Established in 2007, the Community Ambassador Program for Seniors (CAPS), through its trained volunteer ambassadors, builds capacity to serve seniors in their own communities, in their own language, within their own cultural norms, and does so where seniors live, worship, and socialize. Ambassadors serve as a bridge between the formal network of social services and their respective faith and cultural communities, and assist seniors in locating senior services and programs in the City of Fremont. CAPS is a unique, nationally-recognized, locally-implemented program of the Human Services Department (HSD) and was originally funded by a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
The CAPS mission is to increase service access for all seniors, regardless of language, culture, faith, economic status or other factors that have historically been barriers to access; provide feedback to health and social service providers to improve cultural awareness and service delivery to older adults; and, increase the capacity of senior communities to serve their elders in a sensitive and culturally appropriate manner.
The CAPS Program organizes a training approximately once every 18 months, and has to-date trained 250+ volunteer ambassadors from 10+ ethnic, faith, neighborhood, and community organizations. Community Ambassadors are volunteers who have been trained to provide information and referral services to seniors and their families. Training topics include learning about transportation, housing, health needs, benefits (Medicare, Medi-CAL), Social Security, Legal Aid, Immigration, and Social Needs.