The City of Nampa and Nampa Family Justice Center join communities around the world to promote National Elder Abuse Awareness Month in June. On Friday, June 23, the Nampa Family Justice Center is hosting its second annual “Lean on Me” walk to bring awareness and prevention of elder abuse. The community is invited to participate in a half-mile walk by wearing purple. The walk will start at 10:00 a.m. at the Nampa Family Justice Center, located at 1305 3rd St. S., and proceed to Lloyd Square where there will be a free hot dog lunch, music and resource booths. During the month of June, in addition to the walk, the Nampa Family Justice Center will share a variety of social media posts with information, stories, and resources on elder abuse awareness.
According to the National Council on Aging, approximately one in ten Americans aged 60 and over experience some form of elder abuse. As many as five million elders are abused each year. The cost of financial exploitation of elders goes far beyond the money loss, which the U.S. Department of Justice estimates to be $36.5 billion lost each year. Financial exploitation triples the risk of premature death for elders with increased depression, nursing home and hospital admissions. Fewer than one in 24 cases ever get reported.
Since 2012, the Nampa Family Justice Center has been serving victims of elder abuse and financial exploitation. Alyssa Groen, the Elder Program Coordinator for the Nampa Family Justice Center who will also speak at the June 23 event, shared, “Our mission at the Nampa Family Justice Center is to promote safety, self-sufficiency, hope and healing to those affected by abuse. One way we do this is by advocating for elders who often endure abuse in silence, thinking that no one would believe them. In most of the elder abuse cases that we help with, the abuser is someone the older adult knows and there is an ongoing relationship with an expectation of trust (sons, daughters, grandchildren, etc.). Similar to domestic violence, elder abuse is centered around power and control, where one person uses abusive behavior, threats, and manipulation to gain control over another person. By advocating for elder abuse victims and bringing awareness to the elder abuse happening in our community, we restore the dignity voice and independence that has been taken away and give them hope for their future. It is so important that we shed light on this topic and educate our community to not only recognize elder abuse, but to do something about it.”
We invite the community to participate in the monthly activities to help promote elder abuse awareness, wear purple for World Elder Abuse Awareness Day on June 15 and join us on the “Lean on Me” walk June 23 at 10:00 a.m. to show concern and care for the elderly in our community.