Local Office on Aging reflects on past year, future needs

Despite pandemic, LOA served thousands of seniors

ROANOKE, Va. – The Roanoke Valley’s Local Office on Aging is looking back on the past year and looking forward to the next decade.

The organization held its annual meeting virtually on Thursday to reflect on what they’ve been through during the pandemic and the needs still ahead.

The office covers the Roanoke Valley, Alleghany Highlands, Botetourt County and Craig County.

Despite COVID-19, they were able to deliver more than 88,000 meals for Meals on Wheels, coordinate medical care and provide transportation.

Countless volunteers also pitched in more than 15,000 hours.

During the meeting, the head of Virginia’s Department of Social Services, S. Duke Storen, said their work wouldn’t have been possible without those volunteers.

“I want you to take away a heartfelt appreciation for the work that you do. And it’s not just work. It’s heroic work,” said Storen, the department’s commissioner.

But officials said there is still work to do.

With an aging population, they said there needs to be a greater focus on nutrition and health, transportation and helping seniors stay physically and financially independent.

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