Posts Tagged ‘aarp’
Saturday I attended the 3rd Annual Health, Wellness and Empowerment Summit presented by the Wilmington Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
The Empowering Our Sisters: Our Journey to Wellness event was held at the John H. Ammon Medical Education Center at the Christiana Hospital.
I was invited to attend and to provide social media coverage by my “Sistah in Greekdom” Porsha Hargrove of Porsha Hargrove Consulting.
Delta Sigma Theta and Sigma Gamma Rho
Arriving early Saturday morning, I followed the directional signs to the designated parking area, which was quite far from the actual venue. However, there was a shuttle bus waiting to transport us to the front door of the Education Center.
The lobby quickly began filling up with over 100 women of all ages and races. The registration tables were set up front and each attendee was greeted graciously and presented with a name badge and a reusable bag.
Inside the bag there were a few chatskis as well as a program folder which contained the full Summit Schedule, a Health Guide, Health Score Card, and Emergency Prepare a Kit, lined paper for notes and an Evaluation Form.
Also in the lobby were Exhibitor tables with health and wellness information including FREE Health Screenings and an opportunity to get additional raffle tickets for the various prize drawings throughout the day.
Long tables held Continental Breakfast goodies such as bagels, Belvita Biscuits and fruit, as well as WaWa Coffee which I made my way over to because you know me, my favorite flavor of WaWa coffee is Hazelnut.
The program began with a Welcome and Acknowledgements from Karen Bostick, Chapter President and Linda Thomas, President, followed by an Invocation by the Reverend Natalie Alford from Trinity AME Church in Middletown, DE.
Sarah Harrison, Health Summit Chair presented the purpose, objectives and an introduction of the moderator then the young ladies ages 11-17 relocated to another room outside of the auditorium.
Their Empowerment Workshop Sessions was being presented by One Village Alliance, “Girls Can Do Anything”, and for those of us older than 18, we stayed in the main auditorium.
There were many wonderful speakers who spoke on various important health issues including the Top Cancers in Delaware and the Interconnectivity of Spiritual, Emotional/Mental and Physical Health and Wellness.
Microphones were set up on the floor giving attendees an opportunity to ask questions or respond to questions posed by the moderators.
Love Congo, a Triple Negative Breast Cancer Survivor spoke of her journey and her inspirational message touched us all.
A mini break gave us an opportunity to visit the exhibitors, network, participate in the FREE health screenings or just grab another cup of coffee, water, juice or run to the restroom.
The “Prize Patrol” was on duty during the breaks and there were some really wonderful giveaways – unfortunately, I didn’t win any of them!
Lunch was provided by Zoup.com and it was a well prepared and delicious box lunch containing a variety of soups, sandwiches and salads.
The Keynote Speaker, Rita Choula, Senior Advisor, AARP spoke on “Empowering the Caregiver” which is a hot button topic in today’s society and Delaware is leading the charge on working with caregivers of cancer patients.
The highlight of the day was the Fashion Show, which was moderated by Cheris Lockett and Donametria Stallings, Miss DSU.
The fashion show models were physicians, health care providers, survivors and young sisters all of which did their thing on the Runway, it was beautiful!
I would like to thank the lovely ladies of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Wilmington Chapter for hosting this Health, Wellness and Empowerment Summit and look forward to next year’s event.
Please use the hashtag #DeltaWellness2016 to see even more pictures posted to my Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts.
A special thank you to my fellow Social Media Diva, Lorena and of course my “Sistah in Greekdom”, Porsha Hargrove for inviting me!
Hello friends and Welcome to Money Monday
Remember last month when I told you that hubby couldn’t buy me a gift for my birthday? Well after checking his bank statement a few days earlier, he realized that there had been some fraudulent charges made against his account. Luckily, they weren’t excessive, but after contacting the bank his debit card was immediately suspended, oh by the way, there’s a charge for a replacement, which I think is unfair but that’s another story for another Money Monday.
Anywho, I’m glad that he had finally heeded my warning in making sure to check his statements as well as any credit card or medical bills that were received in the mail. There are so many ways for scammers to get you and it doesn’t just happen during the busy holiday season.
Scammers and fraudsters are ever vigilant, therefore, as wise consumers we must be the same, so here is a list of 12 tips to help you avoid fraud and keep the scammers at bay!
- Install a lockable mailbox to reduce mail theft.
Limit the number of credit cards you have.
Reconcile your check and credit card statements as soon as possible, and immediately challenge any purchases that you did not make.
Scrutinize your utility and subscription bills to make sure the charges are yours.
Keep a list of all your credit and bank accounts in a secure place so you can quickly call the issuers to inform them about missing or stolen cards. Or make a copy front and back of your cards with the numbers to customer service and fraud departments.
Do not toss pre-approved credit offers in your trash or recycling bin without first tearing them into small pieces or shredding them. Dumpster divers can use these offers to order credit cards in your name and mail them to their address. Always do the same with other sensitive information, such as credit card receipts and phone bills.
Avoid credit repair scams. If you are tempted to contact a credit repair company for help, use considerable caution. The FTC and a number of state attorney generals have sued credit repair companies for false promises to remove bad information from credit reports. Only inaccurate information may be removed from your credit report; negative information that is accurate (such as a bankruptcy filing or a defaulted loan) will stay on your credit report as long as governing laws allow.
- Never give any credit card, bank or Social Security information to anyone by telephone unless you can positively verify that the call is legitimate.
- Minimize exposure of your Social Security and credit card numbers. If the numbers are requested for check-cashing purposes, ask if the business has alternative options, such as a check-cashing card.
- Do not have your bank send your new checks to your home address. Tell the bank that you prefer to pick them up.
- Destroy all checks immediately after you close a checking account. Destroy or keep in a secure place any courtesy checks that your bank or credit card company sends to you.
- Do not allow your financial institution to print your Social Security Number on your personal checks. I remember when your social security numbers were not only printed on your checks but also on your driver’s license as well. Times sure have changed!
Have you ever been a victim of a scammer, whether online, via the telephone or mail, if so, then you know how difficult, time consuming and sometime costly it can be to get things back on track.
Check www.aarp.org/fraudwatchnetwork if you are concerned about an organization that doesn’t sound legitimate and call 877-908-3360 which is the AARP Foundation Fraud Fighter Center.
Better Safe than Sorry!
Stay Blessed ~ No Stress in 2014!
Hello friends, Happy Money Monday
Several months ago I attended an AARP Seminar and one of the topics of discussion was collecting Social Security benefits. A few women in the audience were concerned because they believed that when the time came for them to collect Social Security, the system would be bankrupt.
The speaker tried to reassure them that that would not be the case, but one woman was not totally convinced.
So let’s debunk some of the other myths to make sure the sky is not falling.
Myth 1: Social Security payments are based on your last 5/10/15 years of work — False
Your Social Security payments are based on your lifetime average earnings. For retirement payments, SSA uses your best 35 years of work, indexed for inflation. (Fewer years are used for mid-career death or disability.)
You can get a Social Security estimate by signing up at ssa.gov/myaccount
Myth 2: You should postpone Social Security to get the most retirement income. —Maybe so, maybe no.
Taking your retirement payments later, up to age 70, gives you a higher monthly payment. But will you survive long enough to reap the benefit? Will you drain your savings while waiting for Social Security to start, short-changing your later years? If you withdraw from tax-deferred retirement accounts, will you pay more in taxes than you would if you drew Social Security instead?
Myth 3: You have to die for your family to get Social Security on your work record. —False
Your spouse and children (and yes, your former spouse) can be eligible for Social Security, even while you’re alive. Make sure to take family benefits into account in your retirement planning.
By the way, it is true that your family can get Social Security if you die. Just don’t wait that long!
Myth 4: If you work and earn over $15,000 while on Social Security, your payments stop. – False
It’s true that there’s a threshold earnings level set every year; it’s $15,120 in 2013. What’s false is that if you earn anything over the threshold, your Social Security will stop.
First, the threshold applies only to those under Full Retirement Age (FRA, currently 66). Once you are over FRA, you can work all you want and still get full Social Security. You’d have to earn quite a bit, perhaps $30,000 to $50,000 to lose all your Social Security.
Finally, remember that only work income — wages or self-employment earnings — count against your Social Security. Pension, interest, dividends, capital gains, etc. don’t count.
Myth 5: Social Security is losing money/is broke. — False
Social Security is still running a surplus and banks the extra money they bring in each year, so their reserve funds are growing.
Counting all three revenue streams shows SSA running a surplus ($54 billion in 2012), and surpluses continuing until 2020.
What happens after 2020? SSA’s reserves provide full payments until 2033. After that, tax revenue alone will provide about 75% of needed funds. Yes, Congress will have to increase revenue and/or cut benefits before then to close the gap.
The bottom line is that you’ll make better retirement decisions with accurate information. Best wishes for an abundant retirement, and as always, keep on planning.
Information reposted from: www.marketwatch.com
Do you have questions regarding Social Security Benefits?
Stay Blessed ~ No Stress in 2014
belief it or not but according to AARP, after the age of 50, you are considered a Senior, someone who is entitled to receive discounts with an annual membership. However, if you are like me, a Boomer over the age of 50 who loves discounts but doesn’t want to be called a Senior, you might want to embrace the tag Senior but instead call the perks Boomer Benefits.
Once you turn 50, and join AARP you can get discounts on car rentals at Hertz, Alamo and National; 20% off hotel reservations a Sheraton, Ramada and Westin. Get a free donut with the purchase of a cup of coffee and Dunkin Donuts; 10% at Michaels and 30% off prescription glasses at Lens Crafters. There are also discounts on mattress purchases from Sleepy’s.
As you move further up in age, the discounts gets better and are more to my liking. For example when you turn 55, you can get 10% off on Tuesdays at Ross, 5% off at Pathmark, 25% off at Salvation Army Thrift Stores on Wednesdays and 10-25% off at certain Goodwill stores on select days…watch for some major thrifted hauls in a few years!
When you turn 60, discounts include 15% off in store purchases at Kohl’s and 30-60% off regular admission at AMC theaters. At the age of 62, 15% off most fares at Amtrak which my grandmother would take advantage of for her annual trips to North Carolina.
There are discounted lifetime passes to federal and national parks and 5% on Greyhound and Peter Pan bus fares. I guess this becomes the best time to starting traveling around the USA.
When you turn 65, discounted fares at major airlines including Southwest, United, American, Continental and U.S. Airways; $3 off haircuts at Great Clips and discounted plans at AT&T and Verizon senior plans.
There are over 175,000 AARP members in the State of Delaware alone, most are downstate where we like to call “’slower lower Delaware”. They can take advantage of these statewide benefits as well:
- free classes at DelTech and University of Delaware
- free smoke detectors and electric fans (income based)
- reduced tools on Delaware bridges
- ½ off taxi far
es via DART SCAT program
- discount admission at the Delaware Theatre Company and Delaware Art Museum
- $50 discount when adopting a dog at the Delaware Humane Society
What Senior Savings or Boomer Benefits would you like offered in your state?
Stay Blessed ~ No Stress in 2014
Taking care of grandparents and parents takes its toll on caregivers who are often sandwiched between the activities of children, a busy work schedule and the needs of aging loved ones.
In 2008, when my grandmother’s health began to deteriorate I became her primary caregiver until the day she died in 2009 at the age of 98. Fortunately I was able to work from home most days but trying to keep a normal schedule with both boys in school and the daily grind of running a household oftentimes became overwhelming.
Although hubby and the boys were there to support me, I wish I had know about the resources offered by AARP which would have been a tremendous help. AARP offers several resources to help the nearly 44 million Americans – 1 in 5 adults – who are family caregivers for a relative or friend over the age 50.
THE THANKS PROJECT
The Thanks Project is an online platform that enables caregivers to publically recognize the parents for whom they care. Each individual ‘thanks’ will be integrated into the interactive tapestry, representing the 42 million caregivers in the US. Caregivers everywhere deserve to be recognized for the important work that they do, and Father’s Day remind us why it’s worth it.
CAREGIVING RESOURCE CENTER
The Caregiving Resource Center by the AARP offers articles by experts, answers to pressing questions, the latest in caregiver news and a helpline for caregivers to connect on a daily basis.
PREPARE TO CARE: A PLANNING GUIDE FOR FAMILIES
Prepare to Care is a downloadable pdf e-book that walks caregivers through the steps of starting the conversation with aging parents about upcoming decisions that will have to be made and to form a team and create a plan before an emergency arises rather than waiting until a crisis occurs to act.
At the end of the guide is a both a glossary and two pages of additional resources for caregivers handling a range of issues related parents from Alzheimers care to legal issues affecting older adults.
Hello Friends and Happy Tax Day Tuesday!
If you’re anything like me no matter what year in your career you’re in, the countdown to retirement has begun. I never told hubby, but when he signed his retirement papers on the 28th of February I was extremely jealous! It’s not that I’m ready to sit home and do nothing or pack my bags and start traveling, I am just looking forward to the day when I have the option to work or NOT!
At this point in my life I am too young and active to retire or at least retire without a plan, which is why this blog is part of a bigger 5-year plan. I’ve thought about starting a small business, but it would have to one of little to no stress and definitely little to NO commuting involved!
Ideally, I would love to sit on the dock of a bay with a laptop or tablet writing and creating. Perhaps I’ll have a little shack where tourist can purchase fishing bait and tackle!
There was an article published in USA Today that caught my attention, it stated that “more older entrepreneurs are starting businesses after they’ve worked and retired from other careers”. They have been labeled “encore entrepreneurs”. An encore entrepreneur is someone over the age of 50 who starts a small business or begins a new career. Some of these small businesses are non-profits that provide a social need such as job training for the unemployed. Others turn their hobby or passion into an income stream which is part of my 5-year plan.
Of course as with any new start-up there are obstacles and challenges, but with age comes wisdom and knowledge both of which are a plus for the encore entrepreneur. Job layoffs, supplementing or replacing income are just a few reasons for starting a business after the age of 50.
However, with people living longer becoming an encore entrepreneur gives us an opportunity to stay active and do something that perhaps we’ve always wanted to do.
What about you, are you ready to retire or regroup and become an encore entrepreneur?
Hello Friends and Happy Thankful Thursday!
Thursday is the best day of the week because it gives me an opportunity to share one of my many blessings and to also read some of yours. I am not shy when it comes to talking about being blessed by the best, nor acknowledging that I know from where those blessings flow.
I do not discriminate and respect all cultures, beliefs, and religions.
Last week as I was leaving work the TCS warning light illuminated on my dashboard, it was the 2nd time in less than 2 months. I
have had a 2005 Hyundai Sonata with over 187K miles and it’s timing belt should have been replaced at 120K miles. I drive 100 miles per day, every day in all types of weather, and that car has gotten me safely to work in West Chester, PA every day since 2005 with no problems.
2005 Hyundai Sonata
I drove the car directly to Middletown Car Care to be serviced and the next day anxiously waited for the diagnosis and repair cost. Fortunately, the timing belt could wait but there was another more severe problem, the engine needed replacing – long story short, she wasn’t coming back home. I must admit that the Sonata gave me more miles than expected and for that I will always be a loyal Hyundai car owner.
Not anticipating the urgent need to purchase yet another vehicle on an already tight budget, I took to Twitter to ask AAA and AARP to assist me in finding car buying savings. In 2005 I used the AAA online car buying service to purchase the Sonata and once again they came through with an immediate response. The link directed me to not only another Hyundai, but in the exact price range that we could afford and at a dealership I knew and trusted. #blessed
Less than 5 mins after completing the online contact form, I received a phone call from a friendly representative and made an appointment to see the vehicle that evening after work. My husband and son met me at Carman Ford Lincoln in New Castle where we spoke to Doug Walton, the Sales Consultant, and he along with the business manager, Bob made the purchase a pleasant and stress free experience.
After giving Doug the AAA Car Buying Certificate which contained the guaranteed, no hassle price, in less than 2 hours we were home with our new/used car with a payment that we could afford. #blessed
Thank you AAA and Carman Ford, it was by far the best car buying experience given the fact that we were totally unprepared to make this major purchase, no buyer’s remorse here!
Yes, I am sad that my car died, but feel truly blessed knowing that it could have been worse. The Sonata could have died while I was on the road traveling to or from work, in a snow storm, at night or not even having the funds to replace it.
I am truly thankful and blessed by the best!
Bye Bye 2005 Sonata – thank you – you will be missed!
Hello Accent – welcome to the family!
As always, I am thankful for my family, friends and faith.
Now it’s your turn – what are you thankful for this week?
I’m a socializing this afternoon over at Katherine’s for her weekly
Be Blessed – No Stress in 2014!
“For Women, About Women, & By Women and the Men in their lives!”
From Purses to Portfolios was a free conference presented by the Delaware Financial Literacy Institute and supported by Citi Foundation. This was the 5th year of the conference which empowers women to take charge of their financial future. Several years ago hubby and I attended a free financial program sponsored by The Money School of Delaware and the presenter was Alisha Adams, from Primerica Financial Services. She later became our financial adviser and I attended other free events, however, this was the first time at the all-day conference.
The 2012 Conference was sponsored by numerous companies including Citizens Bank, The News Journal, State Farm Insurance, United Way, Wells Fargo and others. This year’s theme was FAB – FOR women ABOUT women BY women. Women of all ages, young and old, black and white as well as more than 60 Exhibitors filled the Chase Center on the Riverfront. Some of the FAB Exhibitors included AIDS Delaware; Ardyss; Bank of America; City of Wilmington; Declutter Enterprise, LLC; Delaware Hospice; Easter Seals; Dollar Build; Garages Aux Trois; Goodwill of DE; Mary Kay; SCORE Delaware; Primerica Financial Services; Senior Helpers; Stop The Violence; Wilmington Women in Business;Tastefully Simple and YWCA DE Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship.
Arriving early Saturday morning waiting outside for the 8:30 opening, I stood in line and socialized with a variety of women all there with a common goal – to become more financially literate. Upon entering we received a program, a name badge, two tickets for lunch/beverages and a cute pink leopard print tote in exchange for completing a demographics survey form. After having a cup of coffee and muffin, I walked up and down “Women’s Biz Boulevard” checking out the vendors, filling out forms, taking pictures and exchanging business cards. Later on I met up with my girlfriends and we walked, talked, and then attended the opening session with the key note speaker Mary Caraccioli, The Money Confidante. State Treasure, Chip Flowers and New Castle County President, Tom Kovach spoke for a few minutes as did Governor Jack Markell who almost didn’t make it due to state preparations for Hurricane Sandy.
There were four seminars from which to choose for the morning and afternoon sessions. We chose, Perfect Credit:7 Steps to a Great Credit Rating. Lynnette Khalfani-Cox, a personal financial expert and a NY Times bestseller talked about credit; credit repair; credit scores; rules and regulations; how credit scores affect interest rates on loans as well as insurance rates; jobs and employment. The seminar was very informative and there was ample time for audience questions.
For perfect credit follow these 7 rules:
PULL your credit report regularly
EXAMINE your credit report carefully
REDUCE debt and manage bills wisely
FIX errors to protect your credit
ENHANCE credit file regularly
CONTACT creditors and negotiate
TAKE time educate yourself and reevaluate
For more information check out her blog at @askthemoneycoach.com
Bag lunches were provided and the choices were either a Turkey Sandwich or Vegetarian Wrap, both included a packaged cookie and apple, I chose the wrap which was fresh and delicious!
After lunch we walked “Women’s Biz Boulevard” gathering information from the FAB exhibitors, stopping to test products, enter drawings and purchase raffle tickets.
The afternoon session began at 2:00, and we chose to attend “Retirement:Never Too Early, Never Too Late” sponsored by AARP, and presented by Jean Setzfand, VP of Financial Security. I learned more about retirement funds as well as Social Security benefits and of making wise financial decisions that will affect me in my golden years. I also learned that AARP uses Linkedin to identify and promote the best companies for it’s members, currently at 152. I will definitely enroll the next time I get the application in the mail – lol!
The day ended with a Recognition Ceremony, Closing Remarks and Door Prizes which included items donated by Big Fish Grill; Brew HaHa; Citi; Delaware Art Museum; Hagley Museum; Star Nails & Spa; Trader Joe’s and WAWA as well as new Michael Kors and Coach purses provided by Mrs. Carper and First Lady Markell. None of us won a door prize, however, we did win additional knowledge that will assist in making wise financial decisions and having me think twice before purchasing that next pair of shoes!
Thank you Delaware for a great “Girlfriend Day Out” and I look forward to the 2013 Conference.