Take time to celebrate Older Americans Month, Homes for Aging Week

Published 9:00 am Friday, May 7, 2010

What are Older Americans Month and Homes for the Aging Week?

Older Americans Month is a program of the U.S. Department of Human Services Administration on Aging. When Older Americans Month was established in 1963, only 17 million living Americans had reached their 65th birthdays. About a third of older Americans lived in poverty and there were few programs to meet their needs. Interest in older Americans and their concerns was growing, however. In April of 1963, President John F. Kennedy’s meeting with the National Council of Senior Citizens served as a prelude to designating May as “Senior Citizens Month.”

Thanks to President Jimmy Carter’s 1980 designation, what was once called Senior Citizens Month is now called Older Americans Month and has become a tradition.

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Historically, Older Americans Month has been a time to acknowledge the contributions of past and current older people to our country, in particular those who have defended our country. Every president since JFK has issued a formal proclamation during or before the month of May asking that the entire nation pay tribute in some way to older people in their communities. Older Americans Month is celebrated across the country through ceremonies, events, fairs and other such activities.

Within Older Americans Month comes a special week. Homes for the Aging Week begins each year on Mother’s Day. It is a way to honor all residents of nursing homes, customized care and senior housing. It also presents a special time to honor caregivers, those who spend their life’s work assuring that older adults can age with dignity in the place they call home.

We at Thorne Crest Retirement Community would like to recognize and thank seniors, caregivers and our caring staff for their continued contributions to our community.