Lenox couple say it takes a village to help seniors stay in their homes

LENOX — Howard and Shirley Shapiro moved to town, full-time, about 14 years ago.
Living in Lenox, the couple loves to explore the cultural and historical activities available throughout the region. But as they’ve grown older, the Shapiros began to acknowledge that staying in their home will become more challenging as time passes.
“We were sitting in the house one afternoon and started talking about getting older and what that will look like,” said Howard.
As they began to weigh their options, the Shapiros found that senior residences didn’t seem like the right fit. They also read Atul Gawande’s “Being Mortal.” In Gawande’s book, he examined nursing homes and hospice care, and senior villages, said Shirley.
The senior village movement began in 2002 in Beacon Hill. Villages are nonprofit, membership-based organizations that act as a social support network for its members in an effort to keep them living in their homes.
“A network of neighbors helping neighbors felt like that was something we might want to do,” said Shirley.
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