Virtual Retirement Community Taps Social Capital

Today's Boston Globe article "Help Comes Home" reports on an interesting concept to help retirees live at home longer.  A Cambridge program creates a network of support to help provide both services and social companionship for seniors that can help them live independently.  This is modelled on a first-of-its-kind program in the Back Bay.

While there are other programs that provides services to seniors at home, this program is noteworthy because it emphasizes social networks for seniors, providing them with the kind of regular social activities often associated with institutional living.  It also encourages seniors to sign up to help other seniors with chores they are able to do such as grocery shopping. 

As the evidence mounts about the importance of social networks for a long and healthy life, this program seems to be an encouraging way of providing the social capital that seniors can draw upon to live independently as long as possible.