Olympic Community Action Programs Programs
Early Childhood Services address the needs of children in our community at risk for continuing a life of poverty. We work with the children, their families and the community at large to help assure they have an opportunity to succeed in life. Enrolled children get developmental screening, individualized learning plans, at least two meals each day and an active learning experience. Each family enrolled receives support in accessing medical and dental care for their child, parenting education, home visits and help with finding needed services or resources in the community.
OlyCAP housing services include emergency housing in one county that includes emergency shelter, transitional housing for families in need and supportive permanent housing for seniors. The Weatherization program provides home weatherization for both mobile/manufactured homes and site buillt homes to save energy and increase comfort. Low-income homeowners and renters can also access help with energy costs through LIHEAP or utility based energy assistance.
Senior programs focus on this large area population, assisting them to remain healthy and independent in their community. Senior Nutrition Programs help increase the nutrient intake of older individuals who might not eat adequately. The Home Care Program offers in-home assistance with household chores, keeping homes and occupants safe, clean, fed and cared for. Our Encore! Program provides for the needs of seniors with disabilities or dementia and their caregivers, and the RSVP Program provides opportunities for seniors to interact with and remain productive in their community.
Recent Successes and Current Challenges
The Olympic Peninsula in Washington State has always been an area with a large proportion of United States Veterans. Proximity to various service bases such as the Navy in Bremerton and Everett as well as he Air Force and Army in Tacoma at Lewis McChord have resulted in a number of veterans choosing to locate in the rural areas of the Olympic Peninsula. Currently over 14,000 veterans live on the peninsula. A recent addition to the OlyCAP menu of services is a new Vet Connet project associated with the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP).
This project will enable OlyCAP to reach out with specially trained volunteers and connect with local vets. Volunteers will assess vet needs and provide information. Follow up contact will help the project find the most effective ways to connect and support established and returning vets.
We have provided a model program for supporting fragile seniors in their home for the past few years. The programs include Encore! Adult Day Cre which serves adults with disabilities and Arts & MInds a program for persons with dementia aimed at helping to slow the progress of this disease. Although funding has been provided by the local Area Agency on Aging in the past, the recent downturn in state budget has resulted in all this support being cut. At this time we have 3 goals for this program:
- maintain the capacity to support adults with disabilities and people with dementia
- grow the portion of the program that helps preserve function and social integration
- develop additional funding to assist in Encore! becoming self sustaining at an increased capacity.