By Nicole Long, MSW, LICSW,  

CEO of Old Colony Elder Services

Disability Pride Month, celebrated every July, commemorates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of July 1990 that extended civil rights protections to people with disabilities. It is a time to celebrate people with disabilities and honor the history and achievements of the disability community.

Old Colony Elder Services (OCES) supports the independence of older adults and people with disabilities to thrive in their own homes and in the community.

Maintaining independence with in-home & community-based services

OCES is the largest provider of in-home and community-based services for older adults and people living with disabilities in the southeastern part of Massachusetts. Our agency offers significant life-supporting care that enables individuals to live within the community as independently as possible, for as long as possible, while preserving dignity and quality of life. 

Below are just a few ways that OCES helps people with disabilities and older adults maintain their independence:

Nutrition services. OCES offers home-delivered meals (“Meals on Wheels”) to people who are unable to shop for groceries or prepare their own meals. A delicious, nutritious meal is delivered to their homes Monday through Friday. The OCES monthly menu is planned by a registered dietitian and includes medically tailored meals, with a doctor’s approval, and meals for those who have special diets. Having daily meals delivered provides an essential connection to the community while also serving as a safety check.

Home-based care services. Home-based care, otherwise known as “homecare services” help people remain safe and independent at home by helping them accomplish activities of daily living such as bathing, dressing, light housekeeping, assistance with laundry, grocery shopping, and light meal preparation. Whether for short-term or ongoing needs, homecare encompasses a wide range of supports that may be provided in an individual’s own home, in elder housing, or private apartment.

Homecare options include, but are not limited to, care management, personal care, homemaking, and transition support upon discharge from hospital or nursing facility. Transportation coordination for medical appointments and procedures is also part of homecare services. In addition to nutrition and homecare services, OCES offers adult family care, family caregiver support, behavioral health, options counseling, and community housing programs.

Looking for specific information or assistance? Unsure of whom to contact with questions? OCES’s information and referral department is the entry point to guide individuals through their options. Our team will gather information, assess needs, and review services that are available.

Community connections

There are many older adults and people with disabilities who live alone and continue to live independently in the community. Staying engaged and connected is important when it comes to maintaining well-being and independence. Keeping in touch with friends, family, and neighbors is important. Engaging in activities and attending community events are opportunities for socializing that also provide a sense of belonging.

OCES is dedicated to removing barriers and creating equity for all by empowering individuals and communities to thrive, age in place, and reach their highest potential. OCES supports everyone without exception!

If you need assistance, contact OCES at 508-584-1561 or visit our website to learn more

About the Author: Nicole Long is the Chief Executive Officer of Old Colony Elder Services (OCES). Founded in 1974, OCES is a private, non-profit organization proudly serving greater Plymouth County and surrounding communities. OCES is designated as one of 25 Aging Services Access Points (ASAPs) in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. OCES’s mission is to support the independence and dignity of older adults and individuals with disabilities by providing essential information and services that promote healthy and safe living. The agency offers a number of programs to serve older adults, individuals with disabilities, their families and caregivers. For more information call 508-584-1561 or visit