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Lewes, Delaware
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July 21, 2006     Cape Gazette
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July 21, 2006

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74 - CAPE GAZETTE, Friday, July 21 -Monday, July 24, 2006 III II CAPE LIFE i I Ruth Beideman, left, of Milford Senior Center's community outreach pro- ....  gram receives a Public Service Award from Social Security Commissioner Jo :i. Anne Barnhart for helping more than 500 area seniors enroll in Medicare pre- scription coverage and receive other financial assistance. "% : A': Georgia Leonhart photos Commissioner Jo Anne Barnhart, right, presents April Wiley with a Public Service Award for learning about new Medicare regulations, training volun- teers and establishing networks between state and federal agencies to help seniors get the Medicare prescription coverage they need. ' R Volunte,,,ers aid senlor00, dth Medicare By Georgia Leonhart Special to the Cape Gazette The Social Security Administration pre- sented Public Service Awards to Ruth Anne Beideman of Commhnity Outreach in Milford and April Wiley of the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program in Georgetown on Friday, July 14, at the Milford Senior Center. When Medicare's Plan D, covering pre- scriptions, went into effect, many semors were confused by its requirements and wor- ried about the expense. Beideman and Wiley have spent the past year helping peo- ple enroll in Plan D and helping them obtain the assistance they are entitled to. Beideman. a community outreach volun- teer at the Milford Senior Center. has helped more than 500 people atthe Milford Senior Center enroll in Plan D. She also helped many of them obtain additional financial aid they didn't know was avail- able. "A lot of people retire and lose their health plan and they come in anxious and upset," Beideman said. She starts from there and tries to help them qualify for help. Wiley, a volunteer services coordinator employed by the state Office of Volunteerism. recruited and trained senior volunteers to help people with Plan D enrollment. She also created networks with other agencies to see if people qualified for extra financial help. With Wiley's help, nearly 1.000 people were served. Of them, nearly 80 percent were able to get addition- al financial assistance they didn't know they qualified for. Director of the Office of Volunteerism Mary Ann Hook attributes much of the pro- gram's success to Wiley's efforts. "April did outstanding work. far beyond that required by her job. to embrace and uni]er- stand the complex new regulations." Hook said. "Peoplb can still apply for additional help," Wiley said. A volunteer is always Continued on page 79 Believe me when I tell you I know dogs As a grandparent, you have an important role in your children's well-being and are an integral part in their everyday life. You will lend guidance, wisdom and a cer- tain philosophy that comes from your own experiences. Well let me put it in a simpler way: your main function is -to act as an ATM machine, babysit the grandchil- dren or take care of the family pet. This past week, my grandparent duties have been to take care of the dog, a black Labrador, while everyone else goes on a vacation. It's not that they are going to a third world country, but to take the dog, well you have to pack all that extra stuff. In this case that amounts to a whopping one tin bowl. I have to tell you that I love my chore, particularly because this dog and I have a lot in common. We are both continuously on a diet, people talk about our weight AROUND TOWN Nancy Katz behind our backs, usually refer- ring to us as big butt, neither of us can fit into our clothes and we both love mojitos. Now Truly, the black Labrador is what I would call a real "Jersey girl." If she were human, she would be wearing tight jeans cut with stovepipe thin legs, killer high heals that would give a rea- sonable person a nose bleed and hair teased up to the ceiling, so stiff not even Superman could penetrate it. Believe me when I tell you I know dogs. I've had them all my life. Growing up we had a dog, which was called the family pet, which meant everyone took care of it. Dogs had old-fashioned names like Lassie, Spot, Old Yeller and Martha. In fact, for years I believed Lassie was part human because the veterinarian we took our dog to had an auto- graphed picture of Lassie on his counter. The dogs in those days reacted to commands like, sit, fetch, come and stay, just by the tone of your voice. They hung out car windows and occasionally walked with you to the ice-cream parlorwhere they staked out the nearest child under 3. waiting for that nice big plop of vanilla to hit the sidewalk. But I have to say, times have changed. I was mildly surprised at how casual the environment was when I arrived to pick up the Jersey girl and bring her down to the beach. For one thing, no one in the house seemed to know where she was, how long she had been gone, and when she would be back. There didn't seem to be any great urgency since the where- abouts of the dog didn't involve any cell phone text messages or take out Chinese food. Quite frankly this didn't' surprise me since they subscribe to a philoso- phy of training their dog under someone named Helmut, who comes to the house, charges a cou- ple of thousand dollars and hasn't succeeded in anything but making the dog run in circles every time the phone rings. I'm not saying we did a better job back then. but - and it's a big but - at least the dog understood the command to come. Apparently the modem thinking is to only use hand signals so as not to upset the dog by your tone of voice, thereby necessitating the services of a dog psychologist or Helmut's brother- in-law. In order to communicate with the Jersey Girl I ended up resem- bling an airport worker signaling a plane to land out on the runway, either that or I looked like I was telling a baseball player to steal second, but only after the count is three and two. The Jersey Girl and I have bonded all week; we are united in Cheetos, Fritos, cake and ice cream. Ah, yes, it's good to be a dog in Delaware. Who needs those people on Nantucket any- way?