In tough times, communities find strength in people — and people find strength in their communities. Over the past year, we’ve seen this time and again as friends, neighbors, and businesses continue to find new ways to support each other.
Around the United States, older adults are a key source of this strength. Through their experiences, successes, and difficulties, they have built resilience that helps them to face new challenges. When our communities tap into the strength of older Americans, they become stronger too.
Each May, the Administration for Community Living leads the celebration of Older Americans Month (OAM). This year’s theme is Communities of Strength, recognizing the critical role older adults play in fostering the connection and engagement that build strong, resilient communities.
Strength is built and shown not only by bold acts but also small ones of day-to-day life — a conversation shared with a friend, working in the garden, trying a new recipe, or taking time for a cup of tea on a busy day. When we share these activities with others, even virtually, we help them build resilience too.
This year, Intrepid USA Healthcare Services celebrates Older Americans Month by encouraging community members to share their experiences. Together, we can find strength and create a stronger future.
Here are four ways to share and connect with each other.
Look for the Joy in Each Day
Celebrate small moments and ordinary pleasures by taking time to recognize them. Start a gratitude journal and share it with others via social media or call a loved one to share a happy moment or to say thank you.
Reach Out to Your Neighbors
Even if you can’t get together in person right now, you can still connect with your neighbors. Leave a small gift on their doorstep, offer to help with outdoor chores, or deliver a homecooked meal.
Build New Skills
Learning something new allows us to practice overcoming challenges. Take an art course online or try a socially distanced outdoor workout class to enjoy learning with others in your community. Have a skill to share? Find an opportunity to teach someone, even casually.
Share Your Story
Storytelling is a time-honored activity for a reason. Hearing how others experience the world helps us grow. Interviewing family, friends, and neighbors can start new conversations and strengthen our connections.
When people of different ages, backgrounds, abilities, and talents share their experiences, they are helping build stronger communities – and that’s something to celebrate!
For more resources and activities, visit the official Older Americans Month website. You can also follow the Administration for Community Living on Twitter and Facebook and join the conversation using the #OlderAmericansMonth hashtag.