Message from senior centers

  • Fri Mar 20th, 2020 3:49pm
  • Life

Submitted by San Juan County Senior Centers

The health and safety of our community is a shared responsibility and one that we take seriously. The San Juan County Health Department recommends that people at higher risk of severe illness should stay at home and away from large groups of people. People at higher risk include those:

• Over 60 years of age

• With underlying health conditions including heart disease, lung disease or diabetes

• With weakened immune systems

The Health Department also recommends the cancelation or postponement of non-essential public gatherings. The Senior Services Council of San Juan County and its three Senior Centers, along with San Juan County Health & Community Services and Whatcom Council on Aging take these recommendations seriously and are adapting services and programming.

Beginning Monday, March 16, Lopez, Orcas and San Juan Island Senor Centers will be limiting or canceling programs and activities until further notice. Please contact your center or visit its website for specific details. While we have not been directed to close, we feel it is our responsibility to protect our at-risk population by limiting interaction at this time.

Community Meals

The regular community lunch program is closed until further notice. We are committed to ensuring seniors are able to access nutritious food during this very difficult time. If you need assistance with meals, please see the details below about Meals on Wheels.

Meals on Wheels

There are currently no changes to the Meals on Wheels Program. Meals on Wheels will continue regular home delivery of meals to MOW clients as long as staffing and volunteer capacity allows. If you are age 60 or older, homebound, and in need of meals please call:

• Lopez Island Senior Center (Woodmen Hall) Roni Becker Wilkie call 360-468-2421

• Orcas Island Senior Center Jami Mitchell call 360- 376-7926

• The Mullis Community Center (San Juan Island) Debbie Haagensen, 360-370-7526

Senior Center Activities Cancellations

To get a complete list of Lopez, Orcas, and San Juan Island Senior Center activity cancellations please visit your Center’s website or Facebook page.

On-going Programs

Other programs will continue unless clients/participants are otherwise notified. For Information on these programs, including, but not limited to, Senior Transportation, Foot Care, Tax Assistance, Insurance Counseling, and Blood Drives visit your Center’s website or contact your island’s senior center (see below). We request that you call or email us instead of dropping in as the Senior Centers offices will not always be open and we want to encourage social distancing.

• San Juan Island Mullis Center – Anna Coffelt, 360-378-2677,

• Orcas Senior Center – Lena Kassa, 360-376-7929,

• Lopez Senior Center/Woodman Hall – Roni Becker, 360-468-2421,

Senior Services

If you require additional senior services such as case management, assistance with accessing government programs or caregivers, assistance with shopping and getting medicines,

transportation to medical appointments, to return or borrow medical equipment such as walkers or wheelchairs, etc. please contact your island’s senior specialists and caseworkers listed below. We request that you call or email us as the Senior Services office will not always be open and we want to encourage social distancing.

San Juan Island: Gail Leschine-Seitz, 360-370-7528,; Debbie Haagensen, 360-370-7526,

Orcas Island: Heidi Bruce, 360-370-0591,; Jamie Mitchell, 360-376-7926,

Lopez Island: Roni Becker-Wilkie, 360-468-2421,; Gail Leschine-Seitz, 360-370-7528,


We will use our normal channels including email, phone message, Facebook and our websites to provide updates on additional program changes and the ultimate restoration of services. We understand these changes have a significant impact. Please know we are making these changes with everyone’s best interests at heart. Thank you for your patience and understanding during this difficult time.


Whatcom Council on Aging (Meals on Wheels and more):