The Ouachita Voluntary Council on Aging was established by charter on June 28, 1967 and is a private non-profit agency with 501(c)(3) status. In 1980, the Ouachita Council on Aging was also designated as the Area Agency on Aging for Ouachita Parish Planning and Service Area (PSA) and, as such, it conducts needs assessments, studies these needs, sets priorities for services, writes a plan for services (Area Plan), and conducts public hearings to receive the public input for its plan.
The Ouachita Council on Aging/Area Agency on Aging receives federal and state funding under the Older Americans Act to administer some twenty-two programs for elderly persons (age 60+) parish wide. Other sources of funding are United Way of Northeast Louisiana, contributions from program participants, and donations from concerned individuals and groups in our community. OCA is an advocate for senior citizens and operates Carolyn Rose Strauss Senior Center and 12 other satellite/dining sites in this parish, as well as contracting for services with West Ouachita Senior Center in West Monroe, and SCORE (Senior Citizens OutReach Entity), which is located in Richwood, La.
OCA is responsible for carrying out a wide range of functions relative to advocacy, planning, coordination, inter-agency linkage, information sharing, brokering, monitoring, and evaluation designed to lead to the development or enhancement of a comprehensive and coordinated community based system to serve seniors (age 60+) in all areas in Ouachita Parish. Further, this system is designed to assist older persons in leading independent, meaningful, and dignified lives in their own homes and community as long as possible.
It is the policy of OCA, and all Councils throughout the United States who are funded with Older Americans Act monies, to first serve the low to very low income population. Our target is the most frail and needy elderly. We determine the physical, mental, and financial status of our clients through an assessment which categorizes each senior according to need. We do not deny service to other income ranges, we simply must first target the lower income individuals. All services available through the Ouachita Council on Aging are without charge, although we encourage contributions.