County receives federal grant for aging services

Federal grant funding of more than $1.6 million and a new staff position for the Johnson County Aging and Human Services Department were approved April by the Johnson County Board of County Commissioners by unanimous vote.

The funds are provided to the department through the Johnson County Area Agency on Aging from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) of 2021 by the Kansas Department of Aging and Disability Services. The ARPA provided federal funding to states, including grants through the Older Americans Act to help communities provide services for aging adults.

A BOCC’s priority is to strengthen and finance the appropriate level of service to meet the needs of the county’s vulnerable populations and create conditions that promote community health.

“The Department of Aging and Human Services and the Area Agency on Aging are cornerstones of the county’s service system. They provide key services, information and guidance to meet fundamental needs for older adults and increased demands from an older population that continues to grow,” said Chairman Ed Eilert. “This grant funding and new hire have a very important purpose: helping our seniors.”

The federal grant totals $1,626,014 in ARPA funds for use through Sept. 20, 2024. Funding has been earmarked for:

  • home delivered meals, $565,439
  • supportive services, $453,827
  • congregate meals, $243,427
  • family caregiver support, $179,789
  • disease prevention/health promotion, $48,038

The Department of Aging and Human Services also will use grant funds to hire a full-time information and assistance specialist to serve clients to gain access to the department’s In-Home and Nutrition Services along with other available assistance and programs. The new position is part of the Aging and
Disability Resource Center that provides a wide range of services, counseling and information for aging adults and their families or caregivers.

“We are thrilled to share the good news about additional assistance for older adults in Johnson County. By approving this request, the BOCC is once again showing commitment to aging services in the county. These funds aid in the goal of helping older adults remain in their communities and homes. ARPA funds will be dedicated to front line services and will benefit many Area Agency on Aging clients.,” said Megan Laha, interim director when the funding was approved.

The new ARPA funding is available to Area Agency on Aging clients. To access services and see if one qualifies for services, Johnson County residents can complete an online intake form by visiting… or call 913-715-8861 to speak with one of the Area Agency on Aging information and
referral specialists.