Free Tax Assistance

Need some help filing your taxes this year? The AARP Tax Aide volunteers are gearing up to provide preparation services and electronic filing of both Federal and California tax returns for folks with low and middle income. This service is free for Nevada County residents of all ages.

If you bought health insurance through Covered California and received Premium Tax Credits, you must file a return. Let AARP help! The Tax Aide group can handle most common personal tax returns, including those that have salary, interest, dividends, itemized deductions, pension, IRA withdrawals, capital gains, or stock transactions.

Tax appointments are available every Monday between February 5th and April 9th. Appointments are required. To schedule your appointment, call 211 (just dial 2-1-1 or 877-847-0499) and press 4.

Go DEEP on Diabetes

Tap into your strengths and take charge of your diabetes with DEEP, the Diabetes Empowerment Education Program.

DEEP is an evidence-based program for people with diabetes or pre-diabetes and their caregivers. This high-energy, hands-on workshop includes activities, demonstrations, role play, and games in a fun and supportive environment. Gain a better understanding of how diabetes impacts your overall health and learn about new tools and strategies to help you take control of your diabetes.

The free, six-week course includes:

Week 1: Understanding the Human Body
Week 2: Risk Factors
Week 3: Self-Monitoring
Week 4: Exercise
Week 5: Health Management through Meal Planning
Week 6: Living with Diabetes- Medications, Mobilizing Friends & Family

DEEP is offered through a partnership between Dignity Health, the Nevada County Public Health Department, and Connecting Point. For more information, call Karen Bellanti at 530-274-5601.

To register, call Karen Bellanti at 530-274-5601 or register online here.


What: DEEP Workshop
When: Thursdays, February 15 through March 22, 1:00-3:00 pm (please plan to attend all six classes)
Where: Connecting Point, 208 Sutton Way, Grass Valley (link)
Cost: Free!

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!

Lunchin’ with Leslie

Registry providers: Lunch is on us.

Join us on August 4th from 12:00 to 1:00 pm for our first ever Lunchin’ with Leslie, a monthly gathering of Registry providers to share lunch, information, and good conversation. Hosted by Home Care Coordinator Leslie Kerns every first Friday through December, Lunchin’ with Leslie is a chance to meet your fellow Registry providers, learn about changes in the IHSS program, and share information.

Come check out our new office space at 208 Sutton Way in Grass Valley and have lunch on us.

Lunch is free. Please RSVP by August 1st at 530-274-5601.


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.