CLEVELAND — The Western Reserve Area Agency on Aging announced Tuesday that it is investing $3.4 million in grant money to help its aging residents in northeast Ohio. 

What You Need To Know

  • Western Reserve Area Agency on Aging will invest $3.4 million to help aging seniors

  • The money will go toward four programs

  • The focus is on home accommodations, food and transportation 

June Taylor, the Chief Performance and Strategy Manager for WRAAA, explained the first two programs will focus on house modifications for seniors.

“We’re really focused on the grab bars, we’re focused on disability accommodating showers and there will be rails and opportunities for all these things to be installed in our homes of our citizens throughout the region,” she said.

Taylor explained the next program will focus on bringing food and other essential items to seniors' homes with a program called the Great Grocery Giveaway. 

“What we did was put together two components, nonperishable foods as well as hygiene products," she said.

Finally, the last program is based upon helping people get to where they need to go, like the grocery store and doctors' appointments.

“One will be ADA-equipped, one will be a transport van, one will be a cargo van and then the other one will be in partnership, also with Care Alliance, so that our citizens can make their medical appointments. Not just for them, but for their loved ones,” she said.

Several dignitaries also attended the announcement, including U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, Cuyahoga County Executive Chris Ronayne and U.S. Rep. Shontel Brown (R-OH 11).

“This program will make it more comfortable for people like my parents and grandparents to live in their homes more comfortable,” said Brown. 

The WRAAA hopes these programs improve the lives of the elderly in Northeast Ohio and allow them to thrive in their own homes.

The Center for Community Solutions, a nonprofit think tank, estimates there are about 400,000 older adults living in Cuyahoga and Lorain counties, representing more than 24% of the total population.