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Organizational Advocacy

Serving Seniors is not only committed to providing the services and support older adults need to thrive. We are also committed to preserving and expanding the infrastructures that make these services and supports possible.

Our advocacy team leverages the expertise and lived experiences of our staff and seniors to ensure the public stays informed and involved when it comes to the needs of low-income seniors. Our advocacy team includes:

Paul Downey, President & CEO

Melinda Forstey, Chief Operations Officer

Serving Seniors’ Board of Directors

Christina Selder, Director of Community Engagement & Government Relations

Serving Seniors’ Civic Engagement Group

Areas of ongoing advocacy at the local, state, and national level include:

  • Increased funding for senior meals
  • Increasing the availability and accessibility of affordable senior housing
  • System-level changes to address the growth in senior homelessness
  • Protection and expansion of social security, Medicare, Medi-Cal, and Denti-Cal
  • Senior-friendly public policies that address social isolation, the digital divide, and age-friendly communities

Find out how you can support this work here.


In June 2020, Serving Seniors launched our Senior Homelessness & Housing Initiative - a progressive effort to reduce senior homelessness in San Diego. Designed with immediate and long-term impact in mind, the initiative leads with a comprehensive, senior homelessness needs assessment to result in an actionable plan to develop San Diego’s first senior homeless shelter. The introduction of an “elder shelter” into the continuum of care will coincide with the expansion of our senior-only, transitional housing program and new affordable housing developments in the East Block and Mt. Etna communities. By leveraging our nationally-recognized, senior services model and strategically engaging San Diego’s homeless provider network, this initiative will advance San Diego’s vision of an age-friendly community for all.  To learn more about the status of our needs assessment and current partners, click here.

Are you a homeless service provider operating in San Diego?  We want to hear from you.  Please take our SURVEY to help us improve the lives of seniors experiencing homelessness.