Home Valley Program for Aging Services to celebrate 50 years with anniversary events all year
Health, Local

Valley Program for Aging Services to celebrate 50 years with anniversary events all year

VPASValley Program for Aging Services has faced major challenges over its 50-year history. Most notably, the rapidly aging Baby Boomers known as the “grey wave” and the COVID-19 pandemic.

VPAS responded with seminars, consultation, dementia education and more support for family caregivers.

“VPAS has been an important and reliable presence in our communities for 50 years,” said Beth Bland, VPAS executive director. “Preparing for the grey wave and then keeping our older neighbors safe during the pandemic made us stronger and more resourceful than ever.

“We have really leaned into our role as experts in aging, and I think that expertise will become more evident in the years to come. VPAS is prepared to meet the needs of a new generation of older adults.”

In 2024, VPAS celebrates 50 years of service to communities throughout the Shenandoah Valley. Today, VPAS serves the counties of Augusta, Bath, Highland, Rockbridge and Rockingham, and the cities of Buena Vista, Harrisonburg, Lexington, Staunton and Waynesboro.

With information and referral services, case management, Medicare counseling, senior transportation, recreational and health programming, meal delivery, congregate meals and caregiver support available, VPAS helps community members as they age.

To learn more about VPAS services, visit vpas.info or call (540) 949-7141.

Anniversary celebrations

Anniversary celebrations are taking place in several locations this year with special fundraisers and gatherings highlighting the role of VPAS in local communities.

Upcoming events include a “Songs and Sundaes” party at VPAS headquarters in Waynesboro, “A Reason to Ride” motorcycle and bike ride in Harrisonburg and “Maury River Players and Singers” live concerts in Buena Vista.

History and community input

VPAS is also bringing its history to life by sharing newspaper clippings, photos and other archives from the past 50 years, including impact stories from older adults or family caregivers whose lives have been touched by VPAS.

Community members are encouraged to send these to VPAS at 975 S. High St., Harrisonburg, Va., or by email to [email protected].

Crystal Graham

Crystal Graham

Crystal Abbe Graham is the regional editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1999 graduate of Virginia Tech, she has worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor for several Virginia publications, written a book, and garnered more than a dozen Virginia Press Association awards for writing and graphic design. She was the co-host of "Viewpoints," a weekly TV news show, and co-host of Virginia Tonight, a nightly TV news show. Her work on "Virginia Tonight" earned her a national Telly award for excellence in television.