The Aging Report
Advocating Together While Apart
This year' AgeGuide’s Advocacy Collaboratives were heavy on conversation and light on bacon. Although we didn’t get to linger over coffee and pastries, the speakers were fiery, the discussions rich and the relationships strong. In this strange year where services for older adults all pivoted to virtual, AgeGuide, in partnership with AARP, gathered our eight-county region virtually for three locally-focused events.
Nearly 250 older adults, aging network professionals and elected officials participated in these events. Marla Fronczak, Chief Executive Officer, addressed the impact that the pandemic has had on older adults and their caregivers and the ways in which the network has adapted to address it. Each event also included a presentation from a public health official to discuss vaccine rollout and distribution. Courtney Hedderman, who heads up vaccine outreach for AARP Illinois, shared how they are working to reach vulnerable older adult populations.

The message was overall one of hope. With three COVID-19 vaccines on the market, availability is likely to increase and older adults will soon be able to resume activities and gather safely. In the meantime, the aging network has created innovative resources and responses that will likely remain best-practices long after the pandemic subsides.

AgeGuide is committed to supporting public policies that strengthen caregiver support; fund essential services to address food insecurity, long-term care facilities, and social isolation; and prioritize older adults in the COVID-19 vaccination roll out, education and outreach. If you would like to learn more or get involved in our advocacy efforts, please visit
Personalize Your Plate
Developing a healthful eating pattern is not a one-size-fits all endeavor. The key is tailoring your favorite foods to meet your individual nutrient needs.

In March, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics focuses attention on healthful eating through National Nutrition Month®. This year’s theme, Personalize Your Plate, promotes creating nutritious meals to meet individuals’ cultural and personal food preferences.
Tips to reimagine traditional dishes:
  • Cook with dried spices and herbs instead of salt to add flavor to your dishes
  • Try different grains such as wild rice, whole-grain farro and whole-grain barley to reap the benefits of whole grains
  • Go meatless: Serve up beans or lentils for a heart healthful plant-based protein
  • Cook with vegetable oils instead of solid fats such as butter when cooking to limit saturated fat
  • Eat 100-percent whole-wheat bread instead of white bread for more dietary fiber
  • To decrease extra calories from fat, bake, grill, roast or steam your food instead of frying
  • Sprinkle chia or ground flax seeds on cereal, salad or toast to increase consumption of omega-3 fatty acids
  • For flavor, add lime, grapefruit or pineapple slices to glasses of water
  • Cook grains in a low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock for flavor
  • To add variety, enjoy vegetables in different forms — raw, steamed, roasted, grilled or sautéed 

The Academy recommends filling half your plate with fruits and vegetables and the remaining quarters of your plate with whole grains and protein foods, such as lean meat, skinless poultry, seafood or beans. With each meal, eat calcium- rich foods and drinks such as fat-free or low-fat milk, yogurt, cheese or a calcium-fortified soy beverage.

Source: The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
Fiscal Year 2022-2024 Funding Opportunity
AgeGuide Northeastern Illinois is soliciting Letters of Interest from non-profit and local government organizations qualified to receive Federal/State of Illinois financial assistance grants to provide services for older adults (age 60+) as authorized under the Older Americans Act of 1965 (Public Law 89-73) in our 8-county Planning and Service Area consisting of DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kankakee, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will counties.
The funding period is October 1, 2021 – September 30, 2022. Organizations who are awarded grants will be given the opportunity to renew their applications for FY2023 and FY2024.

Fundable services include:
  • Aging and Disability Resource Network services (Information and Assistance, Outreach, and Options Counseling)
  • Caregiver Resource Center services (Assistance, Respite, and Gap-Filling)
  • Caregiver Counseling Center services (Individual Counseling, Support Groups, and Training and Education)
  • Community Connection Collaborative services (Education, Recreation, and Health Screening)
  • Congregate (Community Dining) Meals
  • Evidence-Based Health Promotion
  • Home Delivered Meals
  • In Home Services (Friendly Visiting or Telephone Reassurance)
  • Legal Services
  • Older Adult Counseling
  • Transportation
The service provider must adhere to AgeGuide’s General Service Standards in addition to service-specific standards. For further information about grant requirements and application process, visit our webpage:
Successful applicants must comply with all applicable pre-qualification requirements including, but not limited to, current DUNS and SAM numbers, acceptable fiscal management/fiscal stability (including the ability to meet Federal matching requirements), good standing with the Secretary of State and not on any Debarred/Suspended/Stop Payment/Excluded Parties listings.
Letters of Interest should be sent to no later than March 23, 2021.
AgeGuide Advocacy Alert & Update
AgeGuide needs your help! Please support Illinois Caregivers by advocating for House Bill 293 & Senate Bill 1766

The Illinois Family Caregiver Act, which was passed in 2004, established a caregiver support program to assist unpaid caregivers through training and education to develop essential caregiving skills and other interventions to provide relief and reduce stress. However, the Act was never funded.
These bills offer an opportunity to support unpaid Illinois family caregivers through appropriating $6,000,000 from the General Revenue Fund to the Department on Aging for services provided under the Family Caregiver Act.
Funding the Illinois Family Caregiver Act is an investment in the strengths of our family caregivers:
  • Provides evidence based assessments that tailor interventions to caregivers’ unique needs 
  • Equips the Aging Network with financial resources to support family caregivers by enhancing:
  • Support services and respite care that provide temporary relief to caregivers
  • Transportation infrastructure
  • Adult Day Programs
  • Saves Medicaid dollars by delaying costly nursing home placement
Please ask your legislators to support both bills funding the Illinois Family Caregiver Act of 2004.

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AgeGuide Northeastern Illinois was established in 1974. Services funded or coordinated by AgeGuide meet the diverse needs of the most rapidly growing population in Illinois. Over 700,000 seniors age 60 and over live in the agency's eight-county service area:

DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kankakee, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will Counties

AgeGuide | (630) 293-5990 | |
1910 S. Highland Ave, Suite 100
Lombard, IL 60148

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