We offer a variety of programs to enrich the lives of elder adults and caregivers in the Douglas County area.

Learn More About

Central Minnesota Elder Network is a non-profit organization that provides a variety of non-medical programs to support our senior community and caregivers. Our programs are meant to support in times of loneliness and isolation. Please view our Resources page for other sources of support and some of our most frequently asked questions with answers.

Elderly woman smiling, being helped up from a couch.

Visiting Program

Our Visiting Program pairs a volunteer with a senior to provide companionship, support, and friendship. Whether provided by conversation and reminiscing, reading, playing cards and/or games, listening to music, or taking a walk, the Elder Network volunteer is ready and willing to help encourage social relationships for our aging community members. The volunteer visits for approximately one hour once per week wherever the client calls home.

Betty Fredman during the phone connections program

Connections Phone Program

Connections is a weekly phone contact between a volunteer and senior to provide a means to improve socialization. This is a non-medical phone call.

Elderly man using a tablet.

iPad Program

Central MN Elder Network’s iPad Program provides an opportunity for clients to learn how to use an iPad and allows the use of one for up to one year at no cost. iPads can be used for virtual visits with family and friends, entertainment such as games and reading, and attending virtual educational opportunities—the possibilities are endless! Clients are evaluated for the program based on interest and ability to use the technology.

Respite Care Programs

Respite care offers caregivers a temporary break from the responsibilities of providing care for a loved one. Our volunteers along with the Program Coordinator provide respite support to caregivers who are experiencing:

  • Isolation due to the demands of caregiving.
  • Lack of leisure time to run errands, attend appointments or events, or pursue hobbies.
  • Concern about their loved one being safe at home alone.
  • A desire for their loved one to have companionship and social stimulation.

We offer two respite programs at a low fee based on a sliding scale or suggested donation.

Young adult having a conversation with an elderly woman.

In-Home Respite

Our In-Home Respite Program pairs a volunteer with the care receiver for one to four hours once a week to provide companionship and promote a safe environment. The caregiver is then able to have a break and take care of their personal needs.

Group of elderly women playing cards and smiling.

The Coffee Break ~ Group Respite

The Coffee Break is a program designed to benefit family caregivers as well as care receivers. As a group respite program, the Coffee Break, provides care receivers the opportunity to socialize with others in a fun, friendly, and secure setting, and affords caregivers time for their own activities. The Coffee Break meets on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of each month from 1-3 pm.
Woman nurse patting elderly mans back.

Caregiver Support & Coaching

Providing 24-hour care for a loved one is a huge responsibility. Our Caregiver Support Team is trained to support, encourage, and empower caregivers and provide them with the knowledge and skills they need to enhance and maintain their role as primary caregivers.