Fighting loneliness and isolation with The Harmony Exchange

Older adults suffering from social isolation and loneliness are at a higher risk of developing physical and mental health conditions, including high blood pressure, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s disease. According to a 2016 study published in Gerontology, up to 29 percent of American adults aged over 70 years report being lonely. Although often overlooked, loneliness is a real and growing epidemic that affects the overall health of older individuals. This is an especially prominent issue for older adults that are either homebound or have decreased mobility, as the only people they may see on a regular basis are home aides or family.

The Harmony Exchange was created to combat exactly this.

As.... Read More

             

Culturally Competent Supports for Diverse Family Caregivers: Spotlight on Volunteers of America Minnesota-Wisconsin

This article was written for the Diverse Elders Coalition by Resources for Integrated Care.

Nearly one in four older adults dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid has Alzheimer’s disease or related dementia, and dually eligible older adults have higher rates of chronic conditions than Medicare-only beneficiaries. Caring for individuals with dementia and other chronic conditions often involves significant physical, emotional, and financial support from family members. To meet the needs of family caregivers, providers and health plans may benefit from strategies for supporting caregivers through services such as respite services, counseling, and training and education.

Family caregivers come from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds, and health plans report.... Read More

             

Artist Wen-ti Tsen reflects on immigration and aging

by Ling-Mei Wong. This article originally appeared in Sampan Newspaper. To read this article in Chinese, click here.

Between art shows and exhibitions, you would never know Wen-ti Tsen is 83 years old.

“Being an artist means not following a set pattern of retiring at 65; nobody ever stops working,” Tsen said. “The older you get, you think better. You have fewer distractions.”

Tsen’s portfolio includes a Chinatown mural of Chinese garment workers, with a model displayed at 38 Ash Street, the Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center lobby. His “Home Town” project featured 12 figures of everyday Chinese people from the Chinese Historical Society of New England’s archives, which.... Read More

             

Middle Income Older Adults Need New Policies and Programs That Will Work for Them

by Dr. Marcy Adelman. This article originally appeared in the San Francisco Bay Times.

Joan and Lucy are members of an increasing population of older adults in their 70s and 80s who will need some type of assistance to support them to age in place. Joan is a retired teacher and her partner Lucy is a retired social worker.

Joan told me, “We always planned on traveling after retirement. There are so many places we haven’t been, and we wanted to visit all of them. But then Lucy developed Alzheimer’s, and everything changed. We took some great trips at the beginning of the disease. We enjoyed every minute of our time together. It.... Read More

             

Voices From the Stonewall Era

By Grace Birnstengel. This article originally appeared on Next Avenue.

Multiple conflicting accounts exist of what happened June 28, 1969 at 53 Christopher St. in Greenwich Village. And really, the Stonewall Inn rebellion in New York City that day is just one piece of what really sparked the modern LGBTQ movement across the nation. Here are stories of three men who — at Stonewall that night or elsewhere — have deep connections to an era of painful protest, discrimination and liberation:

“Jeremiah, They’re Raiding the Stonewall”

Unlike “everyone in the world,” Greenwich Village-dweller Jeremiah Newton didn’t attend Judy Garland’s funeral on June 28, 1969. He didn’t really know her; he only saw her in passing at.... Read More

             

Despite connectivity, social isolation is not declining—especially among diverse older adults

This article originally appeared in Aging Today, the bimonthly newspaper of the American Society on Aging.

When asked by staff of the Diverse Elders Coalition about the aging services available in her area, Elva, an American Indian elder from New Mexico, relayed how important her local Elder Center was to her and her peers’ well-being: “We as elders need a place to come to, [where we] have meals, do activities and visit with friends and relatives.”

Elva noted that the Elder Center was a place where she could get information about benefits and other available resources. “Many times, as a Native elder, we feel that we don’t exist,” she said.

In our increasingly digitally connected world, there.... Read More

             

Louisville Program for Elder Refugees Is A Buffer Against Isolation

by Rhonda Miller. This article originally appeared on WKU Public Radio. This is part two of a three part story; read part one here and read part three here.

When elder refugees arrive in America they leave behind violence or religious persecution, as well as family, culture and their native language. A program in Louisville, Kentucky helps refugees who are 60 and older transition to American life and avoid isolation.

This is a protection against isolation – a social hall alive with music that inspires clapping and dancing among refugees in their 60s, 70s, 80s and early 90s. It’s part of the Louisville Refugee Elder Program that serves arrivals.... Read More

             

Elderly Homeowners are the New Expendables as New Development Invades Nashville

by Peter White

EDITOR’S NOTE: The communities and organizations comprising the Diverse Elders Coalition are well aware of how the affordable housing crisis is hitting older Americans. Only last year, for instance, a UCLA study showed that three-quarters of California’s lower-income seniors who rend are being burdened by rising rental rates. The crisis, though, isn’t only being felt on the coasts. The following article is part of an investigative series for the Tennessee Tribune that unearthed trouble in Nashville. Veteran reporter Peter White produced this series on gentrification in “Music City” with support from the Journalists in Aging Fellows Program of the Gerontological Society of America, the Journalists Network on Generations and The.... Read More

             

What Matters? Don’t Let Health Care Get in the Way

by Dr. Terry Fulmer, President, The John A. Hartford Foundation. This article originally appeared on Next Avenue.

When it comes to health care, what matters varies from person to person and differs depending on your state of health or illness. For one person, it might mean feeling well enough to care for an active young grandchild three days a week. For another person nearing the end of life, it might mean alleviating pain or being lucid enough to have one more conversation.

However, when we near death or become seriously ill.... Read More

             

SAGE Alaska Has Made Its Mark on the LGBT Movement

by Aspen Christian. This article originally appeared in SAGEMatters, Fall 2018.

Over the past year, Alaska has emerged as a leader in the national fight against concerted, continuous attacks on the LGBT community, particularly those who are transgender.

In April, Anchorage became the first city in the nation to defeat an anti-transgender proposition that would have made it illegal for transgender people to use the locker room and bathroom that match their gender identity. SAGE Alaska was a part of the driving force behind the defeat of the proposition, and worked collectively with like-minded groups in the Fair.... Read More

             

Walking on the beach in Miami Beach, Florida.

by Shelly M. SAGE member from 2010, mostly at SAGE Harlem. Shelly also volunteers at the center.

Hot sunny days are a welcome change from home in NYC.  Hot weather all the time, even now in October the average temp is 80’s. Good for the bones. Miami Beach was hot sand, cool blue water that not the same in New York. Funny didn’t see the one animal I was expecting was flamingos. Images were reflecting on the highway of the birds on the sound barriers to let you know where you are. And the other was so many palm trees. And only palm trees.  Had only four days’ vacation driving around the area from Miami and Sunny Isles and Ft.... Read More

             
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