Frequently Asked Questions
1. What age do I have to be to participate?
Various programs have different guidelines but the basic ones are: 55 years for the Senior Center, Town Bus and NKSA; 60 years- Sea Breeze Dining and Meals on Wheels. Exceptions are made for spouses and people with disabilities. Some State and Federal Programs such as RIPAE, Housing, Medical Assistance, Heat & Energy have other restrictions such as income.
2. Do I have to join the Senior Association to participate?
No, all programs and services are available to members and non-members alike. However, we encourage you to join the North Kingstown Senior Association. It is open to residents and non-residents alike and there are a number of benefits. Plus, you'll be a part of a 800+ member organization well known for assisting the senior population in North Kingstown. For complete information about joining, visit the North Kingstown Senior Association Page.
3. What are some of the benefits of joining NKSA?
Receive your newsletter in the mail, receive voting rights on issues and business conducted at the NKSA Annual Meeting. Membership renewal which is in January and become a part of a 800+ member organization well-known for assisting the senior population in North Kingstown.
4. Is North Kingstown residency required?
Yes & No. Residents and non-residents are eligible to join NKSA. The Center with so much Federal and State dollars involved, is open to all; however, the bus and Social Services home visits are limited to North Kingstown residents.
5. What types of programs does the Senior Center offer?
As a recreational center Beechwood House offers a variety of programs and classes to enhance the lifestyles of older adults. These include exercise classes such as Yoga, Tai Chi, Strength & Stretch, Jazz Bar & Toning, Zumba, and Line Dancing to name a few. Health Wellness programs which include Health clinics, Glaucoma Screenings, Cholesterol screenings, Podiatry services and alternative therapies such as Reflexology and Massage. Popular activities at the Center include Social Activities, Special Events, Arts and Crafts classes, cards and games, Bingo as well as monthly day trips. Please call our office at 268-1590 for further information or look over our monthly newsletter attached.
6. Is there more to the center than classes and programs?
1. Staff in the Social Services Department can assess problems brought to their attention by concerned parties. If Social Services can solve the initial problem no further action is taken other than to continue to monitor the situation. If it is an abuse or self-neglect case, state law requires additional reporting to the RI Department of Elderly Affairs. 2. Social Services can assist in advocating for seniors who may need various types of services. The Senior Center attempts to assist seniors and their families in areas of need. 3. People caring for loved ones receive assistance both through support groups and Caregiver training workshops. Referrals can be made for respite care and information is provided on various issues involved in care giving. 4. In addition, if a senior is experiencing mental changes, becoming confused, or increasingly forgetful, Social Services can arrange for a geriatric assessment to determine the cause of the problem.
7. How do I determine if I am eligible for medical assistance?
Call Medical Assistance 267-1030 0r 1-800-862-0222 OR Go to DHS Website: http://www.dhs.ri.gov/
8. How do I apply for food stamps and/or medical assistance?
Food stamp information 1-800-539-2138 for Eligibility Requirements go to Food Stamps Website: Food Stamps
9. Are meals available at the Senior Center?
Absolutely. Lunch is served daily in Seabreeze dining at Noon. Beechwood Cafe is also available for flexible dining between 11:00am and 1:30pm daily and offers a varied fare such as salads, sandwiches, fresh fruit, yogurt and desserts. Please visit nutrition services for costs, reservations and this month's delicious menus.
10. What should I do if I need transportation?
Call the Center Office at 268-1590 for more information or requests regarding transportation services. The Town bus, provides transportation into the Center and Local Medical Appointments within town. Your appointment can be scheduled if requested at least 48 hours in advance. Click on Transportation for more information.
11. How would I get Meals-On-Wheels?
In North Kingstown, the local Meals on Wheels is a branch of Meals on Wheels of RI, which maintains an office in Providence. The drivers and participants are scheduled by a volunteer coordinator. Enrollment, some coordination and administration is done through the Social Services Department at the Senior Center. To receive Meals on Wheels certain criteria must be met and there is a recommended donation of $ 3.00 a day usually collected weekly. Again, as with Sea Breeze Dining, no one is turned away for lack of payment. For further information on Meals on Wheels please call (401) 351-6700.
12. Where does the funding come from?
The various programs & services require many funding sources:
1. The Town of North Kingstown provides the major funding for staffing, bus, supplies, inside & outside maintenance, heat, light, electricity, and of course the building and allied insurance; this amount equals over $ 365,000 per year.
2. A State Legislative Grant provides $8,311 at present.
3. The North Kingstown Senior Association provides programs & supplies funding in the amount of approximately $ 10,000 per year plus funding for special projects.
4. The remainder is funded through grants from RI Department of Elderly Affairs as well as donations from other grant sources, businesses and individuals.
5. Seabreeze Dining under Blackstone Health Inc. is federally funded by the Older Americans Act.
13. Does the center accept donations from individuals?
Again there are various ways to do this:
1. North Kingstown Senior Services has two escrow funds (carried over year to year) are set up through the Town of North Kingstown to provide for center needs not met with other funding. A person may also donate a lump sum for specific program purposes to the Center through the Town of North Kingstown into these funds. Checks are made out to the Town of North Kingstown and mailed to 44 Beach Street, North Kingstown, RI 02852.
2. North Kingstown Senior Association--Individuals may also donation to NKSA. Please click North Kingstown Senior Association for information, including how to contribute to the senior center Capital Campaign.
14. What other services are available to someone who is homebound?
Our Social Services Office coordinates two visitation programs. First, The Senior Companion Program offers weekly visits by another senior who can provide assistance to the homebound senior. They also may provide respite to the family. Senior Companions are all over the age of 60. Second, The Friendly Visitor Program also provides visits to the homebound. The Friendly Visitor Program does not have an age requirement therefore anyone can volunteer to be a friendly visitor. If either program is of interest or if you are interested in volunteering your time to these valuable programs, please call the Social Services Office 268-1591. Social Services may also be contacted to problem solve unmet or unusual transportation needs.
15. Are there volunteer opportunities available at the center?
There are many opportunities for volunteers to be involved at the center. Call the Director or volunteer coordinator to discuss volunteer assignments. The Center appreciates and values volunteers and their contributions. The Center also works in conjunction with SHO (Seniors Helping Others), a locally based RSVP (Retired and Senior Volunteer Program) to place older persons in volunteer positions of all kinds.
1. I live in North Kingstown and have a shutoff on my utility bill or can't get a delivery of oil because I owe a bill. Where can I get help?
A. You can make an appointment with the Town of North Kingstown Social Services Department located at the North Kingstown Senior Center, 44 Beach Street, North Kingstown, RI 02852. The hours are from 9:00am to 3:00pm daily, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday or call 268-1591 or 294-3331 Ext. 403.
2. Where do I apply for Section 8 Housing for North Kingstown?
A. Rhode Island Housing Mortgage Finance Corporation located at 44 Washington Street in Providence handles the Section 8 Program for the Town of North Kingstown. The telephone number is (401) 751-5566. In addition, there are three senior, handicapped and low-income family housing developments that are designated as Section 8. Please contact Social Services for more information: 268-1591.
3. I live in North Kingstown, where do I apply for Heating Assistance and when should I apply?
A. South County Community Action in Peacedale administers the Low Income Energy Assistance Program. The telephone number is (401) 789-3016 or 1-800-432-2605. You should apply in the fall, September or October. For more information on emergency assistance call 268-1591.
4. Where do I apply for Food Stamps?
A. The Food Stamp Program is administered by the State of Rhode Island. The Food Stamp Office is now located at 195 Buttonwoods Avenue, Warwick, RI. Their number is 1-800-282-7021.
5. I just lost my job and have several children and no money. Where can I get some emergency food?
A. The North Kingstown Food Pantry serves anyone in Town with emergency food needs. They provide one week's worth of groceries and available supplies. The policy is to help no more than three (3) times in six (6) months. The phone number is (401) 294-7608.
6. How can I contribute to the North Kingstown Food Pantry?
A. Donations of non-perishable food items can be dropped off at the NK Town Hall, Town Hall Annex, NK Police Station, NK Chamber of Commerce, South County Printing, Standard Times Office, Wickford Baptist Church, First Baptist Church in NK, United Methodist Church, St. Paul's Church, St. Bernard's and St. Francis de Sales Church. Cash or check donations may be sent to the United Methodist Church, 450 Boston Neck Road, North Kingstown, RI 02852. Further information may be obtained by calling (401) 294-7608.
7. Where can I get commodities?
A. Commodities are distributed at the South County Community Action in Peacedale, RI on Thursdays between 1pm and 3pm. The telephone numbers are (401) 789-3016 or 1-800-432-2605. Eligibility is limited to Family Independence Program, Energy Assistance, Food Stamps, General Public Assistance, Subsidized Housing, Medical Assistance, Pharmaceutical Assistance to the Elderly, Supplemental Security Income.
8. I live in North Kingstown and I don't drive. I need to have transportation to a doctor's appointment. Can you help?
A. North Kingstown FISH (Friends in Service to Humanity) is a volunteer organization that gives rides to those who have no other means of transportation to medical or dental appointments or to related services. Service is limited by the availability of drivers. One week notice is recommended. Telephone number is (401) 295-1121.
FISH always needs volunteers for telephone workers and drivers and offers mileage reimbursement to volunteers.
9. I have no money and need medical care and dental services. Where can I go?
A. WellOne Primary Medical Center, 308 Callahan Road, North Kingstown, is open to all people. Fee for service is based on a sliding scale which is determined by income and family size. When fees are reduced, verification of income is required. The Center accepts most health insurance, Medicare and Medicaid. Call (401) 295-9706.