Area Agency on Aging changes name, location

The Area Agency on Aging for Lincolnland has a new name and a new location. Now known as AgeLinc, the nonprofit organization recently moved into a building that more than doubled its square footage.

Despite the operational challenges caused by the COVID-19 crisis, executive director Carolyn Austin said the organization was able to proceed with renovations and a planned move to 2731 S. MacArthur Blvd. and will occupy the entire first level. The upstairs space will be leased to Visiting Angels and ICARE, which both receive funding from AgeLinc.

“ICARE (was) housed in our (former) building with us, but now they’ll be able to have their own space,” Austin said of the long-term care ombudsman program. Visiting Angels, which offers in-home care for seniors, receives grant funding from AgeLinc for respite services.

Austin said the larger space will allow the organization to add additional programming. While AgeLinc will still subcontract with others who provide services, it will also be able to offer more services of its own.

“We plan to launch a community initiative offering sessions for people to help them age in place, prepare for retirement and more,” explained Austin. “We’ll be able to have extra programming we haven’t done in the past.”

Austin said that while the regional ombudsmen are working from home, since they’re not allowed to go into nursing homes and other care facilities right now, her staff is still operating out of the office. “We’re not open to the public, only doing phone appointments right now until the quarantine is lifted. But we have reporting with the state and there’s a lot for us to do, even without letting people come into the building.”

The grand opening for the new location is still scheduled for June 5, although subject to change. The organization’s former location at 3100 Montvale Dr. in Springfield, which is just over 5,000 square feet, is now listed for sale for $485,000.

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