by Katheryn Howell, ISR Senior Director of Community Programs
Established in 1963, Older Americans Month (OAM) is celebrated every May. Led by the Administration for Community Living (ACL), OAM is a time for us to acknowledge the contributions and achievements of older Americans, highlight important trends, and strengthen our commitment to honoring our more senior citizens.
This year’s OAM theme, Aging Unbound, offers an opportunity to explore a wide range of aging experiences and promote the importance of enjoying independence and fulfillment by paving our paths as we age.
This May, join us as we recognize the 60th anniversary of OAM and challenge the narrative on aging. Here are some ways we can all participate in Aging Unbound:
- Embrace the opportunity to change. Find a new passion, go on an adventure, and push boundaries by not letting age define your limits. Invite creativity and purpose into your life by trying new activities in your community to bring in more growth, joy, and energy.
- Explore the rewards of growing older. With age comes knowledge, which provides insight and confidence to understand and experience the world more deeply. Expand that knowledge through reading, listening, classes, and creative activities.
- Stay engaged in your community. Everyone benefits when everyone is connected and involved. Stay active by volunteering, working, mentoring, participating in social clubs, and participating in community activities at your local senior center or elsewhere.
- Form relationships. As an essential ingredient of well-being, relationships can enhance your quality of life by introducing new ideas and unique perspectives. Invest time with people to discover deeper connections with family, friends, and community members.
During May, challenge the narrative on aging by volunteering. As our island population grows, program volunteers are needed more than ever. In 2022, ISR had 259 active volunteers serving 26,392 hours (an increase of 14% over 2021) and driving 263,155 miles, primarily supporting Meals on Wheels, Medical Transportation, Senior Thrift, the board of directors, and various committees. Most of our volunteers are 60+, and we have some volunteers well into their 80s. Visit our website to see our volunteer opportunities (under the About tab at www.senior-resources.org).
For more information about Older Americans Month, visit the OAM website, follow the Administration for Community Living on Twitter and Facebook, and join the conversation using #OlderAmericansMonth.