Osceola County COA serves record number of clients in 2022

New senior center in Hersey now open

The new COA senior center in Osceola County is now open in Hersey, in the former elementary school building. In 2022, the COA served a record number of clients according to the annual report.

The new COA senior center in Osceola County is now open in Hersey, in the former elementary school building. In 2022, the COA served a record number of clients according to the annual report.

Pioneer file photo

OSCEOLA COUNTY — The Osceola County board of commissioners were presented with the annual update from the Commission on Aging during its meeting earlier this month.

COA director Justin Halladay told the board they have seen an increase in the number of services they provided in 2022.

“The congregate sites have had high participation and our meals on wheels program has reached out to even more people than before,” Halladay said. “Homemaking, personal care, respite and transportation clients received these special services at high levels, as well. The need is there, and the COA is meeting it head on.”

The biggest event of this year, he said, was the long-awaited opening of the new senior center in Hersey. The COA purchased the former Hersey Elementary School in 2021 and began working on necessary renovations to make it a senior center.

A community grand opening celebration is planned for the spring, once they get everything organized, Halladay said.

“I want to thank the board for everything they have done this past year – it has been a long year getting us in our new building,” Halladay said. “There have been a lot of obstacles to overcome, but you were there to help us along the way, and we thank you for that.

“We moved in September, consolidating our main offices and having our senior center at this location,” he continued. “With this new location our numbers are higher than before of people participating, coming in to eat and participating in our activities. The support from the community to help us in our mission is overwhelming and continues to be so."


Total revenue and expenses for the COA in 2022 was $1,431,384. Revenues include:

  • COA millage - $804,214
  • Fundraisers and donations - $123,000
  • Program income - $15,500
  • Federal funding - $157,000
  • State funding - $204,500.

The total number of meals provided was just under 50,000, according to the report.

“The meal sites had great attendance this year culminating with the opening of our senior center in Hersey,” Halladay said. “Clients were excited to have a meal and spend time with each other. Our home-delivered meals kept going strong all year, as well, reaching more clients than ever.”

Total number of meals served was 49,140, including:

  • Home delivered hot meals – 23,019
  • Home delivered frozen meals – 13,367
  • Congregate hot meals – 7,927
  • Congregate frozen meals – 16
  • Med waiver hot meals – 2,444
  • Med waiver frozen meals – 1,997.

Home Health Aides provided service to 22 clients, assisting with daily activities that require hands-on care, including bathing and grooming, exercise, monitoring vital signs and medications, dressing changes and reporting any changes in conditions.

Homemaking services were provided to 172 clients, including household tasks to help clients remain safely in their homes, such as laundry, housekeeping and meal preparation.

Certified home health aides provided 1,776 hours of respite care to 24 clients, allowing primary caregivers time away from physically or mentally disabled persons requiring 24-hour supervision.

COA transportation services provide 186 hours and 2,689 miles or transportation to 11 clients for med waiver, care management, DHS and Veterans’ services, and 10,624 miles of service in 378 trips for 75 clients, who are restricted to wheelchairs or other mobility devices and are unable to be transported by volunteer vehicles.

Volunteer transportation drivers provided 78,589 miles of service to 142 clients for trip to doctor’s appointments, grocery shopping, and other various activities.

Social Service coordinators assisted seniors with a multitude of services, including reviewing drug plans and insurance plans, saving Osceola County seniors $76,000.

Social Service coordinators provide seniors assistance with Medicare/Medicaid insurance, Food Stamp assistance and state emergency applications, including home heating assistance and home repairs.

Fundraising for 2022 raised a total of $12,959, including:

  • COA Golf Outing - $11,000
  • Baked Potato Sale - $533
  • Holiday Pie Sale - $926
  • Christmas Dinner Concert - $500.

“COA is the premier provider for these services, and you have our commitment that we will continue to work hard to provide this care,” Halladay said. “Over the past two years our numbers have continued to grow. Our senior activities and trips are very popular with our clients. Bringing seniors together with a chance to experience new things with others offers a great experience.”

The senior center in Hersey offers activities such as, bingo, cards, puzzles, movies, live music, and games. Health and wellness programs are offered, as well, such as matter of balance, yoga, Tai Chi, walking club, and enhanced fitness. Educational and service programs are also provided including, cooking classes, CPR, personal safety, and tax services.

The center also offers outside trips and activities. This year’s senior trips included, Sliver Lake Sand Dunes, a tour of an elk ranch, Meijer Gardens, Frankenmuth, rock picking at Lake Michigan shoreline, bowling, and farm tours.

For more information about the senior center activities, or to participate in one of the COA programs call 231-734-5559.