Season’s Greeting from Elders in Action

With your support,  we are strong

and making a difference!

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We have the privilege of being part of an organization that is making a profound and positive impact on the lives of older adults. Here is just one person whose life was touched by the work we do.

"The Personal Advocate helped me realize the situation I was in was not my fault and coached me through solving it."

“The Personal Advocate helped me realize the situation I was in was not my fault and coached me through solving it.”

Rachel, 75, had been given a 30-day notice of a rent increase she could not afford. She was in a crisis situation but not alone, she called Elders in Action.   Together, she and our Personal Advocate, composed a letter to the management that explained her situation. 

 The wonderful outcome of this partnership is that the management of her existing apartment building agreed to extend her lease until she was accepted at a more affordable building. Rachel, assisted by her personal advocate, can now avoid the unexpected increase in living expenses and an uncertain future living situation.

 Older adults can sometimes be overpowered, overlooked and silenced. Elders in Action volunteers amplify the voice of those in need and ensure they are visible in a society that is often moving too fast to pay attention. When you support Elders in Action, you are making the concerns and hopes of older adults visible. With your help, Elders in Action is paying attention. 

 Please make a meaningful contribution towards our end-of-year goal of $10,000, to enable Elders in Action to keep paying attention to those who need it most. 

Encore Action Team makes long-awaited kiosk a reality at Portland Memory Garden

Elders in Action’s Encore Action Teams Making A Difference

One of Elders in Action’s partners, the Portland Memory Garden, had a critical project to build an information kiosk in their special garden that is designed to meet the special needs of those with memory disorders (such as Alzheimer’s disease) and to provide respite for their caregivers.  EiA contacted one of our corporate volunteer partners, Tokyo Electron Ltd., and before you know the kiosk was in place.  Read about this powerful project below.

Elders in Action’s Encore Action Teams utilize a service learning approach which creates meaningful and rewarding  hands-on service experiences for  volunteers. Our Encore Action Teams provide service activities that are completed in a day or in a series which last a few weeks. Participants achieve a greater knowledge of issues affecting older adults and the projects make a real difference in people’s lives. If interested in becoming involved in a Encore Action team give us a call at 503-235-5474.

Memory Garden Kiosk

Remember Elders in Action on #GivingTuesday

Remember Elders in Action on GivingTuesday

December 2nd is GivingTuesday, a day following Black Friday and Cyber Monday, designated to support non-profits and the communities we serve.

This year Elders in Action is trying something new and have teamed up with a Portland-based philanthropically minded start-up called Impact Flow. They match donors to projects that are looking for financial support to get off the ground. Will you support our project?

We invite you to help Elders in Action launch its next Financial Fraud Panel.
Your support will help older adults learn how to protect themselves from the unscrupulous activities targeted directly at them!
To make a donation please click here.  Thank you!

P.S. We will let you know the details of Fraud Panel when it happens and hope to see you there!

Get Ready for the 2015 State Legislative Session!

Get Ready for the 2015 State Legislative Session!

Legislative Advocacy 101 Panel


Monday, December 15, 2014
6:00 to 8: 00 p.m.
Portland Building, 2nd floor, Auditorium
1120 SW 5th Ave., Portland

This “Advocacy 101” event will provide community members with tips on how to be an effective advocate for your community or neighborhood during this upcoming 2015 state legislative session and 114th Congress. A panel of elected officials, congressional staff, and professional advocates will share their advice and answer questions about how the community can make an impact on public policy at the state and federal levels.


  • Sen. Michael Dembrow (HD 23)
  • Rep. Jennifer Williamson (HD 36)
  • Grace Neal, Field Director for U.S. Senator Ron Wyden
  • Felisa Hagins, SEIU Local 49

Information you will gain from the panel:

  • How to work effectively with legislators and their staff
  • Strategies for mobilizing your base of membership or coalitions to maximize advocacy impact
  • Lobbying do’s and don’ts

For more information or to address accessibility needs:

The City of Portland will make reasonable accommodation for people with disabilities and people needing assistance with language interpretation and translation. Please notify us by Tuesday, December 9 if you need assistance.

PHONE: (503) 823-3093


TTY: (503) 823-6868

Oregon Relay Service at (800) 735-2900


The event is located on the downtown transit mall next to Yellow and Green MAX lines.

Questions about specific legislative items? How to reach the Mayor and City Commissioners

If you have questions about specific legislative issues please contact City Council offices using this link, which has contact information for City Council offices (see photos of Mayor and Commissioners on right side of page):

Co-Sponsored by:

City of Portland, Office of Mayor Hales, Office of Neighborhood Involvement and Office of Government Relations

Fond Farewell to our Executive Director Leslie Foren

Fond Farewell to Leslie Foren
It is with a heavy heart but with much thanks that we say farewell to our Executive Director, Leslie Foren. Leslie is leaving Elders in Action after 13 years to explore new opportunities. One of our staff members really captured our feelings.
“Sure, she’s articulate, organized, a great manager and fun to work with. But, ultimately, what makes her so very special – is that she’s real and she cares and you can feel that whenever she’s in the same room. There’s a humility and calm that comes with true integrity.”
Please join Elders in Action board, staff, volunteers and partners for an informal send-off on Tuesday, December 2, 2014, 2:00 pm- 5:00 pm at the Elders in Action office (1411 SW Morrison St., Suite 290, Portland, OR).  There will be special tribute at 3:30 pm.
RSVPs are appreciated but not required.
Call 503-235-5474 or by email.

Elders in Action’s Position on City of Portland Street Fees

              From the west hills to the eastern border of the City of Portland we have gaps in our sidewalk system, dangerous crosswalks along major arterials and inaccessible transit stations making travel difficult and dangerous for a large portion of our population. Older adults and people with disabilities using canes, walkers or mobility devices require safe sidewalks, ADA access ramps and well-timed and maintained crosswalks to access the services provided by retail, medical and entertainment establishments in the City.

In the tri-county area, between 2010 and 2030, Metro projects a growth of 106% in the number of those aged 65 and older compared to an increase of 34.6% in the region’s population overall. Both the City and Multnomah County have adopted the Age Friendly Action Plan focusing on future development and activities that foster physical, social, and service environments that make Portland and the County attractive and accessible to all ages and abilities. An important recommendation of this plan is to “dedicate appropriate funding to create an accessible and integrated transportation system that meets the needs of a rapidly aging population”.
Since May of 2014, two city work groups and an advisory committee, formed by the Mayor and Commissioner Novick, have worked with Portland Bureau of Transportation staff and City Council to revise the proposed Transportation User Fee. Some workgroup members have strongly advocated for the majority of funds generated by such a fee or tax to be used from “curb to curb” for maintenance of pavement. Only 25% of the funds, they suggest, should be allocated to safety improvements. It is important to note that while this allocation scheme benefits automobiles it does not address the needs of pedestrians and alternately-abled individuals in the City.
All parties involved in the revision of the proposed Transportation Fee agree that any new transportation funding should allocate revenue to both maintenance and safety improvements to our city’s transportation system. City Council will ultimately decide how best to proportion the dedication of these funds. It is our hope that the final distribution scheme weighs equally the needs of those travelling by foot or using mobility devices with those travelling by car. We strongly encourage Council to establish a 50-50 funding distribution between maintenance and safety projects as part of any new transportation funding scheme.

Leslie Foren
Executive Director
Elders in Action

Join Elders in Action at the American Diabetes Expo on November 22

Portland EXPO 2014

banner - Portland EXPO

Begin your journey to health at the American Diabetes Association EXPO. Find out your risk for developing diabetes, stroke and heart attack with our free health screenings. Learn how to eat healthy, be active and change the future of diabetes in Oregon at the largest gathering dedicated to health.

The EXPO is FREE and includes health screenings, cooking demonstrations, over 70 product and service exhibitors, as well as leading experts talking about diabetes management, behavior change and prevention. Learn tips to stay healthy from head to toe.

Visit the American Diabetes Association EXPO Portland and Join the Millions® in the fight to Stop Diabetes®. Learn how to live healthy, be active and change the future of diabetes for you and your family.

Have a question about EXPO? Contact Jessica Gould at 503-736-2770 ext. 7294 or

Step Out at EXPO

This year our annual Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes event is moving to the Oregon Convention Center the morning of EXPO. Join us and walk to support the American Diabetes Association.

Register today at

- See more at:

Elders in Action’s Commission Position on 2014 Ballot Measures

The Elders in Action Commission regularly reviews ballot measures and votes on whether to support, oppose or stay neutral on each measure. In September, they reviewed statewide ballot measures and one City of Portland measure, to determine their stands on each. Below are their endorsements.
In addition to the Commission endorsements and the voter pamphlet mailed to your home, many ballot measures have own web sites developed by opponents and proponents. For Measure 90 and 92, see the Citizen Initiative Review Commission recommendations.

The following are the Elders in Action Commission endorsements:

Measure 88:  Drivers Card – “Safe Roads”

A law creating a four-year driver’s card, shorter than the usual eight years for a driver’s license, for those who meet all qualifications other than proof of legal residence in the United States. This legislation was passed by the 2013 Legislature but citizen opponents obtained enough signatures to refer it to voters for confirmation. A “yes” vote passes it and authorizes the card; a “no” vote rejects it.  Elders in Action’s Commission Position:  Support

Measure 89:

  Equal Rights Amendment
A constitutional amendment specifically barring discrimination based on gender, a state version of the Equal Rights Amendment for women’s rights once proposed for the U.S. Constitution.Twenty-two states have similar ERA provisions.
Elders in Action’s Commission Position:  Support

Measure 90:

Top Two Elections

 A law changing Oregon’s primary election process, which dates to 1904. Instead of registered voters within the two major political parties choosing party nominees, the measure would allow the top two finishers in an all-comers primary to advance to the general election, regardless of party affiliation. California, Washington and Louisiana use top-two primaries.
Elders in Action’s Commission Position:  Oppose

Measure 91: Marijuana Initiative

A law legalizing the recreational use of marijuana, based on regulation and taxation to be determined by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission. A version failed in 2012, the same year voters in Washington and Colorado approved their own measures. A similar measure is up for a vote in Alaska.
Elders in Action’s Commission Position:  Support


Measure 92: GMO Labeling
A law requiring the labeling of genetically engineered foods produced and sold in Oregon. Voters in Jackson and Josephine counties approved bans on genetically modified organisms in May, 2014. Vermont is the only state with such a law, but it is being challenged in court.
Elders in Action’s Commission Position: Support

Measure 26-159: City of Portland Parks Bond
This measure would allow the City of Portland to issue up to $68 million in general obligation bonds for capital costs, including repairs and improvements, of facilities owned or operated by Portland Parks & Recreation. A tax of $.0877/1000 in assessed value is in place now but expires in 2015. This measure would extend this tax.
Elders in Action’s Commission Position: Support

For additional information regarding ballot measures go to the Multnomah County Elections Web Page ballot measure summaries.

Elder Financial Abuse Session on Nov.6 with Attny. General Ellen Rosenblum & City Commissioner Nick Fish


Elder Financial Abuse

Listening & Learning Session


Please join Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum and Portland City Commissioner Nick Fish for an informative panel discussion on Elder Financial Abuse.

Thursday, November 6th from 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm
Q Center, 4115 N. Mississippi Ave., Portland, OR

 This event is for older Oregonians and those who care for them. Join us to learn more about:

  • What is Financial Abuse?
  • How can I protect myself from becoming a victim?
  • Where can I report concerns or find recources for support?

RSVP at 503-235-5474 or by email 

The meeting location is accessible to persons with disabilities. A request for an interpreter for the hearing impaired or for other accommodations for persons with disabilities should be made at least 48 hours before the event to Ellen Klem at (503) 507-1061 /