Social Services

Senior Monongalians has a Social Services Coordinator and SHIP Counselor assist seniors and their families.  Our Social Service staff works with clients to understand & enroll in Medicare Part D, finding answers to Social Security questions, directing clients to utility assistance programs, senior
housing options, and much more.

Important & Useful Links:

How the Silver Alert Program Works

posted Feb 6, 2014, 7:35 AM by Senior Monongalians   [ updated Apr 8, 2014, 11:21 AM ]

Silver Alert is a program you hope you never need, but if you do, here’s what it is and how it works.  The Silver Alert Program allows law enforcement to issue alerts for adults with Alzheimer’s and other cognitive disorders.  Silver Alert is similar to what most states

already have for children called Amber Alert. It is a system that uses the broadcast media to notify the general public and law enforcement when an adult with cognitive impairment (memory, thinking and reasoning problems) is missing.  The Alert will include a description of the person, anything you know about the circumstances of the person’s disappearance, and other information that the State Police may think is important and appropriate.  If a loved one with cognitive impairment wanders and becomes lost, call the State Police or local law enforcement to submit a missing person's report and ask them to activate Silver Alert.  (If the missing person’s report is filed with local law enforcement, ask them to forward the information to the State Police.  Silver Alert must be activated by the State Police.)

In addition to the broadcast media, the State Police will also notify the Department of Transportation, Division of Highways and West Virginia Turnpike Commission.  If possible, through the use of their electronic signs, they can let motorists know that a Silver Alert is in progress.  They can provide information relating to the missing person and let motorists know how they may report any information they have to the State Police or other appropriate law enforcement agency.

For more information about Silver Alert or other tracking systems that help locate individuals with cognitive impairment, contact the Bureau of Senior Services, 1-877-987-3646.

Wandering Behavior – Preparing For & Preventing It

posted Jul 10, 2013, 10:33 AM by Senior Monongalians   [ updated Apr 8, 2014, 11:05 AM ]

Alzheimer's disease causes millions of Americans to lose their ability to recognize familiar places and faces. Six in ten people with Alzheimer's disease will wander. They may become disoriented and lost, even in their own neighborhoods. Although common, wandering behavior can be dangerous; if not found within 24 hours, up to half of those who wander risk serious injury or death.


Wandering is among the biggest challenges caregivers face.  Following are tips from the Alzheimer’s Association to help you prepare for or prevent wandering behavior in loved ones with Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia:


Who's at risk to wander?  Anyone who:

          Returns from a regular walk or drive later than usual.

          Tries to fulfill former obligations, such as going to work.

          Tries to “go home” even when at home.

          Is restless, paces or makes repetitive movements.

          Has difficulty locating familiar places like the bathroom, bedroom or dining room.

          Checks the whereabouts of familiar people.

          Acts as if doing a hobby or chore, but nothing gets done (e.g. moves around pots and dirt without planting anything).

          Feels lost in a new or changed environment.


Consider behavior

          Be aware of who is at risk for wandering.

          Identify the most likely times of day that wandering may occur; plan activities at that time.

          Provide opportunities for activities and exercise.

          When night wandering is a problem, make sure the person has restricted fluids two hours before bedtime and has gone to the bathroom just before bed. Limit daytime naps, if possible.

          Monitor reaction to medications. Consult a physician, if necessary.

          Use communication focused on validating feelings (not correcting) when the individual says that he or she wants to leave to go home or to work.

If wandering is in progress, use distraction to re-direct the individual's focus.

1-2 of 2