Woman's Club presents “two-fer” program

Strausstown Woman's Club Program Committee member Karen Miller and Patricia Cortez from the Area Agency on Aging at the April meeting.

The Woman’s Club of Strausstown met recently for their last regular meeting of the club year. Program committee member, Karen Miller, presented what she called a “two-fer” program. The group heard first from local girl and Penn State student, Jaylene Lesher, who presented her first-place award-winning speech on the importance of rural America in today’s society. Ms. Lesher, of Way-Har Farms, Bernville, is active in a number of agriculture youth programs and will be traveling to Indianapolis this summer to compete in the public speaking arena. She was most recently named the 2013 Jersey Queen for her work with Jersey cows.

The second part of the two-part program was titled “Preparing for the Next Stage of Life,” and featured Patricia Cortez from the Area Agency on Aging. Ms. Cortez spoke about the fact that people are living longer than ever before, citing the statistic that over 150 people in Berks County alone are 100-years old or older.

As folks age, many believe that moving to a nursing facility is a person’s only alternative; however, according to Ms. Cortez, the Area Agency on Aging works diligently to help people stay in their own homes safely as long as possible. She stressed that it is important to be active in investigating levels of care before assistance is needed, rather than being reactive once a life-changing event has occurred. She went on to say that much information and many services are available through her office to help people plan for the future.

Ms. Cortez touched on items such as power of attorney papers and explained that her office can provide citizens with contacts to aid in preparing such documents. An Area Agency on Aging representative is available at the Strausstown Community Campus on the second Wednesday of each month to meet with local residents and answer questions. In addition, Ms. Cortez indicated that much information is available on the agency website or by phoning her office between 8 and 5 each day.

Program chair, Sandra Behm, announced that, instead of its regular May meeting, the Woman’s Club of Strausstown will hold a garden tour on Saturday, May 11, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., which will feature five Strausstown-area gardens of various types. The tour may be taken in any order, with brochures describing the gardens and directions to them available at each home on the tour. Members and their guests are invited to immerse themselves in the beauties of Strausstown gardens, rain or shine.

Submitted by Peggy Behm, member of the Woman’s Club of Strausstown.