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      United Way offers seniors a free K.I.S.S.

      7&4 talks to Susan McQuaid from United Way about K.I.S.S.

      The United Way of Northwest Michigan is launching a new program with the help of the Grand Traverse County Commission on Aging to provide seniors living alone a way to feel safe in their house.

      The program is called K.I.S.S. and it stands for keeping independent seniors safe.

      Volunteers with the program will be assigned to seniors living across Grand Traverse County. Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday the volunteers will call to make sure the seniors are doing well. If the senior doesn't answer the phone, the volunteer will call back two more times and if no one comes to the phone, the Grand Traverse Sheriff's Office will do a wellness check. All of this is done free of charge.

      Susan McQuaid, the director of the volunteer center from the United Way of Northwest Michigan says this program helps seniors feel safe at home and helps family members know that their loved one is taken care of. McQuaid says with this program seniors can know that they are safe and that someone cares for them.

      McQuaid says right now the program is only available for those 60 years of age or older living in Grand Traverse County but she is hopeful that the program can spread to the surrounding 5 counties.

      If you want to volunteer with the program or know someone who could benefit from this service you can call the United Way at 231-947-3200 or email Susan McQuaid at susan@unitedwaynwmi.org.