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"GATEKEEPER" PROGRAM

WHAT Customer contact employees like meter readers, utility workers postal carriers and librarians are trained to recognize signs indicating that an older person may need help.
WHYTo assist older people who may have little contact with others and may need help. Many problems that elderly experience can go unnoticed and unattended.
WHEREIllinois Department on Aging and Area Agency on Aging
Chicago, IL, USA.


Program Description

Businesses implement the program by training their employees in about an hour.

The focus is on identifying danger signs and providing a contact phone number to call for help. Upon noticing an elder who needs assistance, volunteer employees make a phone call to the senior information and assistance office who in turn contact the elderly person. The appropriate health or social service organization is contacted and care is delivered.

Examples of care include medical care, food preparation or delivery, help with household chores, transportation, or other services.

As a result, seniors are able to maintain their independence at home and at the same time employees receive job satisfaction and are involved in the community.

Other examples of positions that are able to become trained gatekeepers are: supermarket clerks, bank tellers, pharmacists, customer service representatives, waitresses/waiters, paper deliverers and more.

Utilities such as the Illinois State Library, the Metropolitan Chicago Healthcare Council and many local businesses, have made approximately 5,800 referrals to the Aging Network.


Find out more about the “Gatekeeper" Program.



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