Recently, one of the members of our Reno senior board was at a Reno Neighborhood Advisory Board meeting where a woman in the audience was in tears over the lack of affordable housing here. She told them she was soon to be homeless and has been frantically looking for a new place to live that she could afford. She prefers to stay here in Washoe County, but has gone as far as West Wendover to try to find a place to live and has found nothing yet. Wanting to help in any way he could, our board member took her information and contacted me to find out how he could assist her.
My first call was to Cathy Steed, Resident Services Coordinator at the Reno Housing Authority (RHA), who is a wealth of information about local affordable housing and support services for seniors. Before coming to RHA, she spent 16 years working with the Nevada Aging and Disability Services Division (ADSD) so is an expert on all manner of services for seniors. Contact: email@example.com or (775) 329-3630.
Steed helps her RHA residents access wraparound services to meet their needs. She works together with Mirabel Martinez, an RHA Asset Manager. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org, fluent in Spanish.
Martinez manages three RHA senior and disabled complexes with a total of almost 300 units (some one person, some two person). Mirabel said, “Our managers care about every resident. We do well-care checks to make sure they are doing ok in their homes. We keep an eye out for falling incidents, inability to make meals or do housekeeping, failure to take prescribed medications, getting behind in bill paying, signs of elder abuse, neglect or exploitation and more. If we see something wrong, we work with the resident or their family members to fix it. Cathy and I make a great team, and we love our work and our clients!”
Steed said, “We work with our RHA residents 1-to-1 and do frontline services, like helping them pay bills, solve maintenance issues, get them qualified for NV Energy support and SNAP (aka Food Stamps), assist with Medicaid applications, and Medicaid/Medicare questions. We also bring some of our service partners to our community center, such as SHIP (Medicare counselors), Access to Health Care, Food Bank, veterans groups and others to make presentations, answer questions and help the residents access the services they need. We want to give them the tools they need to live better, healthier lives.”