In April 1963 President John F Kennedy designated May as “Senior Citizen Month.” Then in 1980, President Jimmy Carter changed the name to “Older Americans Month.” This year’s theme is “Unleash the Power of Age”…and we say “amen!” to that!
If you are 50 years or older today, you are already a senior adult. 15 years from now, you’ll be 65, I’ll be 81…and my wife will still be my beautiful young bride! We don’t need a crystal ball to view our world in 2030: Your children will be approaching 50, and one out of every five of us will be 65 or older. Seniors will control the market place, and direct our resources; there will be more seniors than teenagers, and more Viagra than acne cream! And hopefully, the many Seniors will be viewed as productive leaders and influencers, helping the world to be a better place, rather than a drain to otherwise limited resources.
So here’s the question: What can we seniors do to be a positive influence, and a productive member of society? We want the world to see we are proud of seniors, and that we are proud to be seniors …actively “making the rest of our lives the best of our lives”, while encouraging others to be the best they can be.
We have the potential for becoming the most influential senior population ever. Staying healthy, active, and connected will give senior adults the strong base we need to continue creating value far beyond what was once traditional retirement age. Now we “retire to” something, as well as “retire from” something.
In our article “Charge – The Boomers Are Coming” we stated “we are a knowledgeable experienced army of motivated, dependable citizens with formal education, guided by classic moral values. We are full of street smarts. We appreciate a job well done, individual merit and teamwork! We have hope for our future, passion to achieve, and compassion to help.
Our positive activity becomes a silver lining to our current economy! Many senior Adults have already begun pursuing more satisfying career paths, part time jobs, or volunteer positions. This means that smart business owners and organizations will be able to tap into the most well trained workforce ever to hit a job market.”
Well guess what, the future is already here! Seniors are leading by example, and creating value. According to the Corporation for National And Community Service, senior volunteerism is at 10 year high. 20 million Seniors volunteered nearly 3 billion hours, valued at $67 billion! “For generations, seniors have been making a powerful impact in their communities, and their service is more important now than ever,” said Wendy Spencer, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service. “With so many people in need, senior volunteers are making a difference in the lives of children, veterans, elderly, and disaster survivors.”
This past week we were privileged to be a part of the Gwinnett Council For Seniors 27th Annual Awards Luncheon, an event dedicated to honoring seniors who have volunteered their time and efforts throughout our own community.
The leaders of the 35 + senior clubs and organizations that are members of GCFS had the opportunity to bring special recognition to their key volunteer of the year. Some of the volunteers had donated incredible numbers of hours during the year and all had provided invaluable service to their club or organization.
We also were honored to receive a Certificate of Appreciation from GCFS for our support and service this year…But truthfully, we could have given a certificate of appreciation to GCFS for the opportunity it afforded us to create value and make a difference in our community.
Per Dr. Erwin Tan, Director of Senior Corps at CNCS, “Volunteering helps Americans by keeping them active, healthy, and engaged. As our nation’s older population rapidly grows, we have a tremendous opportunity to unleash the power of older volunteers on our most pressing problems.”
We would love to hear about seniors you know who have made a difference in our community!
Positively speaking, singing and dancing, Sheri & Bill Eppright
As photojournalists, Sheri and Bill of Positive Public Image, Inc. publish engaging articles, and colorful images, that champion Healthy Aging, and the value of seniors in America.
As entertainers and ambassadors of Healthy Aging, Sheri and Bill interact with their audiences using music, dance and multimedia presentations to encourage an Active Positive Lifestyle and connect with fellow Seniors. Contact us at 678-672-7310, or by email: Contact Us!