Homage to our CCH Residents
At times, I must attend city council meetings which address the development of a new affordable housing community. During those meetings, I often run across people who are deeply concerned about the caliber of folks who may move into their neighborhood. It’s disheartening, in those moments, to see a persistent misperception among established local folks who wish to keep their local community free of undesirable activities and “those people”. While they sit in the meeting with a negative perception and bias about seniors of limited income, I sit there thinking about my own five decades of direct involvement with those same seniors. We are seeing the same beautiful faces, but with two very different sets of lenses.
Here is my perception and lifetime experience in working with seniors – especially those who are trying to be responsible community members but with very limited means. I will say clearly that a typical CCH resident is honest, conscientious, responsible and committed to their neighbors, community and family. They may have had a career as a teacher, office worker or city employee. They may have had substantial savings, but an unexpected crisis such as a spouse with a terrible illness resulting in enormous health care expenses caused them to lose their life savings. Due to circumstances beyond their control, they now find themselves struggling to pay basic bills. However, after 70 or 80 years of hard and honest work, they have not forgotten the core social principals of integrity and responsibility.
My input at a city council meeting? If you want to improve your city and neighborhood vote for CCH to build 100 units of housing which is affordable to seniors. Such a vote will lift up your neighborhood and provide you with neighbors who are role models for us all.