The Voice of the Wildcats

The Paw Print

The Voice of the Wildcats

The Paw Print

The Voice of the Wildcats

The Paw Print

Supriya Singh: Committed to Helping the Senior Population in Her Community

COVID-19 has made it challenging to help those in most need — but not impossible.
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Foster City Village is a nonprofit organization committed to helping older adults continue to live in their homes.

Supriya Singh, a 55-year-old Bay Area resident, enjoys giving back to her community, especially by helping whose needs are often unmet. Singh works for an organization called Foster City Village, a non-profit, membership-based organization that provides services to older adults in the 94404 zip code area.

According to their website, the mission of Foster City Village is “to make it possible for older adults to continue living in their homes as they age by providing mobility, practical assistance, easy access to services, social connections, and educational opportunities.”

Their website also contains information about the services provided by the Foster City Village, such as “transportation, check-in calls and visits, a home safety evaluation, simple in-home handyman and technical services, membership gatherings, and activities giving seniors the opportunity to interact with others.”

Foster City Village serves not just members but the whole community. Through alliances with Second Harvest Food Bank and Meals on Wheels, they distribute groceries and cooked meals to those who qualify.

Singh has been involved with Foster City Village for three years. She started as a board member for the organization and is currently President of the Board of Directors. Some of Singh’s responsibilities with the organization are setting organizational priorities, financial oversight and fundraising, presiding at Board meetings, expanding the board and assessing its performance, determining policy, and ensuring organizational effectiveness and legal compliance.

“I heard about the organization during my search for some resources for my mother, but then I heard about all the great things that they do, and I wanted to be a part of that team,” Singh said.

At that time, Singh worked 12-hour days at Kaiser Permanente in the analytics department. While at work, Singh’s mother would be home alone, and she wanted someone to visit her mother. Singh shared that, at the time, Foster City Village did not have a program to do home visits and check-in calls. Once she joined, she set up the WE CARE program to keep in touch with those members who find it more difficult to leave their homes. Today, she continues to chair the WE CARE program and co-chairs other similar committees.

“I feel it’s very important for older adults who live by themselves to have that social interaction,” said Singh.

Due to the shelter in place order, the way Foster City Village provides its services had to be readjusted.

“It has completely changed how we serve our members; we have had to really look at our organization and find completely different ways to do every single thing that we did before,” Singh said. “We are now intensely using technology for everything because we cannot meet in person. We do regular phone check-in calls with all of our members to make sure that they are okay, that they have their groceries, medications, and other necessities. For those who are able to use technology, we provide or point our members to friendly, easy-to-use online resources to keep them healthy, happy, and engaged.”

Volunteers continue to render service to Foster City Village members. However, these services provided by volunteers have been limited to essentials only. Singh shared that volunteers have been provided with Personal Protective Equipment.

Singh also talks about the action youth can take on this subject. Singh incites the youth population to help older adults near them.

“I encourage you to reach out to older adults, maybe within your community,” Singh recommended. “Reach out to that neighbor down the street, who may be living by themselves, see how they are doing, and ask what they may need. This small gesture may mean the world to them and [can] give you much happiness.”

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About the Contributor
Fernanda Ramirez
Fernanda Ramirez, Staff Writer
Fernanda Ramirez is a staff writer for The Paw Print and a first-year journalism student. She is interested in writing about health, lifestyle, and technology, and she is looking forward to writing and photography. In her free time, she enjoys exploring new places, reading, and running.

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