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Personal health literacy is your ability to find, understand, and use health information to make the best possible decisions for yourself

It’s been a while but Horace Mann students are back at RSS working with our members to make the terrace garden fabulous!

Here is the most recent news from RSS,

Keeping tabs on how much sugar you’re swallowing is an important part of a heart-healthy lifestyle, especially if you’ve been diagnosed with diabetes or prediabetes. The empty calories from added sugars in desserts, some drinks, and candy can lead to weight gain and spikes in blood glucose levels.

The good news is that cutting down on sugar may be easier than you think.

What is heart disease? The words “heart disease” refer to several types of heart conditions. In the United States, the most common type of heart disease is coronary artery disease (CAD) or damage to the arteries that supply your heart with blood and oxygen and keep the heart working. You can greatly reduce your risk for heart disease through lifestyle changes and, in some cases, medicine. Focus on other factors beyond cholesterol level.

Horace Mann School and RSS have had a close relationship for years. Students involved in the Service Learning after-school program came weekly to do activities with our members including building garden beds for the terrace and doing artwork together. When COVID hit we were no longer able to meet in person but that didn't stop the desire to continue intergenerational programming and so we adapted and continued to meet online to have discussions and still create beautiful artwork to share.

Every Wednesday at 10 AM a dozen or so RSS members meet to read plays, sing together, and to socialize. I sat in on the RSS Drama Club, as an observer and an occasional participant, in order to understand the nuts and bolts of acting in a small theater ensemble. I was interested in the individual performers, and their motivations for participating in this particular group.The first time I came to observe, the club was preparing for an upcoming Holiday Show. They had only a few sessions to practice Christmas Carols and several traditional readings. They ran through everything at least once and I could not figure out how it would all come together in time for the performance. As I watched them from the back of the room, my impression was that they were having too good a time rehearsing for the show. Shouldn’t they be as anxious as I am about it turning out? Was I hearing way too much laughter here? How come they joke around so much? I expected a drama club to be so much more serious.

For over 20 years, the RSS/Reverend Tieck Adult Day Program has been devoted to those 60+ that are challenged by memory loss. Here, the Director of our Adult Day Program for Memory Loss talks about what dementia is, how family members can help those with dementia, and the stresses for caregivers.

RSS member Ernece Kelly talks about the life and work of Martin Luther King Jr., with whom she worked for in Chicago, during a presentation at RSS-Riverdale Senior Services last week about the civil rights icon’s legacy.

To see the article on the Riverdale Press website go to,69935?

All it took was a tagline to pique Julie Dalton’s attention in RSS-Riverdale Senior Services.

As someone with a background working in aging services, Dalton was casually subscribed to the emails of RSS-Riverdale Senior Services and saw the Netherland Avenue facility’s tagline: “The Center for Ageless Living.”

There was something in that message that pushed Dalton toward the idea that she wanted to be part of that community.

“I thought that was so perfectly a match for me,” she said.

To the prize-winning author of “Naked at Our Age” and “Sex After Grief”, no question about senior sex is off-limits. She is known as as a fierce advocate for "ageless sexuality" and is about as open as it gets when it comes to talking about sex. Joan is zealous about spreading the word that adults can be passionate and desirable at any age. She is frank, funny, knowledgeable and articulate. This fit and sassy septuagenarian is a role-model extraordinaire.

Artist Ruth Hurd on exhibit at RSS through July 2019. Her work is all about loss and change. Painting is her way of remembering and paying homage to what is ephemeral, something she may never see again. Through her painting, she creates stability in her life, capturing and restoring what might otherwise be lost. Learn about Ruth in her own words

Posted 4/21/2019 - The Riverdale Press

RSS seniors learn value of being ‘Savvy Solos’

Mary Fernandez had no idea what her blood type was, but something pushed her to call and find out.

That push came in the form of the Savvy Solos Club, a group for senior citizens who live alone and sometimes don’t have any family or friends nearby. The club provides them with tools to use in the event of an emergency while also encouraging them to socialize with others, meeting every other Wednesday at RSS-Riverdale Senior Services, 2600 Netherland Ave.

It was at those 1 p.m., meetings Fernandez learned all about things like how to create a living will and how to complete a power of attorney document allowing someone else to act on her behalf in case she becomes unable to make decisions.

It also got her thinking about what emergency workers or doctors might ask her if she needed medical attention, like her blood type. Savvy Solos inspired her to be prepared for anything.

“I knew I had to do these things,” Fernandez said. “But by going there and talking with other people, it gave me that impetus to do it.”

Since last spring RSS has taken on the issue of diverting waste from landfill and recycling. A big focus of this is our composting project. To date, we have composted over 1,000 pounds of food waste!Food waste is a major issue in the United States. According to the USDA “In the United States, food waste is estimated at between 30-40 percent of the food supply.

In honor of our 45th year we’ll be highlighting some area of RSS. We’ll talk about its history, people and place in the neighborhood. To kick things off, here are 5 facts you may not know.

1. In 1964 Sadie Levine, Eleanor Katzman and Julia Blumenthal launched a once a week program at Riverdale Neighborhood House for older adults in Riverdale.

New York State is offering two hour training sessions for residents to have the tools and resources to prepare for any type of disaster, respond accordingly and recover as quickly as possible to pre-disaster conditions.

We LOVE this story because it shows the power of goodness and how social media can be powrful in spreading the word. The RSS knitting group creates beautiful handmade knitted goods that they donate to causes and also to raise funds for the Center.

More than 4,300 older New Yorkers across the five boroughs participated in Ready New York emergency preparedness training this year

December 7, 2018 – The New York City Emergency Management Department and the Department for the Aging (DFTA) presented the sixth annual Ready New York Senior Center of the Year Award to Julie Dalton, executive director for RSS – Riverdale Senior Services, for her ongoing commitment to preparing seniors for emergencies. The center provides daily services and programs to about 300 older adults, including exercise, art, gardening classes, on-site health counseling and benefit review services, and support groups. The center also provides a hands-on adult day program for people with early memory loss, and hosts a knitting club, which donates caps, mittens, and other clothing items to the maternal unit on Rikers Island.    

Plants as therapy? Gardening as a way to work out emotional and physical problems? Horticultural therapy is more than just going to the garden and planting flowers. Horticultural therapy is the connection between people and plants. It is akin to the reasons art and music therapy are employed to aid people. Learn more here about Barbara Denson, our horticultural therapist.

Ming Chin celebrated his 100th birthday with his friends at the Riverdale Senior Services a couple weeks ago. But the man who refused to retire almost had that life cut short 17 years ago.

Chin was 83 when two airliners crashed into the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, and was just about to step into one of the tower buildings for work when he saw the first plane.

“Class Is In Session. Please Knock,” was the message on the back of a gray door at Riverdale Senior Services. Inside, scripts of plays were
sprawled across a table. The theatrical voices of six older women ebbed and flowed across the room. The women make up the local Arts Studio Drama Club that meets weeklyto do read-throughs of favorite plays.

On September 24th through 28th, RSS will be a host site for Active Aging Week. Besides the regular roster of RSS classes, trips and group activities, each day will focus on a theme related to wellness. This is all part of the 16th consecutive Active Aging Week®, an annual event in the last week of September in which hundreds of thousands of adults aged 50 and older participate in a multitude of activities in an atmosphere of fun, friendship, adventure, and positive perceptions of aging.

Irving Ladimer, a beloved member of RSS died on July 3rd. Read about his amazing life in this article from the Riverdale Press by clicking the link above.

The Board of Directors of RSS is pleased to announce the appointment of Julie Dalton as Executive Director. RSS is a nonprofit focused on programs and services to help older adults in the Bronx. “We are exceptionally pleased that Julie Dalton has taken on this leadership role,” said Board President, Rhea Dornbush, Ph.D. She is a seasoned professional dedicated to services for older adults She is a strong communicator, an effective manager, experienced in New York City and New York State contracting, and a thought leader in supporting older adults to remain in their community. As RSS enters its 45th year of service we know that Julie will be an effective voice for RSS in the community. “For the next twenty years, an average of 10,000 people each day will reach 65. People are now often retired for thirty years or more, and RSS, with its focus on every aspect of wellness, offers so many options for staying healthy, developing and exploring new interests, friendships and ways to share skills,” says Dalton. “I am excited to work with an exceptional team to help the organization meet these challenges. I am committed to empowering our members and their families to live their best possible lives. The Center for Ageless Living is the place to be! “

Riverdale Senior Services announced it is now doing business as RSS. Long known to its members as RSS, Riverdale Senior Services now adopts this "nickname" as its official name. Riverdale Senior Services will continue to be used as a descriptor going forward. RSS is also introducing a tagline - The Center for Ageless Living - as well as a new website and website address (url) -

As most of you know Julia Schwartz-Leeper has left RSS to take on an exciting new role as Foundation Director for Visiting Nurse Services of Westchester. Julia made enormous contributions to RSS for which we are extremely grateful. The Board of Directors is actively recruiting for a new Executive Director. While that search is going on RSS has hired an Interim Executive Director. Today we'd like to introduce you to Sandra Bowie.

As most of you may already be aware, I am transitioning out of RSS at the end of this month. Over the past 12 years I have had the honor to work with so many incredible staff, board members, volunteers, participants, supporters, colleagues and community partners. With your support, together we have accomplished a great deal. RSS has grown and evolved into a true community where people come together to share talents, experiences and friendships.