MORRIS COUNTY, New Jersey, (Sept 10th 2019) – Freeholder and candidate for Surrogate Heather Darling calls for an expansion of events for senior citizens after a month’s long personal investigation into the efficacy and value of the social programs designed to help seniors.
Freeholder Darling spent one half of the summer attending senior nutrition picnics throughout the county, talking to older residents participating in senior activity programs, as well as the tireless workers running these events, to get first-hand feedback from the people about the value of these events. Across Morris County social programs like bingo nights, movie nights, and picnics in the summer provide senior citizens an opportunity to socialize with friends, get out of the house, and enjoy their retirement, but they also help seniors in unexpected ways.
“After spending much of the summer attending multiple senior events I can say with confidence that these programs are absolutely invaluable”, Freeholder Darling said, “not only because our seniors love the events; but because they save lives. I was at a Nutrition Picnic in Morristown and a program director told me that within the prior weeks a regular at social events did not show up. The person became worried and sent someone to check up on her. They found her on the floor covered in sweat, but the Director had already called 911 so they were there within moments and saved her life”.
“Undoubtedly, many more lives have been saved by these silent heroes working within the senior community in similar ways.” Darling continued, “As Surrogate, I plan to make preventing elder fraud and abuse a primary focus of my office, but we need to support our older citizens in all aspects of their lives. Including education about how to prevent fraud in these events and expanding programs within the senior community so that our older residents remain more active, fulfilled, and have a strong support network of friends and staff is a very basic way in which we can help ensure their safety and well-being.”
Heather Darling is the Deputy Director of the Freeholder Board of Morris County, alternate liaison from the Freeholder Board to Human Services, and a candidate for County Surrogate. For over 15 years, she has owned and operated her own Estates and Trusts law practice which is currently located in Morris Plains, has served as a public defender for Roxbury Township and also currently serves as a public defender pool attorney for the state of New Jersey. She has also served on the Roxbury Zoning Board, as the Vice-Chair for Economic Development, and multiple other boards, committees and organizations on behalf of the community.