Gretna’s Lions Club to become health center for seniors

The Gretna City Council approved a plan Wednesday to turn the Lions Club on Franklin Avenue into a health center for seniors by the end of the year.

The council voted unanimously to allow Mayor Belinda Constant to sign a cooperative endeavor agreement under which Peoples Health will spend between $500,000 and $750,000 to renovate and expand the building, which will continue to be owned and maintained by the city.

The Jefferson Parish Council on Aging will manage the center as it does other facilities throughout East and West Jefferson, Constant said.

Carol Solomon, chief executive officer of Peoples Health, said the Gretna Senior and Wellness Center will be expanded from 3,400 square feet to 5,000 square feet.

It will be open to the general public, offering seniors Medicare-covered programs including chronic disease management, plus exercise and recreation, music therapy, and cooking and nutrition classes, among others.

Solomon said the center will be open every day, serving breakfast and lunch and providing transportation for those needing it.

Constant and several council members praised the project, saying it would serve as a model for future senior centers in the region.