PORTSMOUTH — Senior citizens filled up the Portsmouth Welcome Center Friday for the third annual ‘Senior Day Out,’ hosted by the Social Work Association and Healthcare Alliance (SWAHA).
Susan Goins serves as president of the SWAHA. She said the event has continued to become increasingly popular each year.
“We are having our third annual Senior Day Out,” Goins said. “The first year we had about 100 people, then 300, but we have grown and this year we will probably see well over 600 people.”
They wanted to host the Senior Day Out event in place of past event called the ‘Senior Expo’ that was hosted in times past.
“Years ago the Area Agency on Aging would put on the Senior Expo, and we found that, that was kind of a loss in our community because we weren’t able to host it anymore financially. So we decided as a non-profit organization to come together and have something to put on for the seniors in our community,” Goins said.
Erica Kegley, is currently the second vice president of SWAHA, with first vice president being Cindy Stevens. Kegley said it is simply a fun day for senior citizens in the area.
“This is an all day event for our seniors. They can come in and win door prizes, enjoy live entertainment and it is just a fun day for them,” Kegley said. “We have 35 vendors here. There are health screenings and we even have live ducks this year.
Funding for the event comes through vendor participation, in which each is asked to pay a $25 vendor fee for booth space. Monies raised from the event are allocated towards a charity, according to Goins.
“What we do with all of that money is choose a charity to donate that money to at the end of the year around Christmas time,” Goins said. “Last year we gave money to the Volunteer Guardianship Program that we are trying to get off of the ground. The year before we gave it to Children’s Services for their Christmas party.
Goins said it is a possibility that they will donate the proceeds from this year’s Senior Day to the Volunteer Guardianship Program again.
“We will probably go with the Volunteer Guardianship Program, since we are trying to get that going,” Goins said. “It is quite expensive, we have seniors who are indigent and cannot afford for someone to be their guardian, and need help paying those fees.”
Reach Portia Williams at 740-353-3101, ext. 1929, or on Twitter @PortiaWillPDT.