How to help seniors in Butler County who can’t leave their homes

Butler County has set up resources for seniors who have been stranded by the coronavirus.

Butler County Health Commissioner Jenny Bailer announced there are phone numbers seniors can call for help with things like grocery shopping or other errands they can’t do while locked in their houses. There is also now a way for volunteers to deliver services.

• Seniors who need help with anything at all can call: 513-721-1025

• Volunteers who are able to offer assistance can call: 513-623-3891 or email Jacqueline Hutsell

“As a community, Butler County is coming together to respond to the needs of people impacted by COVID-19 in amazing ways,” Bailer told the Journal-News. “Many, many people are volunteering to help — while complying with physical distancing, of course. We now have a solid method for connecting those senior citizens who have needs with other folks who have skills, services, or items to offer.”

RELATED: Butler County gathers task force to collaborate on coronavirus issues

The county commissioners declared a state of emergency on Monday and Commissioner Don Dixon also said he wanted a committee formed to figure out how the county can reach senior citizens directly, since they are the most vulnerable. He said much emphasis has been put on protecting nursing home residents and elderly who are already receiving services such as Meals on Wheels, but those people are in the minority of the elderly population.

“There’s a lot of seniors who don’t fall into any of those categories,” Dixon said. “I don’t know how you get to those folks, maybe having a senior hotline or something, because a lot of them are afraid to ask, or don’t know how to ask and I have to think it’s terribly frightening for those folks.”

Commissioner T.C. Rogers said he knows of many able-bodied residents who would love to help out, going to the grocery store or running other errands so those people can stay safe.

“I know of one subdivision and many other people that are just chomping at the bit to help,” Rogers said. “I think that is something we commissioners should come up with a way to facilitate this and get this done with private and public entities.”

Bailer had already convened a task force composed of a diverse group of decision-makers countywide. They met on Monday and announced the helplines Thursday.

“It is important to have these systems in place well ahead of any critical situations and we are happy to share them with you,” Bailer said today.

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