laurence gross receiving award for SMAA at n4a conference
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SMAA Wins National Awards

August 22, 2016 – Laurence W. Gross, Executive Director of the Southern Maine Agency on Aging (SMAA) received The John A. Hartford Foundation Business Innovation Award. The first ever award was presented at the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (N4A) annual conference. The Southern Maine Agency on Aging (SMAA) also received two awards from N4A.  

John A. Hartford Business Innovation Award
Gross was nominated by MaineHealth’s Accountable Care Organization. Dr. Elizabeth Johnson wrote the following, “Under the tremendous leadership of Larry Gross and through the dedication of his employees, the Maine Health ACO rarely thinks of optimal care delivery without thinking about the influence of our close and trusted partner, Southern Maine Agency on Aging.”

Dr. Johnson continued, “SMAA has enabled trusted partnerships to support patients receiving care within the community they reside by innovating and delivering expertise with such programs as Chronic Disease Self-Management, Matter of Balance, Simply Delivered Meals and initiating conversations with and completing Advanced Directives for ACO patients within their trusted practices.”

The John A. Hartford Foundation is based in New York City and is dedicated to improving the care of older adults. With funds from the bequests of its founders, John A. Hartford and his brother George L. Hartford, both former chief executives of the Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company (the A&P grocery stores), The John A. Hartford Foundation seeks to make its best contribution by supporting efforts to improve the care of older adults.

Simply Delivered and Vet to Vet Get National Recognition
The Simply Delivered Program and Vet to Vet also received recognition from the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (N4A). Simply Delivered for ME received an Aging Innovations Award, the highest honor presented by n4a to member agencies. Simply Delivered for ME was among the top 16 of 46 local aging programs to receive honors during the n4a 2016 Annual Conference in San Diego, CA. SMAA’s Vet to Vet program received an Aging Achievement Award and was among 46 local programs to win this honor. 

Simply Delivered for ME offers up to 7 meals per week to individuals who for a number of reasons may not be able to cook for themselves. The nutritious meals arrive frozen and require only heating. Each meal costs $5 including delivery. 100% of the proceeds from Simply Delivered support SMAA’s Meals on Wheels program. 

Vet to Vet matches volunteers who are veterans of military service with an aging veteran in need of a visit. Talking with someone who understands military life can make all the difference to a lonely veteran. Earlier this year, Vet to Vet received an MVP Community Award from the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation.

Gross, SMAA’s Executive Director, stated, “We are very proud to receive these awards as they recognize our work supporting older people in southern Maine. Simply Delivered is a valuable resource for people who are not eligible for Meals on Wheels but need meal support. Vet to Vet is one of many programs we offer to combat social isolation among seniors.”

The National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) is the leading voice on aging issues for the 622 Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) across the country and a champion in our nation’s capital for the 256 Title VI Native American aging programs.

About the Southern Maine Agency on Aging
Since 1973, the Southern Maine Agency on Aging has provided residents of York and Cumberland counties with resources and assistance to address the issues and concerns of aging. The Agency serves people ages 60 and older, family caregivers, and people under 60 with a disability. Agency services are devoted to fulfilling its mission of improving the social, emotional, physical and economic well-being of older adults in southern Maine.