Tag Archives: Springfield

What Motivates You?

Long View: What Motivates You?

Have you ever had one of those inspirational or enthusiastic moments that make you excited and energetic? You know, like the feeling right after you lose the first 15 pounds and have stuck to your New Year’s resolution and want to just keep going? Or after you aced a diagnostic test you were neervous about and you want to continue down a healthy path?

That’s called motivation, and Mr. Webster could not have defined it any better: “A force or influence that causes someone to do something; the condition of being eager to act or work.” Well, when I found out that Health Alliance was named the title sponsor of the 2018 Illinois Senior Olympics and that we would be working closely with the Senior Services of Central Illinois in Springfield to make it a success, it motivated me to write this article!

The Illinois Senior Olympics, based in Springfield, is the oldest of the State Games in the United States. The first Senior Olympics was in 1977 and hosted 122 athletes that year. Fast forward to 2018, and we are hopeful that this year’s games will host nearly 1,500 male and female athletes 50 years and older. More than 30 events along with team sports are offered. And if that doesn’t motivate you enough, Springfield is the only qualifying site in Illinois for those wishing to participate in the National Senior Games! The mission of the Senior Olympics is to give everyone an opportunity to maintain or develop their overall health and wellness. It challenges the physical as well as the mental you!

The dates run from July to October 2018 in Springfield. This gives you enough time to check with your physician, practice up, and start training! Individual sport categories range from archery to bridge, from swimming or basketball to horseshoes and Wii bowling. Or get a team sport going in basketball, softball or volleyball. Whatever you choose, there is a sport that will be to your liking and to your physical capacity. Sponsorships and volunteer opportunities are available, too. When you combine our senior participants, our sponsors, and our volunteers, it makes for a great time and something fun you can be a part of. You won’t want to miss it!

Motivated yet? Contact Justin Yuroff at Development@ssoci.org or 217-528-4035, ext. 118. Also check out the website ILSeniorOlympics.weebly.com for more information on dates and registration along with sponsorship and volunteer opportunities. Come join Senior Services of Central Illinois and Health Alliance at this year’s games. Hope to see you there!

Mervet Adams is a community liaison with Health Alliance. She loves her grandson, family, nature, and fashion.

Cooking and Health Plans

Advice on Cooking, and on Health Plans

Patricia Kendall has always been a people person.

Known as “the fishlady,” Patricia, a Health Alliance Medicare member from Springfield, Illinois, has written cookbooks and taught fish-cooking classes to share her passion with family, friends, and people she’s never even met.

She’s loved fish since she was a little girl watching her dad catch them at her grandparents’ Minnesota cottage. And she managed her local Jewel-Osco fish department for almost two decades. She teaches in fish earrings and fish slippers and has self-published a series of books. She doesn’t just do it for herself, though. She loves helping and teaching others.

“I never had a publicist,” she says. “But I helped a lot of people, and that’s what I am grateful for.

Kind Words

While she doesn’t expect anything in return, Patricia recognizes helpful people. As a Health Alliance member since 2005 and a Health Alliance Medicare Advantage member for the past year, the fishlady applauds those who have helped her.

“In this day and age, when you have all these big insurance companies, the people at Health Alliance Medicare remain personable,” she says. “They help you without transferring you all around. When I call Member Services, I don’t have to go through endless recordings.

“After a while when you talk to them, you get to know them.”

Patricia knows a thing or two about being personable. She published her cookbooks on her own for eight years before getting help from a local publishing company, binding them on her kitchen table and getting the artwork from her brother. She admits to giving away more cookbooks than she sells and shares free cooking tips with anyone who asks.

‘A Sense of Family’

But even with her cheery outlook, Patricia’s life wasn’t always easy. Family is important to Patricia, and she and her husband of almost 45 years couldn’t have children of their own.

Even so, she worked to make others’ lives happier, healthier, and easier through her cookbooks and classes. Along the way, her niece from the Chicago area stayed with her in Springfield from time to time and brought a special person named Kimberly into Patricia’s life.

After age 5, Kimberly 
didn’t have parents. So the fishlady did what she
 does best and offered to help. Kimberly was 21 at the time.
“We wanted to give her a sense of family,” Patricia says. “We just thought about how people come and go from your life, so one day, we just asked her how she would like to have parents and a home no matter where she goes in the world.”

Patricia and her husband legally adopted Kimberly, giving her a true home and parents.

“She’s kind of a miracle,” Patricia says. “We couldn’t have raised a better girl.”

Patricia has faced other hardships. In 2011, she had an emergency cardiac ablation, a procedure that corrects heart rhythm problems.

She was worried and scared afterward, not knowing if Health Alliance would pay for the costly procedure. But after a quick call, the Health Alliance staff put Patricia’s mind at ease and took care of the claim.

Word of Mouth

Now, Patricia doesn’t just give tips about fish. She still tells her friends, and strangers, how easy and healthy it is to cook and serve her favorite food, but she also offers a tip or two about health insurance.

“I tell so many people about Health Alliance Medicare,” she says. “My advice to people if they are having anything done is to always call Health Alliance Medicare first. They just really come through for you.”