Getting older doesn’t mean what it used to. For many aging Americans, it is a phase of life where interests, goals, and dreams can get a new or second start. Today, aging is about eliminating outdated perceptions and living the way that suits you best.
Take Barbara Hillary, for example. A nurse for 55 years who dreamed of travel, at age 75 Hillary became the first African American woman to set foot on the North Pole. In 2011, at age 79, she set another first when she stepped onto the South Pole. Former president George H.W. Bush celebrated his 90th birthday by skydiving. Actress Betty White, now 95 years old, became the oldest person to host Saturday Night Live in 2010, coincidentally during May—the same month recognized as Older Americans Month (OAM).
Since 1963, OAM has been a time to celebrate older Americans, their stories, and their contributions. Led by the Administration for Community Living (ACL), the annual observance offers a special opportunity to learn about, support, and recognize our nation’s older citizens. This year’s theme, “Age Out Loud,” emphasizes the ways older adults are living their lives with boldness, confidence, and passion while serving as an inspiration to people of all ages.
Three Rivers Community Action will use OAM 2017 to focus on how older adults in our community are redefining aging—by taking charge of their health and staying independent for as long as possible and through their community and support efforts. We can also use this opportunity to learn how we can best support and learn from our community’s older members.
Three Rivers will continue to offer advocacy services to help those who are aging in their own homes sort out services and apply for community assistance; and for caregivers, to empower them to have skills and resources to enhance their caregiving. For more information about these services please contact your advocate:
Rice/Western Goodhue Counties:
Carla Pearson, LSW
Wabasha/Eastern Goodhue Counties:
Randi Callahan, LSW