The Community Forum will be held this Thursday, 10 a.m. to noon, at the PUD conference room on Sandridge Road.

Issues involving senior services in Pacific County will be discussed (and listened to), and surveys will be available to find out just what gaps exist.

While we can't promise to meet every need, without your information, we will be relying on way too many "probabilities." (When you're aiming at something, it's always helpful to have a target.) After all, you folks deal with/without resources on a daily basis and we all know that no matter how many statistics we have, reality on an individual basis is a whole different ball game.

The stats mentioned in the last column (29 percent of Pacific County being 60-plus) should be viewed in light of some further observations about our county:

• We've had a 15 percent increase in our 65-plus population in the last ten years.

• 36 percent of our population is 55-plus.

• Our median age in Pacific County is 45.8 years.

Put this together and we see that our senior population is heading toward record highs. Though this growth presents an ever-growing need for resources, it also presents an ever-growing voice in the county. And the community forum is merely one place your voice can be heard.

In future post-forum columns, we will discuss areas that have been presented and keep you informed of what's happening with the needs versus resource balancing act.

In the meantime, consider: Seniors are a large part of our population and must be heard regarding resources in our county. From city councils to county commissioners, from state legislators to the feds - all have to respond to the voice of community. Let them all know you're here - and more are backstage. (We haven't even yet addressed the baby-boomers coming of age!)

The Community Forum would be a great place to start. See you there!

Senior Information & Assistance

Ilwaco: 642-3634/1-(888) 571-6558

Raymond: 942-2177/1-(888) 571-6557

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