NORC’s project director calls it a career

Guests at last week’s Rhawn­hurst Nat­ur­ally Oc­cur­ring Re­tire­ment Com­munity meet­ing listened to a present­a­tion by Wills Eye In­sti­tute rep­res­ent­at­ives, said good­bye to re­tir­ing pro­ject man­ager Judy Yel­lin and wel­comed her suc­cessor, Shir­ley Reses.

The seni­or cit­izens had the op­por­tun­ity to be ex­amined by Dr. Mi­chael Ra­binow­itz and tech­ni­cian Guada­lupe Cer­on in a “Wills on Wheels” bus that was parked out­side Con­greg­a­tions of Ner Zedek syn­agogue, at 7520 Bustleton Ave. They also re­ceived an in­form­a­tion sheet on eye care.

The bus has been rolling throughout the Phil­adelphia area since May 2010, and about 2,000 people have been tested. The pa­tients at the Aug. 18 event in­cluded Phyl­lis Bres­ner, who es­tim­ates she hasn’t had a new eye­glass pre­scrip­tion in a dec­ade.

Mike Pond, the event mar­ket­ing man­ager, ex­plained that the bus vis­its health ex­pos and seni­or cit­izen cen­ters in Phil­adelphia, the sub­urbs and South Jer­sey.

In­di­vidu­als fill out a ques­tion­naire be­fore their screen­ing and ex­am­in­a­tion. A pic­ture is taken of the eyes, and the seni­ors take read­ing and dis­tance vis­ion tests and are screened for glauc­oma, mac­u­lar de­gen­er­a­tion and oth­er eye dis­eases.

Fol­low-up care is avail­able at Wills Eye In­sti­tute, at 840 Wal­nut St., or a sur­gery cen­ter, in­clud­ing one at 8400 Roosevelt Blvd.

Any or­gan­iz­a­tion that wants to book the Wills on Wheels pro­gram can fill out an event re­quest form at www.will­

Mean­while, Yel­lin hos­ted her fi­nal monthly lunch­eon. She is re­tir­ing on Tues­day after two and a half years on the job.

Rhawn­hurst NORC, which de­b­uted in 2005, serves people age 60 and older in the 19111, 19149 and 19152 ZIP codes. The agency provides trans­port­a­tion to doc­tors’ of­fices and gro­cery stores, minor home re­pairs and the ser­vices of so­cial work­er Inna Gulko.

In ad­di­tion, there are an­nu­al win­ter­iz­a­tion and spring cleanup days. Some 700 cli­ents have been served in the last 11 months.

“This was a priv­ilege to work with the fun­ders and the cli­ents to pre­serve the dig­nity and in­de­pend­ence of seni­ors in the Rhawn­hurst area,” Yel­lin said.

At age 68, Yel­lin be­lieves it is a good time to re­tire.

“I’ve worked my whole life,” she said.

In re­tire­ment, Yel­lin will be busy ex­er­cising and spend­ing time with her five grand­chil­dren un­der 5 years old.

Reses, whose back­ground is in ge­ron­to­logy, will start on Monday. She will work out of the agency’s of­fice at Ner Zedek.

Rhawn­hurst NORC is fun­ded by the Jew­ish Fed­er­a­tion of Great­er Phil­adelphia, Pew Char­it­able Trusts, Cath­ol­ic Health Care Ser­vices and in­de­pend­ent donors. ••

Re­port­er Tom War­ing can be reached at 215-354-3034 or twar­

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