This month, the City of Fremont Human Services Department was presented with the Grantmakers In Aging (GIA) Diversity Award at the 2018 GIA Annual Conference in Memphis, Tennessee for the Community Ambassador Program for Seniors (CAPS). A unique civic partnership between the Human Services Department and 10 local cultural, faith, and neighborhood organizations, CAPS originated from a Robert Wood Johnson “Fresh Ideas” grant in 2007.
The CAPS mission is to increase service access and quality of service for all seniors, regardless of language, culture, faith, economic status, and other factors that can act as barriers. Trained volunteer ambassadors build the Fremont community’s capacity to service seniors in their own language, within their own cultural norms, and at places where seniors live, worship, and socialize.
In the past year, 60 active ambassadors have served over 750 seniors and collectively contributed over 2,500 volunteer hours. Among those served, seniors needed the most support with health benefits, health-related concerns, social/emotional support, housing, and social security benefits.
The CAPS curriculum has been purchased by three other cities that wish to replicate the model. Fremont provides technical support to cities and agencies across the country interested in learning more about the program.
Learn more about the nationally recognized CAPS initiative.