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Hampton, NH Organization Gets Grant to Help Reduce Health Risks to Elderly

Release Date: 03/08/2005
Contact Information:

Contact: Sheryl Rosner, EPA Office of Public Affairs, (617) 918-1865

For Immediate Release: March 8, 2005; Release # sr050302

A Hampton, NH organization has received $25,000 from the US Environmental Protection Agency for a program to help citizens better understand how to reduce the environmental health hazards associated with older people.

LifeWise Community Projects in Hampton, NH, was given an Aging Initiative Grant for its "Future Water Guardians of New Hampshire" project. This money will let LifeWise recruit and train older adults to increase the number of environmental education teams and to broaden the coverage of elementary and middle schools in New Hampshire.

The project aims to train 21 older adults, create three new educational teams to serve other counties, and hold 80 presentations in middle schools reaching 1,380 students on pollution prevention and source water protections.

The New Hampshire organization was one of 19 recipients in the country and two in New England that received a total of $492,187. Award recipients across the country include state and local health and environmental offices, government agencies, universities and community colleges, a community foundation and non-profit organizations. Each recipient received between $18,900 and $25,000 over a one-year period.

"Programs like this one in New Hampshire allow citizens to play a part in their own environment and well-being," said Robert Varney, regional administrator for EPA's New England office. "This grant should allow the organization to continue their good work in training older residents as environmental leaders."

"This is a great opportunity for older adults, as this EPA support allows us to create and expand into a statewide, intergenerational movement of environmental education with youth," said Bruce Montville, president and CEO of LifeWise. "The Older adults that join with us will be improving their own health through their participation and gain renewed self-value and community respect."

The other New England grant went to Family Services Inc. in Lawrence, Mass., which received the money for its Segunda Edad Saludable program, which will recruit and train older adults from the city to be "community leaders" to help reduce environmental health hazards to older individuals. Trained leaders in Lawrence will host neighborhood-based meetings and attend community-wide events where older adults can learn about environmental hazards that may hurt their health and meaningful steps they can take to reduce their exposure.

These grants, given this year for the first time, are part of EPA's larger effort to protect the health of older adults who may be more susceptible to environmental hazards, through its Aging Initiative. This initiative encourages citizens to recognize and reduce environmental hazards in their communities.

A complete list of the award winners and more information on the initiative is available at (EPA HQ)

Related Information:
Aging Initiative: Winners of the Grant Competition (EPA HQ)