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Connecting With Seniors - How a Columbus PH Pro Makes an Impact

September 3, 2013

Originally Published July 05, 2011

Jack Lockwood knows how important seniors are to a community. He is in the right place at the right time to make a difference in their lives.  Jack volunteers with the River Valley Regional Commission Area Agency on Aging (AAA).  Because of his commitment to advocate for seniors, he is the recipient of AAA's 2011 Distinguished Community Partner.

"When Jack gives of his time, he is helping AAA provide seniors opportunities to maintain their activity, independence, and dignity through a comprehensive, coordinated system of services and support," said Tiffany Ingram, Director. "Our partnership means the world to our seniors and community.  Jack is truly our man for all seasons." 

Jack began collaborating with AAA in 2003. Together they built an osteoporosis program that screened, educated and informed seniors in the 16 county region. Jack performed over 2,000 osteoporosis screenings in senior centers and during health fairs.  Jack's involvement helps the AAA to alert and educate the community about bone density and refer them to their physicians as needed. Follow-up screenings showed that good nutrition, calcium and Vitamin D supplements and a good medication plan can improve bone health. Jack assisted the AAA in evaluating screening results and re-screenings for the first disease outcome study. 

Jack has assisted the AAA in developing a health education library, consisting of props and visual aids to make programs lively and entertaining for our seniors. Jack and the AAA actively worked together on "Live Healthy Columbus" partnering with health fairs and community education programs, spreading the "Live Healthy Columbus" message of Be Positive, Be Smoke Free, Be Active, Get Checked, and Eat Healthy.

Annually, Jack joins the AAA Wellness Walk at Peachtree Mall and this event brings many community programs together.  AAA has made many connections to community leaders and educators and they are presently working on the emergency preparedness task force together. Jack has always been there partnering and leading the way.

When Jack is involved in an outreach program an invitation for the AAA is never far behind. The West Central Health District and the Area Agency on Aging have developed a mutually beneficial relationship and rapport due to Jack's involvement and keen understanding of the Columbus community and the needs for our seniors.

Jack works for the Columbus Department of Public Health in the West Central Health District and presently serves as a Program Consultant and Deputy Public Information Officer.

-Story by Pam Fair, RC/PIO for West Central Health District