Human Services Corner

A wonderful video is on the Older Adults webpage on Fairfax County website, which takes a close look of the village concept and how the model helps seniors age in place and how the village helps communities as a whole remain independent. Take a moment to watch it at:

Family Assistance -The Crisis Assistance program helps households in emergency situations by providing primary heat security deposits and funding the repair or replacement of heating equipment. The application period began Friday, November 1, 2013 and closes on Monday, March 17, 2014. For more information, click here:

The Little River Glen Senior Center in Fairfax needs volunteers to help with front desk coverage and special events. It also needs volunteer instructors for fitness, art, computer, and ESL classes. Call 703-324-5406, TTY 711, visit and link to Volunteer Solutions or email

12 Days of Giving - The chaotic shopping season is here. This year give the gift of charity. Donate to your favorite nonprofit in someone’s honor from the comfort of your home. Cross a name off your list and take a tax deduction. It’s a win-win!! As our gift to you, OP3 has compiled 12 Ways of Giving in Fairfax County.

Developmental Art & Games Group
December 16th, 2013, 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.,
Additional dates are being planned for January 2014.
Play new games, create your own art, make new friends, learn something new and challenge yourself while developing new skills in creative problem solving, attention, turn taking, social skills, team collaboration, and self-esteem. Fee & RSVP required
Contact Diane at: 703-532-3214 Ext # 118, or
Parents Of Autistic Children of Northern Virginia (POAC-NoVA) and the Autism Society of Northern Virginia’s (ASNV) Holiday Party
Saturday, December 14 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Kena Shriners Hall, 9001 Arlington Blvd, Fairfax
This is for all of our friends in the disability community. In order to avoid long lines at the mall, please join us for photo opportunities with Santa from 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Please bring a dessert or snack if you like, but it is not required. An RSVP would be GREATLY appreciated. Please RSVP by email to with the number attending. If you have any questions, please call 703 241-2640.

South Run RECenter’s Annual Breakfast with Santa
Saturday, December 14 9am, 10:30am - The jolly old elf will be available for photos, and Mrs. Claus will read stories to the children. This festive one-hour holiday program costs $12 and includes one child and one adult. The cost is $5 per additional child or adults. Kids two and younger are admitted free of charge.

Aging in Place
Wednesday, December 18, 2013
7:30 p.m. – Braddock Hall
9002 Burke Lake Road
Burke, VA 22015
Kings Park Library Building

Shepherd’s Center
Sunday, December 8, 2013 – Winter Wonderland Holiday Music Concert –Richard J.Ernst Cultural Center (NOVA)
8333 Little River Tnpk, Annandale, VA
Thursday, January 16, 2014 - Lunch N’Life –Sharon Bulova, Chairman, Board of Supervisors
St. Mary of Sorrows Catholic Church
5222 Sideburn Rd, Fairfax County 

Join Wheels to Africa for Bike Drive

Join Wheels to Africa for its 9th annual bike collection on December 14, from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. in the Pizza Hut parking lot (8708 Little River Turnpike, Fairfax, VA). Bring any size bicycle to donate. The bikes will be sent to needy communities in Africa where many must walk long distances in order to reach school, medical care, food, and water. For more information go to Wheels to Africa also kindly requests a $10 donate to help with the shipping cost for the bike.

Staying Healthy During the Holidays

 Being attentive to our health isn’t always a top priority during the holiday season, but the hustle and the stress often depletes us both physically and mentally. Here are some helpful recommendations from the American Heart Association to help keep each of us at our best throughout the festivities:

1. Control portions - Especially during the holidays, know that you’ll have more opportunities to eat festive snacks and desserts. You don’t have to deprive yourself, just eat smaller portions and less often. Perhaps start with a healthy meal or snack first.
2. Eat when you’re hungry - Just because the clock says noon doesn’t mean you have to eat. If you’re not hungry, wait until you are – just don’t wait until you’re famished because you might overeat. Also, don’t eat just because the food is available. Learn more about why you might be eating when not hungry.
3. Drink water - Sodas and other sweet drinks contain a lot of calories and many contain caffeine. For a healthier version of “soda” mix 100% fruit juice with club soda or seltzer. Drink extra water to help flush out the excess sodium you consume during rich meals.
4. Increase exercise – After big holiday meals, engage the family in a physical activity like a walk, ice skating or the dance video games.
5.Be realistic - The holidays don’t have to be perfect or just like last year. As families change and grow, traditions and rituals often change as well. Choose a few to hold on to, and be open to creating new ones. For example, if your adult children can’t come to your house, find new ways to celebrate together, such as sharing pictures, emails or videos.
6. Set aside differences - Try to accept family members and friends as they are, even if they don’t live up to all of your expectations. Set aside grievances until a more appropriate time for discussion. And be understanding if others get upset or distressed when something goes awry. Chances are they’re feeling the effects of holiday stress and depression, too.
7. Stick to a budget - Before you go gift and food shopping, decide how much money you can afford to spend, then stick to your budget. Don’t try to buy happiness with an avalanche of gifts. Try these alternatives: Donate to a charity in someone’s name, give homemade gifts or start a family gift exchange.
8. Plan ahead - Set aside specific days for shopping, baking, visiting friends and other activities. Plan your menus and then make your shopping list. That will help prevent last-minute scrambling to buy forgotten ingredients. And make sure to line up help for party prep and cleanup.
9. Learn to say no - Saying yes when you should say no can leave you feeling resentful and overwhelmed. Friends and colleagues will understand if you can’t participate in every project or activity. If it’s not possible to say no when your boss asks you to work overtime, try to remove something else from your agenda to make up for the lost time.
10. Don’t abandon healthy habits -Don’t let the holidays become a free-for-all. Overindulgence only adds to your stress and guilt. Have a healthy snack before holiday parties so that you don’t go overboard on sweets, cheese or drinks. Continue to get plenty of sleep and physical activity.
11. Take a breather - Make some time for yourself. Spending just 15 minutes alone, without distractions, may refresh you enough to handle everything you need to do. Take a walk at night and stargaze. Listen to soothing music. Find something that reduces stress by clearing your mind, slowing your breathing and restoring inner calm.

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