Local organizations offer resources to help seniors with heat wave

SPOKANE, Wash. — With soaring temperatures into the 100s, it’s difficult for anybody to stay cool, much less one of the most vulnerable populations, the seniors.

Since the beginning of June, Meals and Wheels volunteers have been delivering fans to homebound seniors.

Sarah Hall, development director for Meals and Wheels says for seniors, the heat can be deadly.

“For seniors the heat is deadly, for us it’s miserable and hot and sweaty. But for our seniors it can cause severe health conflicts,” Hall said. “They’re much more prone to heat stroke and exhaustion, and dehydration.”

78-year-old Richard Hatch prepares every year with a fan from Meals and Wheels. Even with an air conditioner in his home, he likes to keep extra cool.

“Usually after a while, my fan goes dead. So when they come up with a fan, I could use one,” Hatch said.

He even keeps tabs on his elderly neighbors.

“I had an extra fan. Carol, next door, she’s in her 60s. She didn’t have a fan. I donated a fan for her,” he said.

The Southside Senior and Activity Center is opening their lobby and library.

“We supported each other during COVID, we supported each other during the windstorm,” said executive director Lisa Rossier. “We were open in this blackout and I think it’s just as important, during the weather to support each other, our neighbors and our friends, and check on each other.”

They will be open on Sunday at 9 a.m. for anyone who needs to cool off.