Seniors in Los Angeles Area Have Access to Great Programs
Here’s a few great programs for seniors in the L.A. area. Similar programs may be available Statewide.
1. TRANSPORTATION Check out Metro, which operates the buses and trains, including the subway system. If you want to get around the area without driving your car or RV, you can apply online for a senior tap card. You can do this online. www.metro.net. A senior tap card will get you rides for 75 cents Peak hours, and only 35 cents Off Peak. This includes a free transfer to another bus or train within 2 hours, meaning you can scoot a long way around the city for 35 cents Off Peak. There are many other programs for seniors, special passes, etc., including some available at senior centers in cities other than Los Angeles. Santa Monica, for example, has a fantastic bus system, The Big Blue Bus.
2. HEALTH If you are on Medicare and need a supplemental plan, try SCAN. It’s free. Along with it you get a free Silver Sneaker Fitness card. This is good at thousands of gyms across the country, including exercise equipment, pool, steam/sauna (when available). You can go to many different gyms, so that means that you will have access to showers as well as fitness. One of the problems living stealth in a vehicle or living in an RV is shower and clean-up. Although there are shower programs in some cities and facilities, this is a great solution for seniors.
3. FOOD When you are living in a vehicle or RV, food becomes an issue. RVs usually have good cooking facilities, but if you are in a car or van it is a little harder. Small camp type stoves are good, but you need to be in a sheltered area to use it, away from prying eyes of residents who will call the cops if they see anyone using a cook stove on the street. Some people go to a park where there are camping or BBQ pits. The big parks in L.A. like Griffith Park have campsites where you can cook dinner.
Another way to go is to eat hot meals for free at Churches and other Food Coalition sites, like those we frequently post on this website. Please note that there are hundreds of free hot meals served in So. California every day. Check around the area you are staying in, the local city, the local churches, and look for food banks. The County, through Senior Centers, have hot lunch programs for a couple of bucks. These are decent meals, and are served around the County at designated park buildings and Senior Centers. The Senior Centers in some cities are really great, with free computers to use, free wi-fi, exercise programs, libraries, good bathrooms, etc. They have all kinds of free or cheap programs so check them out.
Even if you are living in a vehicle, a senior can have a great time in Southern California. Although many of us do not have large Social Security checks, if you don’t have to pay rent or utilities then you can have enough money to get by on using the strategies like those listed above.
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