After providing day services to seniors on the Island for more than 30 years, the Center For Living has a home of its own.

“This has been a long and winding road,” said executive director Leslie Clapp shortly before cutting the ribbon on Sunday. “There are so many people who have put time and effort and thought into this.”

In 2015 at annual town meeting all six towns voted to fund the county’s purchase of the building at 29 Breakdown Lane in Vineyard Haven. The facility had housed the Vineyard Nursing Association, and was renovated using funds from a $1 million donation from the trust of Vineyarder Margaret Yates after Ms. Yates passed away in 2015. According to Ms. Clapp, it is about 5,000 square feet.

On Sunday nearly 100 people took a tour, drank prosecco, and listened to live music from the Maggie’s Kitchen String Band.

Elizabeth Searle said she attends the Memory Cafe. — Alison L. Mead

Elizabeth Searle said she attends the Memory Cafe, which now takes place at the new center, once a week.

“They give us a notebook with old songs. A small group plays instruments and we all sing along,” she said.

A favorite song is “Blueberry Hill,” a 1940 hit made popular by Fats Domino. Mrs. Searle said it brings back memories of dating her husband before they were married. “It’s a lot of fun,” she said.

The Center for Living provides numerous services including a supportive day program, affordable transportation to medical appointments on the Cape, memory support services, family support and counseling.

Before the new building was acquired, the supportive day program alternated between the Edgartown and Vineyard Haven senior centers, spending two days a week in each location.

“We had to work in each space differently, and we couldn’t have all our supplies in one place,” Ms. Clapp told the Gazette. “When you’re having to help folks who have cognitive issues, being in a different place all the time isn’t ideal.”

The new facility is completely accessible to people in wheelchairs, with wide hallways and grab bars. The spaces are roomy and well-lit, and arranged so that people with dementia or alzheimer’s disease who might be confused won’t be able to wander out of the building. There is a spacious great hall for music programs and other gatherings, in addition to an arts and crafts activity room, a quiet room with recliners and books, a kitchen, a wheelchair accessible shower, and a laundry facility. Outdoor areas have been outfitted for gardening.

Over 100 people toured the new facility. — Alison L. Mead

Also new are three office spaces and a conference room for the Center for Living staff, who now have a home base from which to organize their services. Ms. Clapp said the day program currently supports about 25 families, with daily attendance between 15 and 18. Families pay $30 for a half day and $40 for a full day of services.

Nancy Langman is the center’s clinical director. She is a doctoral level nurse practitioner with expertise in dementia care, and she makes home visits and counsels families of people with dementia.

“Basically I carried my stuff in my car and worked wherever I could,” she said of her work before having an office.

She says the improvements in day care for seniors are a step, but the Island still lacks round-the-clock care.

“People here are worried about having to move off-Island because they don’t have the appropriate support,” she said. “People’s children can’t afford to live here and care for them.”

She added that adjusting to respect elders with dementia will have to be an Island-wide effort given the aging population. First responders, cashiers in grocery stores, and bank tellers should all be trained to recognize when someone might be confused and to respond appropriately, she said.

Dukes County owns the building, and is currently looking for a renter for the second floor space. County manager Martina Thornton said there has been no interest yet despite advertising and lowering the price.

State rep. Dylan Fernandes made an appearance at the event and addressed the crowd. He called the purchase and renovation of the center a “terrific choice.”