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Seniors First gives portable power stations to older adults living alone

In this photo provided by Seniors First, a Jackery personal power station is provided to an older Central Florida resident who is living alone.
Courtesy photo
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Seniors First
In this photo provided by Seniors First, a Jackery personal power station is provided to an older Central Florida resident who is living alone.

Three hundred older residents living alone in Central Florida are getting portable power stations to help them survive outages during hurricanes and other disasters.

Volunteers with the nonprofit Seniors First are distributing the battery-powered, suitcase-like units in Orange, Seminole and Polk counties.

Communications director Katherine Brown said the Jackery and Anker portable power stations cost $650 to $800 each and were paid for with state funds.

She said those units can power up to eight devices at once, including cell phones, radios and portable fans.

"Now something like a medical device or an oxygen machine, say for instance, obviously pulls a lot more power," Brown said. "The good thing here is that it would be able to power that medical device for plenty of time for emergency services to be summoned."

Brown said Seniors First prioritized the clients who live alone with little or no support -- to make sure they can maintain communication.

In a news release, Seniors First said this program is part of a larger effort to help older residents prepare for an above-average hurricane season, including support through its nutrition programs to deliver enough shelf-stable food for three to five days without power.

Other resources for seniors preparing for hurricane season include this check list from AARP and apreparedness guide published by the Florida Department Department of Elder Affairs.

Joe Byrnes came to Central Florida Public Media from the Ocala Star-Banner and The Gainesville Sun, where he worked as a reporter and editor for several years. Joe graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans and turned to journalism after teaching. He enjoys freshwater fishing and family gatherings.
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