a bag (or bags) with your name on it. If you have many holds, check to see if you have multiple bags. Items are checked out to your account when they are packed for pickup. Holds must be picked up at the branch where they were ordered.Click here for additional information.

In addition to selecting books from the library, you may purchase books from Brookline Booksmith (279 Harvard Street, Brookline), which has re-opened. Click here or call 617-566-6660.

Visit a Brookline Age-Friendly Business, Virtually or in Person

Although Covid-19 has temporarily closed many activities in Brookline, nearly 100 businesses are now open and have joined BrooklineCAN’s Age-Friendly Business program. Located throughout Brookline, including Coolidge Corner, Washington Square, Saint Mary’s Street, Putterham Circle, and JFK Crossing, age friendly businesses are open to seniors, wherever they may live. Seniors may patronize these businesses either in-person, via telephone, or online.

Brookline Age-Friendly businesses represent 12 types of establishments, including retail goods and services, food and beverages, banks and financial services, beauty, arts and entertainment, and health and medical.

Each business is provided with a “Brookline Age-Friendly” decal for posting in its window, proclaiming its friendliness to people of all ages and abilities. The decal indicates the business has more than a dozen attributes that make it hospitable to older people. A complete list of participating businesses can be found on the BrooklineCAN website at https://www.brooklinecan.org/afb_list.php. For more information, contact Beryl Porter at 617-610-1366.

ODICR Monthly Quiz

The Brookline Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Comm unity Relations (ODICR) has released a new Monthly Quiz! The Monthly Quiz is a great way to test what you know about Brookline and learn new things about your community! If you score a 10/10 your name will be entered into a year-end raffle!

The August Quiz is a way to test your knowledge on the US Census! To take the Quiz: Click https://www. brooklinema.gov/1514/Community -Quiz

To learn more about the Census and to complete the Census 2020 visit: https://2020census.gov/ .

Phone-friendly Web

When we created www.brooklinecan.org in 2011, we designed it for wide-screen desktop systems. Now many people use smaller phones and tablets. Our site could always use those devices, but the pages didn’t really fit. Now we automatically rearrange content so it displays comfortably on all devices. As screens get narrower so do paragraphs; two columns become one; the menu disappears but can be recalled by pressing a button. You can see these changes on your desktop or laptop computer by narrowing the browser window. We hope this will make our site more usable on all screens.

Springwell Grab-and-Go Lunch at the Brookline Senior Center

A new pickup lunch program has begun Mondays and Fridays at the Brookline Senior Center (93 Winchester Street).  To participate, call 617-730-2747 to reserve a lunch by 11:00 am two business days in advance.  Participants will receive a call confirming their pick-up time. (If you would like to cancel your meal reservation, please call by 11:00 am two business days in advance.)  There is a $2.00 suggested donation per meal.  You can obtain a copy of the monthly menu at WWW.SPRINGWELL.COM  The menu includes instructions for reheating frozen meals.

Zoom into ESL Conversation Groups

The popular conversation groups of the Friends of the Brookline Library for English language learners are now available virtually via Zoom.  For over a decade the groups have been running at the 3 town libraries. All involved, students and volunteers, feel that this service is an incredibly valuable resource offered to our remarkably diverse Brookline population. Knowing that in-person groups will not be available in our libraries  until 2021, the service is now available free to all interested members of the community using virtual group meeting technology.

Sessions offered every Thursday at 10:30-11:45am. To register please send an email to brooklineconversationgroup@gmail.com A Zoom link will be sent prior to Thursday.