Celebratory month invites older Americans to make their mark

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — Around the nation, older adults make their marks every day as volunteers, employees, employers, parents, grandparents, mentors and advocates. They offer their time, talents, and experience to the benefit of our communities.

For 57 years, Older Americans Month has been a special time to recognize these contributions. Led by the Administration for Community Living each May, the month aims to provide resources to help older Americans stay healthy and independent, and materials to help communities support and celebrate their citizens.

Aroostook Agency on Aging officials said this year’s theme, Make Your Mark, highlights older adults’ unique and lasting contributions to their communities — everything from sharing a story with grandchildren to leaving a legacy of community action. 

In the spirit of this theme, the agency offered a couple of ways older adults can make their mark this May and all year long.

Volunteer your time. Local schools, shelters, food kitchens and hospitals always need support. Help a neighbor by prepping a meal, picking up groceries or giving them a ride. Or, take time to pass on your knowledge. Why not tutor a student who could use extra help in math, music or science?

Share your story. There are so many ways to do this, from showing your grandkids around your old neighborhood to writing a book. Take a class and learn how to express yourself with the arts, or assemble a photo album of important moments in your life. 

Locally, the Aroostook Agency on Aging is using its Facebook page to encourage followers to post videos telling about how they or someone they know is ‘making a mark’ in their community. 

Communities that support and include all their members are stronger. To learn about volunteering opportunities or other ways to make a difference for older people in northern Maine, call the agency at 764-3396.

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