New Home Care Class Schedule

Our new 2017/2018 Home Care training schedule for Nevada County should be hitting your mailbox this week. We’re excited to have a great lineup of classes again this year, with practical trainings like Universal Precautions and much-needed stress management classes like Practicing Peace.

For a full list of upcoming trainings with class descriptions, check out our Schedule of Classes.

Register for classes by calling Karen Bellanti at 274-5601 or on our Events page. All classes are FREE for IHSS consumers and providers.

We hope to see you here!

Go DEEP on Diabetes

Tap into your strengths and take charge of your diabetes. 

Connecting Point is partnering with Dignity Health to offer a free six-week Diabetes Self-Management workshop. The Diabetes Empowerment Education Program (DEEP) focuses on how diabetes impacts your quality of life and encourages lifestyle changes to help you better manage your diabetes.

Learn about self-care and symptom management and how to make choices that lead to better health. The workshop includes an overview of associated illnesses and prevention of symptoms such as high blood pressure, circulatory challenges, kidney issues, depression, foot care, and dental care.

The workshop will be held at the Connecting Point office on Thursdays from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm, July 13th through August 17th. Classes are free and open to adults with diabetes or pre-diabetes and their caregivers. Call 211 (or 877-847-0499) to register.

Check out the flyer for more information.

Senior Stays Connected with Gold Country Stage

Margaret Burlew (with her bus pass around her neck) stands ready to board the Gold Country Stage.

When Margaret Burlew’s husband passed away in 2007, she found herself isolated, lonely, and no longer able to afford the gas to get around town in her car.

That’s when she headed back to the bus.

It wasn’t Margaret’s first time using public transportation to get around. She actually started riding the bus when she was eight years old. Each weekday, Margaret took the Grass Valley-Nevada City Bus Line—a private bus that ran between Grass Valley and Nevada City from 1922 to 1963—to school from her home at Mill Street and McCourtney Road. “The school bus wouldn’t stop there. They stopped on the top of the hill,” Margaret told me recently. The Grass Valley-Nevada City Bus Line, on the other hand, stopped right in front of her house. Back then, “it cost a quarter to ride to Nevada City,” Margaret recalls.

As an adult, Margaret moved to Southern California and learned to drive on the Ventura Freeway. Her bus-riding days were behind her. But when she found herself on her own in Nevada County, the bus made better financial sense. “It’s very affordable for seniors,” she said. Margaret’s monthly pass costs her $22.50 and takes her everywhere she wants to go, including to her health care at Western Sierra Medical Clinic. “They take you right up to the door,” she says. “Right up to the front door. What better service than that would you want?”

Margaret takes the Gold Country Stage every day, going to the post office, doing her shopping, and riding around and socializing with people. It’s her way of staying active as she ages. “I used to work in a convalescent hospital as a CNA, and they said ‘if you don’t use it, you lose it.’ You’ve got to keep going. After my husband died, all I did was stay home and cry. Every day I’d stay home and cry because I was lonely. Well, I’m still lonely, but I take the bus every day and that helps my loneliness.”

A huge advocate for our public transportation system, Margaret can tell you all of the interesting places you can get to by bus (ask her about her trip to Reno sometime). When I asked Margaret what her favorite destination is she said “I just like to ride. Period.”

Margaret’s knowledge of the Gold Country Stage bus system is extensive, but she wasn’t always an expert. “I needed a little help at first,” she said. “But now I can help others.” She added: “We’ve got lovely bus drivers. They’re very accommodating and very helpful to people.”

Talking to Margaret, you get the sense that she has always been fiercely independent. For her, the bus is a means of connecting to the community and to others. And it’s one she’s not going to give up anytime soon. “About two years ago, I had emergency surgery. I had a hernia. Oh, I was in such pain. They operated on me on Monday, I came home Tuesday, I went on the bus Wednesday, and I’ve been out ever since!”


Thank you to Margaret Munson of the Nevada County Historical Society for assistance with research on this article.

Age Out Loud for Older Americans Month

May is Older Americans Month (OAM), and Connecting Point is teaming up with Nevada County Adult Services to celebrate aging in Nevada County. The theme for this year’s OAM is Age Out Loud, and what better place to do that than here in this beautiful, lively community where over 30% of the population is over 60.

Nevada County residents age 60 and over own businesses, serve as elected officials, work in city and county government, operate and volunteer for nonprofit organizations, and contribute to the vibrant cultural life of our community. Over the next few weeks we will be sharing their secrets for staying active, independent, and engaged as you Age Out Loud.

Share Your Story

Tell us how you Age Out Loud in Nevada County. Upload a selfie or a short video to your Facebook page and let the world know what Aging Out Loud means to you. Use the hashtag #OAM17 and don’t forget to tag Connecting Point (connectingpointca), so we can see you.

Here are some signs to get you started:

Age Out Loud Because Sign

Age Out Loud By Sign

Practice Peace with Upcoming Stress Management Class

Are you feeling anxious, agitated, tired, irritable, depressed, angry, or sad? All of the above? Okay, you seem a little stressed . . .

The symptoms of stress can affect both your physical and mental health and have a real impact on how you think, feel, and act. Learning to see the signs of stress and having clear strategies for limiting its effects can help you to live a much healthier, happier life.

Practicing Peace: Stress Management for Life is a 4-week class designed to help you minimize the emotional and physical effects of stress and create a more peaceful approach to your current challenges. Taught by Marge Kaiser, this highly-rated class will teach participants how to overcome stress through humor, relaxation, self-care, and group support.

The free class, hosted by Connecting Point, begins May 4th and meets every Thursday through May 25th. It’s open to all Nevada County residents who need some support, strategies, and a good laugh.


What: Practicing Peace: Stress Management for Life

When: Thursdays, May 4th, 11th, 18th, and 25th, 2:30-4:30 pm

Where: Connecting Point
208 Sutton Way, Grass Valley

Cost: Free! Space is limited.

Eventbrite - Practicing Peace: Stress Management for Life


Connecting Point offers free caregiver training to community-members. All classes
are free for Nevada County residents. The slate of classes includes practical training in caregiving skills, such as lifting and transferring, universal precautions, and dementia care as well as self-care classes for caregivers.

4 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day

April 22nd is Earth Day. Here are a few ideas for how you can celebrate our home planet while helping to protect our air, soil, and waterways.

  1. Ditch your car. Gold Country Stage is offering free fares on all routes April 21st and 22nd. Find bus schedules and routes here or call 211 for help planning your trip. Funded through the Low Carbon Transit Operations Program (LCTOP).
  2. Volunteer for SYRCL’s Pioneer Park Cleanup. The South Yuba River Citizen’s League (SYRCL) is celebrating Earth Day by hosting a cleanup at Pioneer Park on April 22nd, from 9 am to 12 pm. Help keep our waterways clean by removing debris from Little Deer Creek.
  3. Recycle your batteries and electronic waste. If you have curbside service, you can recycle your household batteries by placing them in a sealed plastic bag on top of your recycling cart on collection day. We also have several drop-off sites in Western Nevada County. See the full list here. You can also recycle anything that plugs in at the McCourtney Road Transfer Station.
  4. Gather together, get involved. Check out the Earth Day celebrations at Sierra College Nevada County Campus (April 20th) and the Village at Squaw Valley (April 22nd) to listen to live music, see demonstrations, and learn how you can help protect the Earth.