Tom's Story

Learn how Tom, a retired dairy farmer, developed a plan to stay safe, happy, and healthy at the farm he calls home.


Tom, 90, is a retired dairy farmer and father of seven. After his wife, Olive, passed Tom began depending on some of his adult children to assist him with showering, grocery shopping, and with rides to church and medical appointments. Tom wanted to continue living on the farm in which he has operated for more than 50 years. Tom needed some additional help aside from his children, who were not always available, in order to do that and he had some funds to privately pay for services.


Tom's family wanted to help him to stay in his home and contacted his local Area Agency on Aging and Sally, the Person-Centered Options Counselor was tasked with helping Tom achieve his goal of continuing to live on the farm. Sally met with Tom and his son and daughter. The group determined that Tom has strong community ties with a lot of help from friends, neighbors, and family who could help drive him to appointments, help him with grocery shopping and the occasional meal. Sally connected Tom with formal supports such as a personal care agency and Meals on Wheels.

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Tom and his family were very happy with the plan they had created. Tom was able to maintain his independence and his children had peace of mind knowing he was safe and supported.

Older white man and woman smiling and seated in front of a garden
Tom and Olive at home on the farm