Worcester Elder Affairs/Senior Center Helps Launch MY VOICE, MY CHOICE

We were delighted to collaborate with Amy Waters, Executive Director, Worcester Elder Affairs/Senior Center, an Honoring Choices Community Partner, to bring you the diverse voices of Massachusetts adults sharing their personal stories as they navigate their own health care planning journeys.

Last August, the Worcester Senior Center’s Multi-Cultural Committee invited adults in their community to lend their voices to help us launch the My Voice, My Choice web page, a part of the Honoring Choices Everyone, Everyday statewide campaign. A professional photography crew was engaged to capture in video the personal stories of adults talking about the importance of making a plan using Massachusetts planning documents. We hoped to make 7 multi-lingual, multi-cultural videos at the Worcester Senior Center, but due to the heartfelt enthusiasm of many in the community, we recorded 14 videos in one day! Each of the multi-lingual videos are accompanied by a translated Health Care Proxy on the My Voice, My Choice web page.

This past week, Honoring Choices held a “Who’s Your Agent? Workshop” at the Worcester Senior Center to debut the videos and 10 Health Care Proxies, downloadable in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Russian, Vietnamese, Khmer, Arabic, Albanian and Haitian-Creole.  All seniors from the Worcester community attended, including the Vietnamese, Arabic and Chinese Senior Groups, to watch the videos and complete a Health Care Proxy in the language of their choice.

It was a wonderfully collaborative effort to launch the collective, diverse voices of Massachusetts adults sharing their personal journeys and empowering others to make a health care plan.

We want to thank everyone at the Worcester Senior Center for their dedication and time in launching this unique and important initiative with a special thanks to the project leaders, Yung Pham, Linda Moore, and Suki Lapis. Thanks also to our Community Partners & friends who supported the project: The Hudson Council on Aging, Joanne Calista, Executive Director, Center for Health Impact, VCare Medical Hospice and Group Adult Foster Care Program and Good Shepherd Community Care.

Many thanks to Tom Robertson, Director of Photography, Stephen Hussar, Gaffer and Jason Mangini, Sound, an incredible crew who expertly worked to capture each person’s individual story, and to Patrick Gaspar, PG Cuts for his creative editing and post production to bring their stories to life.

Thanks to the generous grant from  Tufts Health Plan Foundation, supporting the Honoring Choices Ambassador Program, to elevate the expertise of seniors to start peer-to-peer health care planning discussions where adults live, work and gather, and within your own language, culture and ability.

Most importantly our thanks to all those who shared their stories in hopes of empowering others in their community  to make a health care plan.