The Town of Pelham

Council On Aging

OUR NEXT EVENT is planned. We are having an Music Presentation by the Pelham Elementary Chorus in the Library on December 19th 2017 at 10:25 AM followed by light refreshments as we did two years ago. Please plan to arrive at 10:15 AM.

There are currently three vacancies One regular member AND TWO associate member vacancies . Please consider joining the COA.

Good morning directors,


The fuel assistance program will be open for new applications next week.


Here are some web links to get the basic info about the program:



I want to highlight a few key points:


1.  The program has a fairly high income limit.  A family of 4 making $66,115 or less annually is eligible; a family of two is eligible up to $44,958.


2.  Most renters are eligible for fuel assistance, even if the heat is included in the rent.  In that circumstance, the program pays a portion of the rent.


3.  There are many working families that don't apply because they assume they are not income eligible.  


Please do what you can to spread the word in your community that fuel assistance is open for applications!  In addition to the links above, there is a very helpful "Cold Relief" brochure that explains more about the program and where to apply.  However, the state has yet to post the FY 18 version.  However, the FY 17 brochure is on line, and is accurate/up-to-date except for the income-eligible numbers.  FY 2017 brochure here:


Please, please spread the word!


Charles Harak

National Consumer Law Center

617 542-8010 (office)

781 307-6775 (cell)



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Thanks to all those that attended the COA and Lions Club Potluck Picnic. We hope that those that attended had a great lunch and learned valuable information.

If you are not able to attend our meetings please consider putting a suggestion in the COA suggestion box in the Library.

Eli Kwartler is the COA Outreach Worker If you are 65 years or older, please contact Eli with any questions you may have about services you may be eligible for many things including Medicare Shine questions. He can be reached at 413-253-2929 or

Pelham's veterans agent is Steven Connor in Northampton His phone number is 413 259 3028

Highland Valley Elder Services-Evidenced Based Healthy Aging

Since 2004, Highland Valley Elder Services has participated in the statewide Stanford Model to offer consumers and caregiver’s educational programs developed by Stanford University. Currently Highland Valley has trained master trainers, leaders, trained staff and volunteers who conduct workshops using a curriculum developed by Stanford University. The workshop series provides information and teaches skills on managing specific health issues. Are leaders offer workshops in Chronic Disease Self-Management, Chronic Pain, Diabetes, Cancer:Thriving and Surviving and A Matter of Balance. The goal of all programs is to enable participants to build self-confidence to assume an active role in maintaining their health and managing their medical condition.

Highland Valley participates with the Healthy Living Center for Excellence at Elder Services of Merrimack Valley and the Western Mass Consortium of Healthy Aging Programs.

The Healthy Living Center of Excellence model promotes the integration of evidenced-based self- management programs. The programs are held in diverse community settings within the health care delivery system, through collaboration with community-based organizations, health care providers and plans, government, foundations and for profit-partners.

Matter of Balance Program: Many older adults experience a fear of falling. People who develop this fear often limit their activities, which can result in physical weakness, making the risk of falling even greater. A Matter of Balance: Managing Concerns About Falls is a program designed to reduce the fear of falling and increase activity levels among older adults.

A Matter of Balance includes eight two-hour sessions for a small group led by a trained facilitator. This nationally recognized program was developed at the Roybal Center at Boston University. During the class, participants learn to: 1) view falls as controllable 2) set goals for increasing activity 3) make changes to reduce fall risk at home 4) exercise to increase strength and balance

Who should attend A Matter of Balance? The program was designed to benefit community-dwelling older adults who: 1) are concerned about falls 2) have sustained falls in the past 3) restrict activities because of concerns about falling 4) are interested in improving flexibility, balance and strength 5) are age 60 or older, ambulatory and able to problem solve.

                                                                HVES logo 

                        320 Riverside Drive, Suite B Florence, MA 01062-2700  Tel: 413-586-2000


The Council on Aging is still working on the Med Ride program. We will be looking for responsible drivers to be trained and CORI checked so we can actually help those needing rides to Medical appointments. Do you know anyone willing and able to help? Once the actual program is finalized there will be more information on the med ride program details here.



Recently a number of residents have received SCAM phone messages that say the IRS is opening a claim for money that you owe or similar wording. Please do not give any personal information to the caller especially not Social Security or bank account information or verify date of birth.


Your Council on Aging Chairperson For the time being is Kathy Martell and can be reached at 413-253-0512 for information or suggestions.

Your Outreach Person is Eli Kwartler He can be reached at 413-253-2929 or


There will be more special events planned including a Pot Luck Picnic event being planned for the Spring. Check this website for upcoming events. We look forward to seeing you all!

Congregate Meal are no longer being held. You are welcome to attend Amherst or Belchertown Luncheons. Just call the Senior Center in the town you wish to attend and find out the deadline for requesting a luncheon meal.





The Council on Aging Monthly meetings are generally held monthly on Wednesdays at the Ramsdell Room in the Library Complex 2 South Valley Road. Check the Townof notice board meeting times and dates. They are open meetings. If you have any ideas for COA events that you would like to have the COA involved with or sponsor we would like to hear from you.