This Living Local segment is sponsored by United Way.

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (CBS 42 Living Local) – In addition to supporting more than eighty partner agencies throughout our six-county area, United Way of Central Alabama operates many programs itself and provides services directly to our community. One of the services provided by the United Way Area Agency on Aging is the Homemaker and Personal Care program.

As you get older, it gets harder to do some of the simple tasks that you used to do. Thankfully, there’s a program that can help. We spoke to Valarie Lawson who gave us more details on the program. “That’s for seniors sixty and older that need some assistance with a few things around the house,” Lawson says. The program helps with personal needs such as bathing, dressing, and preparing light meals.

To qualify, the senior must live alone in Jefferson County and require at least two hours a week of personal or homemaker care assistance for two or more activities for living.

Lawson explains, “For this program, there is no income limit. It’s strictly based on the client’s needs.”

This program is a lifesaver for seniors whose children or families live out of state. It also helps the senior maintain their independence and keep them in their own home longer.

For the Homemaker and Personal Care program, anyone can call and make a referral for a loved one in need of services.

“No senior wants to go into long-term care or an assisted living facility, so the Homemaker and Personal Care program allows them to maintain their independence and stay in their own homes longer.” Says Lawson.

You may be nervous about a stranger coming in and taking care of your loved one, but Lawson helps dispel those fears. “The agencies that we contract with are carefully screened, and they have to go through an approval process,” she explains. “They’re also approved by the Alabama Department of Senior Services.”

Call 1-800-AGE-LINE for more information, or to see if you qualify for AAA services. There is no cost to join.