Family Centers' Friendly Connections program was recently chosen as one of eight organizations to be featured in a national case study report sanctioned by the Alliance for Children and Families.

The report, Impact and Innovation: Effective Models and Practices in Serving Older Adults, was produced as part of the Alliance's five-year New Age of Aging initiative. The New Age of Aging is designed to help prepare nonprofit human service organizations throughout North America to best provide services for older adults as the vast baby boom generation ages. The multi-million dollar initiative is funded by The Atlantic Philanthropies. All organizations featured in the report are members of the alliance.

"Collectively, the eight replicable programs demonstrate community need and impact, innovation, attention to diverse populations and collaboration," said Jonette N. Arms, director of the Alliance's New Age of Aging. "Individually, programs like Friendly Connections are on the cutting-edge, positively making a difference for older adults in the community."

Impact and Innovation: Effective Models and Practices in Serving Older Adults is designed to help readers identify potential gerontological human service and social work practice models, demonstrate strength-based practices, and offer insights into the expertise and resourcefulness of Alliance member organizations.

Friendly Connections offers comprehensive support and wellness services to seniors living in Fairfield County. Its Friendly Callers component connects isolated seniors with community volunteers, who make weekly phone calls and provide much-needed support and companionship. Meanwhile, the Friendly Visitors program matches homebound seniors with a volunteer who visits their home on a weekly basis. Friendly Visitors is operated in partnership with the Greenwich Department of Social Services.

The Alliance for Children and Families, which will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2011, is a national membership association of nonprofit human service providers in the United States and Canada. The Alliance strengthens the capacities of North America's nonprofit child- and family-serving organizations to serve and advocate for children, families and communities. The more than 330 members of the alliance provide an array of community-based programs and services to all generations, serving close to 3.4 million people each year. More information about the alliance is available at alliance1.org.

To view the report, go to www.newageofaging.org. For more information about the New Age of Aging initiative, contact Jonette N. Arms, director, at jarms@alliance1.org or 800-221-3726, ext. 6523.

Family Centers is a private, nonprofit organization offering education and human services to children, adults and families in Fairfield County. More than 1000 professionals and trained volunteers work together to provide a wide range of responsive, innovative programs. A United Way and Community Fund of Darien partner agency, Family Centers is a member of the Connecticut Council of Family Service Agencies and the Alliance for Children and Families. The agency is licensed by the State of Connecticut Department of Public Health. Visit www.familycenters.org for additional information.