Pasadena Village, a support community for older adults, kicked off its tenth year in Pasadena with an official Pasadena Chamber of Commerce ribbon-cutting ceremony Tuesday, as they opened their newly renovated headquarters on Mountain Avenue.
Said Executive Director Katie Brandon, at a gathering following the ribbon ceremony, “Pasadena Village is trying to be more relevant. We know that the village movement works in Pasadena. Our 130 members in Pasadena are staying connected and relevant, and are able to have a sense of purpose and a support system that they need as they get older.
“So,” she continued, “for today, it’s great to connect with the Pasadena Chamber of Commerce and have the business community come out and support us. So many members of the business community are such generous supporters of the Village, or just community partners with us, and this means so much to us.”
According to Brandon, there are over 200 such independent and similar non-profit “villages” throughout the United States, connected by a network, with 50 villages in California.
“Pasadena was one of the first ones,” she explained. “A lot of the others are new and emerging, and they all give back to the community, but also reflect their communities, because we are all member-driven organizations.”
Brandon continued, “Unlike other places where you come in and get services, this is a place where you can come in and express your personality, and connect with other people, in whatever way you’re interested.”
“Pasadena Village is unique,” said Pasadena Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Paul Little, “because it’s mostly a volunteer organization that supports itself, in providing activities, help, support, everything for the members who are senior citizens and who want to live on their own.”
Pasadena Village was formed in 2010, after a group of Pasadena residents began meeting regularly and exploring how they might help each other “age in place successfully,” said the website.
The group learned about Boston’s Beacon Hill Village, a pioneer in the national Village movement, and began discussing how to make their lives “the best we can make them.”
The group expanded and gathered more supporters over the next two years. A founding Board was formed and the group was incorporated as a non-profit organization. After two years of planning and fundraising, in September, 2012, the Pasadena Village was launched.
According to Brandon, the Village has scheduled 50 member events in September alone, ranging from hikes to Spanish lessons, to knitting and book clubs. Membership funds support 40% of the group’s activities, and yearly membership rates are based on a sliding scale.
More information is available at www.pasadenavillage.org.