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Chelsea Senior Center wins Vital Seniors awards


Courtesy photo.

(Chelsea Update would like to thank Trinh Pifer for the information in this story.)

With much excitement and gratitude, the Chelsea Senior Center (CSC) is thrilled to announce that we received two prizes in the Vital Seniors Competition (VSC): the $50,000 People’s Choice Award based on public votes and the $100,000 Innovation Prize.

On behalf of our team and our Board of Directors, we are deeply grateful to the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation and the Glazier Hills Legacy Fund for making this all possible. This grant award is the end prize or the destination that we have been working towards since January, but the journey to get here has been even more rewarding. This journey has led us to new partnerships and ideas, new ways to think about reframing aging and branding, and new ways to better serve our communities.

The VSC grant funding will help us launch Rural Older Adults in Motion (R.O.A.M.) our vision for addressing rural senior transportation. R.O.A.M. will integrate unique services from existing transportation providers to create one reliable transportation network. With one simple phone call to us, older adults can get a ride, when and where they need it. We’ll match them with the best transportation provider for their unique ride situation. Our goal is to enable the freedom and independence we all need to have the quality of life we deserve. 

We want to extend our sincere thanks to all the people who helped us get here:

  • Our CSC Board of Directors for believing in our vision and our ability to achieve it.
  • Our staff who worked hard these past few months to give our vision life and reality; who understand the impact of rural transportation and its transformative powers in the lives of older adults we serve.
  • Eric Stief, our VSC Project Mentor, who helped us stay the course and on task.
  • Russell Video whose creative minds helped us put our vision into an uplifting and compelling story. They are an incredible team.
  • Denise Cugliari for helping us launch our social media presence – be sure to keep following us on Facebook.
  • Our senior center members who continue to be our best cheerleaders; they truly embodied the energy of a small town and helped us mobilize votes far and wide. Out of ten finalists, we received 33% of the total public votes.
  • Our community partners who believed in our power to come together and achieve great results including local media sources, 5-Healthy Towns Foundation, St. Joseph Mercy Chelsea Hospital, the Chelsea District Library, the Chelsea Chamber of Commerce, local governments and businesses, other non-profits, and all the residents who live in our rural communities; they rallied around our vision and helped us achieve BIG results.

We are truly grateful for the outpouring of support and are thankful for the vote of confidence from our community.  Think of all the places we can go, and all the things we can do, when we are free to roam!

For more information about the Vital Senior Competition and the other award winners, please visit

For more information about Chelsea Senior Center please visit our website, call (734) 475-9242 or email [email protected].

The Chelsea Senior Center is a 501(c) 3 non-profit located in the Washington Street Education Center at 512 E. Washington Street, Chelsea, MI. Office hours are Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The center’s mission is to enhance the quality of life and well-being for area seniors and their families. 

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