Larry Littleton, former director, Willowbrook Senior Center
On May 21st the Willowbrook Senior Center (WSC) celebrated its 31st anniversary â€” the theme was"Celebrating the Past, Embracing the Future"
Sentinel News Service
"I am delighted and honored to offer my congratulations to the seniors of the Willowbrook Senior Center who, with the help of dedicated staff and volunteers, have demonstrated how remarkably productive life can be during our mature years. I know of no better example of a vivacious and productive senior center anywhere else in Southern California than the Willowbrook Senior Center, and I am proud to offer my continued support," said Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas.
"The WSC opened its doors in 1979, and for more than three decades, it has been a focal point of senior activities and services in the Willowbrook community. On this occasion, I wish to applaud the center staff. It is through their leadership that the center has been able to provide quality programs for the community," said Cynthia D. Banks, Director, Community and Senior Services.
At the dinner Celebration, approximately 100 seniors were joined by representation from local dignitaries. Eric Boyd from Congresswoman Laura Richardson's Office presented a beautifully framed Commendation for the 31 years of service. Supervisor Mark Ridley Thomas sent words expressing his ongoing support of the WSC. Mr. Larry Littleton, former WSC Director, served as the Master of Ceremonies. Deacon Calhoun delivered the Invocation and the Pledge of Allegiance was lead by Reverend Fred Simmons. Keynote speaker Ms. Claudia Curry, Altadena Senior Center Director, and Rosendo Garcia addressed the audience on the topic of "Embracing the Future."
Greg Robinson, Center Director for Florence Firestone dropped in to express his well wishes to the seniors and the staff.
"The presentation topic, Embracing the Future, focused on the direction the WSC is headed as we prepare to meet the needs of our baby boomer population," said Saundra Hamilton, WSC Director.
In commemoration of the 31 years the WSC has offered service to the community, Ms. Hamilton,asked seniors that participate in the programs to comment about their experiences at the WSC.
"I have been coming to Willowbrook Senior Center for almost 14 years. The Center is my home away from home. The staff tries to make my visit each week better and better." "The Senior Center tries to keep our mind and body active."
"When I retired one of the best choices I made was to attend the Willowbrook Center, a place that I go to meet with my friends. I attend a quilting class once a week, which I enjoy. The center is a very important place for me; it allows me a place to go and have fun. There are many activities to attend, some outings and educational classes. I have been a member for five years," says Georgia Price.
A member since September 2002 stated: "It is my second home where I see the smiling faces of people who know my name. We share interests, such as line dancing."
"It's a place for seniors to have recreation, lunch and it offers different benefits," said James McClain, a member of the WSC since 1990.
"It's a new view of life. It's my lifeline. Started coming here about 10 months ago,"said Janice Allen.
While the WSC has as mandated a Center Advisory Board and the newly formed Friends of the Center Group provided time and fundraising to ensure the events success. Programs and services at the WSC include, but are not limited to, health fairs, trips to events, Black History month celebration, senior nutrition meals programs, computer classes, and elder abuse workshops. To learn more about the programs and services offered at the WSC and other senior centers in the County of Los Angeles, visit the CSS website: http://css.lacounty.gov.