Combat Social Isolation

Erie County Senior Services hopes you stay safe and healthy during this pandemic! 

Combating Social Isolation is something we take very seriously, so we have compiled a list of resources and activities that can keep you engaged while you are home.  Be sure to check back for new additions!

Combating Social Isolation Press Release 2/1/2021


Department Resources

 

Nutrition Education - Videos from our Registered Dietitians on nutrition and healthy eating.

Wellness - Looking to stay active? Visit our Wellness page to view fitness videos.

University Express - View some of the University Express online!

Aging Mastery - Would you like to start focusing on some positive behaviors that will allow you to address the new realities of aging? Click the link to learn about the Aging Mastery take-home starter kit! 

Falls Prevention - Learn some tips to stay safe in your home by strengthening muscles and making your home more accessible.


 

More things you can do at home to stimulate your mind and combat boredom:


Crafts  

Fave Crafts- Best crafts for seniors!                    

The Spruce Crafts- Learn how to crochet for beginners!

Origami- Simple origami folding instructions.

Winter Videos- Step by step paiting with Tracie Kiernan.

Modge Podge Rocks Blog- Easy crafts for adults!

Mum in the Mad House- Ideas for using felt scraps!

Crafts for Seniors - Looking for an inventive and enjoyable way to spend your free time? Check out this extensive list of crafts for seniors.

Caring Cards for Seniors with Oasis Senior Advisors - Interested in making cards for seniors stuck at home in Erie County? Call Matt 717-3664 or email mgardiner@youroasisadvisor.com to volunteer.

Good Housekeeping Craft Projects - Good Housekeeping will walk you through fun craft projects using items you can find in your house! Their videos will be posted to their Facebook page.

Information on how to make a no-sew face mask


Driving/Cars  

Buffalo Spree Magazine- Check out this great article!

Hemmings Stories- American collector cars of all time.

Car Article- The best cars for senior drivers.

Peterson Automotive Museum- Tour of the entire museum!

Henry Ford Museum- Articles from the Henry Ford Museum.

Corvette Museum- Read up on the Corvette: an American classic. History, specs, and more!

LeMay America's Car Museum- If Cars Could Talk: Adult Lecture Series.

Lane Motor Museum- View their collection of cars, motorcycles, planes, and more.

Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum- Racing sports cars collections. Browse their collection and learn about each car in great detail.

Mullin Automotive Museum- The collection pays homage to the Art Deco and Machine Age eras.

Ferrari- Ferrari Museum Tour!

Ferrari- History of Ferrari racing cars.

General Motors Heritage Center- View their collection of cars and learn about each car.


Education  

Environmental Health Study for WNY Community Workshops- View educational videos about health and environmental health topics brought to you by the Environmental Health Study for WNY and University at Buffalo. 

Coursera- Online courses from worldclass companies and universities - free to join.

Road Scholar- Join Road Scholar for virtual lectures and adventures. Lectures in the their “Virtual Lecture Library” are free.

DuolingoLearn a new language free of charge!

Ted TalksThese seminar type videos come in a range of topics. Listen to thousands of talks by experts. You are sure to find something interesting!

List of Museums, Parks, Zoos around the world offering virtual tours- Take a tour of the world's most popular attractions right from your home!

Senior Tech ClubThis site helps older adults navigate computers, smart phones, and social media. It's a great time to learn!

Senior Planet- Check out virtual classes and articles. You can even receive tech help!

National Geographic Explorer Classroom- Explorer Classroom’s live video events connect you with National Geographic Explorers across all seven continents to bring exploration to life.

Academic Earth- View free online courses from some of America’s best Universities.

The Hidden Worlds of National Parks- Enjoy a 360-degree tour of five of America’s National Parks thanks to Google Arts and Culture.

Virtual NYC- Explore the virtual NYC website and find the best online experiences in the five boroughs.

edX- Find high quality online classes from top universities around the world.

Smithsonian Learning Lab- Enjoy this interactive platform and discover all the Smithsonian has to offer virtually.

Buffalo and Erie County Library- The library has downloadable content (ebooks, audiobooks, videos)! Info on how to download here. Update: Some locations may be open or offer other options to pick up materials.

Buffalo and Erie County Library by Mail- The Library by Mail program, sponsored by a grant, is GREAT for seniors and shut-ins – providing them the opportunity to obtain library materials during these challenging times.  There is NO fee/cost to join or participate in this program. Here is the online application!

Coronavirus-19 CDC- Here are some helpful ways provided by the CDC to cope with our anxiety through this troubling time!


Entertainment  

National Comedy Center Anywhere- Featuring exclusive comedy content direct from the exhibits of the National Comedy Center, the nation’s official cultural institution dedicated to the art of comedy, located in Jamestown, New York.

Aquarium of Niagara- Our aquarium offers a range of experiences from animal encounters, birthday parties, to animal training, we offer adventures that entertain and educate.

Jigsaw Puzzles- Have some fun playing online with puzzles!

Pogo Free Games- Free online games!

Facebook- Connect with friends and family over the internet.

The Food Network- Love Food Network shows, chefs and recipes? Find the best recipe ideas, videos, healthy eating advice, party ideas and cooking techniques from top chefs.

The Travel Channel- Check out travel videos, shows, and guides on top travel destinations on Travel Channel. Get all tips, show updates, and trip ideas here.


Gardening  

National Agricultural Library's Plants and Crops SectionThis Library houses one of the largest collections devoted to agriculture and its related sciences. Start exploring!

Learn, Garden & Reflect with Cornell Garden Based Learning- You can access all kinds of information on garden guidance and citizen science here.

The Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) of Erie County Master Gardener Program- Learn about what a Master Gardener does and access a wealth of gardening information.

Buffalo-Niagara Gardening- Peruse gardening tips, learn about shrubs, and become inspired to create beautiful floral arrangements here. 

Design a Successful Indoor Garden- How-to for indoor gardening- explains in detail different types of indoor gardening options.

Simple Indoor Gardening Activities- Cute and crafty indoor garden ideas!

DIY Indoor Garden Tips Article- Nice article on growing indoor plants.

Top Indoor Growing Ideas- Great resource to keep you busy this winter and for indoor growing!


History  

The Buffalo Presidential Center- The Buffalo Presidential Center aims to educate the community about the rich presidential history that exists here.

History Channel - This Day in History- A look at major events that happened on certain dates. Check out what happened in history today!

Library of Congress- Check out all of the information the Library of Congress has to offer.

National Archives- Search for and view valuable documents and materials from the United States Federal Government.

Grosvenor Room Genealogy & Local History- For videos and information about genealogy research and local history research, click here to be taken to the Grosvenor Room blog.

Presidents of the U.S.Click here for information such as museums, virtual tours, volunteering, exhibits, etc. from the Presidents of the United States!

American Revolutionary War (1775-1783)- Explore the role upstate New York played in the Revolutionary War by virtually visiting Fort Stanwix (known as the fort that never surrendered) in Rome, New York.

War of 1812 (1812-1815)- Learn more about The Battle of Lake Erie, the first unqualified defeat of a British Naval squadron in history.

American Civil War (1861-1865)- Western New York plays an especially significant role in the Civil War through Ely Parker, a member of the Seneca Nation, who is buried at Forest Lawn Cemetery. Find out more about his contribution at the Appomattox Court House surrender and make time to visit his grave. 

Spanish American War (1898)- Become acquainted with one of the most famous cavalry units in US history, the Rough Riders, led by future President Teddy Roosevelt, by watching this brief PBS video. 

World War I (1914-1918)- The Buffalo & Erie County Public Library has a substantial collection of WWI posters available online to view--make sure to look out for the "Buffalo Will See It Through" poster!

World War II (1939-1945)-  Born in Buffalo, WWII Medal of Honor recipient Matt Urban is one of Buffalo's greatest sons and one of the most decorated soldier in US military history. Visit his Wikipedia page to get to know this incredible soldier.

Korean War (1950-1953)- Many Americans have learned about the Korean War through MASH, and this New Yorker article provides an interesting look at that legacy.

Vietnam War(1955-1975)- A conversation between two Vietnam Veterans, Tim O'Brien and Karl Marlantes, provides insight into both the war and how people process trauma. 

Gulf War (1990-1991)- This article provides an interesting look at Super Bowl XXV and how the Gulf War factored into it almost not happening.


Local Attractions  

The Buffalo Zoo- The Buffalo Zoo’s YouTube channel features plenty of fascinating behind-the-scenes glimpses of the Zoo and its residents, including this introduction to the new naked mole-rat colony!

Locust Street Neighborhood Art Classes- With free Saturday classes coming to an end for the winter session, all of Locust Street Neighborhood Art’s classes are on their YouTube channel—including sculpture, charcoal still life, pointillism, embroidery, painting with coffee, and more!

Buffalo History Museum- Enjoy collection highlights in categories including Buffalo sports, entertainment, the Erie Canal, Pan-American Exposition, and many other Buffalo and Erie County based objects! 

Irish Classical Theatre Company- The Irish Classical Theatre Company has put together Celtic Collections, what they call an “inspiring, informative, and free series of virtual experiences”, which can be enjoyed via YouTube and include videos covering all aspects of theater. 

Pierce-Arrow Museum- The Buffalo Transportation Pierce-Arrow Museum was born of a lifelong passion co-founder Jim Sandoro has had for the Pierce-Arrow Company. The museum is a unique collection meant to educate and draw attention to the quality automobiles produced here in Buffalo throughout the years.


Military  

WWII Memorial- Take a virtual tour of the National World War II Memorial led by Tom Hanks without leaving your living room!

Vietnam Veterans Memorial- Learn more about the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and the elements that make up the memorial in this virtual tour.

Imperial War Museums- Travel overseas to visit the incredible collection of the Imperial War Museum in London—their Sound Archive holds over 33,000 recordings relating to conflict since 1914.

National Museum of the United States Army- The largest branch of the military has a museum to match, with many online exhibits available for your enjoyment—of particular note are the Soldier’s Stories, featuring men and women from every era of United States history.

National Museum of the US Navy- Explore virtual exhibits at the National Museum of the US Navy, including Covert Submarine Operations and Undersea Exploration.

National Naval Aviation Museum- While you may not be in Pensacola, Florida, you can enjoy an incredible virtual tour of the National Naval Aviation Museum, including cockpit views from historic aircraft!

National Museum of the Marine Corps- Most of the exhibits at this Triangle, Virginia based museum are available in incredibly detailed, narrated virtual tours.

U.S. Air Force National Museum- With lots of virtual options, the U.S. Air Force National Museum provides virtual tours, detailed cockpit images, podcasts, and videos!

National Coast Guard Museum- Learn more about the National Coast Guard Museum, a project still underway to tell the story of the only branch of the United States military not to have its own national museum.

American Battlefield Trust- Experience the Revolutionary War and the Civil War by visiting battlefields in stunning panoramic views, while also being directed to supplemental material including in-depth articles and videos.

Museum of the American Revolution- Visit Philadelphia’s Museum of the American Revolution through virtual tours of all their exhibits, which offer impressive zoom capabilities on individual artifacts!

The National WWI Museum and Memorial- Visit online exhibitions from The National WWI Museum and Memorial, including a narrated immersive tour of the Museum’s trench displays and The Christmas Truce of 1914. 

National Guard Memorial Museum- Visit a museum dedicated to the National Guard through a virtual tour, including photos, audio, and text.

New York State Military Museum and Veterans Research Center- Explore the resources available through the New York State Military Museum and Veterans Research Center, including a substantial collection of Civil War information and flags.

US Army Corps of Engineers- This shows all the projects being done in our area/ WNY. The Army Corps of Engineers began surveying and mapping the land here in WNY after the war of 1812. As the amount of work accumulated, a permanent district office was established in Buffalo in 1857. The mission is to study the land, make the best use of it, prevent flooding, preserve the environment in the best way possible. In 1854, President Monroe signed the first Rivers and Harbors Act which has restored, protected and developed our waterways. Today, the Buffalo District continues to maintain and develop the land and waterways in our community but reaches other communities nationally and globally.

US CoastgaurdAs the name indicates, the US Coastguard serves to protect our shoreline as we are located on a body of water which divides the United States and Canada. The main functions of the Coast Guard are Homeland Security, Search and Rescue, Law Enforcement and Ice Rescue. Check out the link to learn more about our 9th District Coast Guard office right here in downtown Buffalo!

NY Air National GuardThe New York Air National Guard and its flying units: the 105th Airlift Wing, 106th Rescue Wing, 107th Attack Wing, 109th Airlift Wing and the 174th Attack Wing.

107 attack wing of the Air National Guard- Based out of Niagara Falls, NY! Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station, Niagara Falls, New York is our local base for the 107th Attack Wing. This is our local Air National Guard.

National GuardHistory of the National Guard. The first militia regiments in North America began in Massachusetts in 1636. These became known as the National Guard.

National Guard NY- Some history! Buffalo is the 42ID unit which reports to the 42nd Infantry Division in Troy, NY. New York State’s division was formed in Long Island in 1917.

Space Force- History of the US Space Force. The United States Space Force has gone through many changes through the years, most often in response to what services were needed in the world at that time. It has even had a change in official title, which was just changed back in 2019. Also included are some Space Force FAQ's and Space Force Fact Sheets!

Buffalo Naval ParkBuffalo is lucky to be home to the largest inland Navel & Military Park in the country. In 1977 the US Navy donated two decommissioned ships and in 1979 The Buffalo & Erie County Navel & Military Park opened to the public. 


Miscellaneous  

Buffalo and Erie County Library- The library has downloadable content (ebooks, audiobooks, videos)! Info on how to download here. Update: Some locations may be open or offer other options to pick up materials.

Buffalo and Erie County Library by Mail- The Library by Mail program, sponsored by a grant, is GREAT for seniors and shut-ins – providing them the opportunity to obtain library materials during these challenging times.  There is NO fee/cost to join or participate in this program. Here is the online application!

WNED Local Productions- WNED uploaded all of their local original specials online.

Old Fort Niagara Educational Events Online- Old Fort Niagara will continue to offer live, interactive, distance-learning programs during the month of June. Six unique sessions will share important information about Fort Niagara’s military history, from the early 1700s to World War One, on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 10:00 a.m. 

YMCA Buffalo Niagara- Their website gives you access to a variety of activities; exercise classes, crafts, nutrition information, recipes and more!

PD Health @ Home- The Parkinson's Foundation is dedicated to bringing you virtual educational and wellness programs through PD Health @ Home. 

Tai Chi for Seniors- Improve your physical and mental health with this gentle form of exercise.

Satsang House - Free Live Meditation Classes- Online meditation and mindfulness resources.


Music  

Jazz at the Lincoln Center- Portal to the Lincoln Center's concerts, discussions, and programming!

Buffalo Jazz Club- Learn about upcoming events, look at their photo gallery, and listen to some great music!

Elvis- Learn about Elvis Presley on his official website and listen to playlists of his music.

About ElvisLearn about Elvis Aaron Presley, including his biography, childhood, little-known facts, and more, straight from Graceland, his private estate.

Elton JohnThe official website of Elton John, featuring tour dates, stories, interviews, pictures, exclusive merch and more.

The Beatles- Explore albums, songs, pictures, and stories about The Beatles!

Bruce Springsteen- Learn some more about Bruce Springsteen, music and upcoming events.

Queen- Shop, get to know the band, listen to music and their podcast!

Pink Floyd- Their is music, history, streaming and a store!

JourneyJourney's official website for fan news, tour schedules, and anything Journey!

Jack FM- Listen live on the radio, the best classic rock in Buffalo, New York!


Online Volunteering  

Wildwatch Kenya- Identify animals and their behaviors in photographs to help scientists understand biodiversity in Kenya.

Smithsonian- Transcribe or review transcriptions od documents that are important to American History!


Parks  

National Park Service- With hundreds of options, the U.S. National Park Service webcams are an amazing way to get a live view of wildlife and beautiful scenery at sites ranging from Glacier National Park to Acadia National Park (personal favorites include Lake McDonald-1 at Glacier National Park and Davis Bayou at Gulf Islands National Seashore).

Kenai Fjords National ParkExplore glaciers, fjords, and lagoons alongside a Park Ranger and experience ruggedness that is accessible to very few people!

Hawai'l Volcanoes National ParkYou’ll get to see the Nahuku Lava Tube, fly over an active volcano, and see the effects of a 1959 eruption in this up-close virtual tour.

Carlsbad Caverns National ParkIf you are claustrophobic, this virtual tour may be as close as you want to get to the Carlsbad Caverns, getting a bat’s eye view of these incredible natural caves.

Bryce Canyon National ParkCentered on the aptly named Sunset Point, this virtual tour lets you enjoy the star-filled night sky this Dark Sky certified national park offers.

Dry Tortugas National ParkYou won’t need a seaplane or boat to visit Dry Tortugas National Park through this virtual tour, where you can visit Civil War-era Fort Jefferson, swim through the 3rd largest coral reef in the world, and take a dive into a 1907 shipwreck.

Virtual tour of US National parks from Google Earth - Take a tour of one of America's National Parks right from your home!

Erie County Parks, Recreation and ForestryThe Erie County Parks system is considered one of the finest in the entire state. Check out the list of parks in our County.

State Parks in the Niagara RegionWe are fortunate to have 18 State Parks in the Niagara Region. Click the link to view the list and plan your trip. This website is super neat because people can visit here (https://parks.ny.gov/parks/) and search by park name, location or amenity!


Sports  

NHL- Virtual tales of the cup video stories, Wayne Gretzky and Gordie Howe tribute, Legends spotlight, etc.

MLB- Ask the expert and become a virtual volunteer!

NFL- Pro Football!

MLS- Watch the tour and explore the website!

Tennis- News tournaments, scores, videos, players and players rankings!

PGA- News, lifestyle, gear, instructional videos/podcasts, and leaderboard.

Nascar- Learn about drivers, historic results, silly season tracker, shop, schedule, race results, and news.

Pickleball- What is Pickleball? Introduction to pickleball, history of Pickleball and learn how to play!

NBA- Watch games, standings, news, and players!

BasketballWebsite Covers Multiple Leagues: NBA, ABA,WNBA,G-League, In addition the website covers Top International players, NBA teams, seasons, awards and statistics.

 

 

Vaccine for Seniors through Pharmacies  

Rite Aid 

Wegmans

CVS

Walgreens

Tops


 Other Helpful Services:

If you find yourself in a dangerous situation, call 911 or the NYS Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-942-6906 or Text 844-997-2121 https://opdv.ny.gov/

Crisis Services (716)834-3131

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline - 1-800-273-8255

24 Hour Addiction Hotline - 716-831-7007

Erie County Adult Behavioral Health System of Care Map


Compeer- Compeer recruits, screens, and matches trained volunteers and mentors in one-to-one supportive friendship relationships with children, adults, military veterans and seniors who are striving for good mental health.

Telephone Assurance Program (Catholic Charities)- The Telephone Assurance Program (TAP) is a free volunteer service for Erie County residents providing regular telephone calls to homebound and disabled persons age 60 and older to check on their well-being. The program also offers the opportunity to socialize by telephone with a caring volunteer.

Alzheimer's Foundation of America- Their helpline is open with its normal hours of operation (9 am - 9 pm ET on weekdays, 9 am - 3 pm ET on weekends). Connect with a licensed social worker by calling 866-232-8484, or by clicking on the blue & white chat icon in the bottom right-hand corner of the page or by sending a text message to 646-586-5283 (the web chat and text chat accepts conversations in more than 90 languages). 

Alzheimer's Association of WNY- Their 24/7 Helpline is available at 800-272-3900. They're are also hosting free, live, programs such as support groups, and education programs. Call the helpline or click the link to find out more!

Supporting Family Caregivers of Older Adults Through Times of Stress and Isolation Resource Guide- A list of helpful organizations and helplines for caregivers of older adults.

Dept. of Mental Health Resources- During this time, in addition to the care of our physical health we want to stress the importance of taking care of our mental health. The uncertainty of COVID-19 is causing heightened anxiety and fear for all of us. You are not alone!

Contact

 

Phone: (716) 858-8526

Erie County Department of Senior Services
95 Franklin Street, 13th Floor
Buffalo, New York 14202

Office Hours: Monday-Friday 8:30am - 5:00pm
Phone Hours: Monday-Friday 8:30am - 4:30pm