Harkins, Merski: Erie senior centers to benefit from nearly $50,000 in grants
ERIE, Jan. 7 – State funding of $49,383 will help Erie’s senior centers weather the financial impact of the pandemic so they can continue serving the needs of older adults and resume full-scale operations in the future, state Reps. Pat Harkins and Bob Merski announced today.
The lawmakers said the funding from the state Department of Aging will go to the area’s agency on aging – the Greater Erie Community Action Committee Agency – to be divided equally among the county’s senior community centers.
“Our area’s senior centers provide Erie’s older adults with incredibly important connections to the community,” Harkins said. “But like all other businesses and organizations, they are feeling the economic brunt of the pandemic keenly. This funding is going to give them the shot in the arm they need to continue operating so they can safely welcome seniors back to a full range of engaging activities once it is safe to do so.”
Merski said: “Our local Erie senior centers offer older adults access to vital services such as nutritious meals and transportation, but they also provide so much more in terms of quality of life –fitness, learning, volunteering and all the other activities that keep seniors engaged.
“The funding announced today will be a lifeline for our area centers, which will be able to use the money for COVID-19 mitigation, capital improvements and renovations, programs and services, technology, nutrition services, marketing and outreach, and rent and utilities.”
The lawmakers said each of the following Erie County centers will receive nearly $5,000 in funding:
Mercy Hilltop Center, John F. Kenney Center, Erie West Senior Center, North East Senior Center, Northwestern Senior Center, R. Benjamin Wiley Central City Activity Center, Union City Senior Center, LECOM Center for Health and Aging, Tri-Boro Senior Center, and Corry Senior Center.
The grant is part of a package of $2 million in funding to the state’s 405 Agency on Aging-affiliated senior community centers. The funding – appropriated by the General Assembly from the Pennsylvania Lottery – may be used for COVID-19 mitigation, capital improvements and renovations, programs and services, technology, nutrition services, marketing and outreach, and rent and utilities.
More information about the funding is available here.