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The Journal on Active Aging brings articles of value to professionals dedicated to older-adult quality of life. Content sweeps across the active-aging landscape to focus on education and practice. Find articles of interest by searching the article archives in three ways: Enter a keyword in the articles search bar; click on search by topic; or type a keyword or phrase in the general search bar at the top of the page.

Innovative efforts fuel new options-6231

Innovative efforts fuel new options

Growth. It's what active aging is all about. For those who embrace it, active aging embodies the life-affirming philosophy that, at any age, people can engage in life as fully as possible within the multiple dimensions of wellness. It's a journey steeped in learning and growth. Active-aging professionals and organizations are also on this journey. Each year, they synthesize what they know--from formal/informal learning and on-the-ground experience--and what they have recently discovered into new wellness opportunities for older adults. Knowledge combines with creativity and passion in efforts that advance research, concepts, practices, programs and environments. To encourage this momentum toward growth, the International Council on Active Aging invites applications for its annual ICAA Innovators Awards. ICAA presents these awards each year to those in the industry who are leading the way, setting new standards, and making a difference in the lives of older adults. The program exists to recognize excellence and creativity in the industry.


Innovator awards

The Thrive Institute encourages older adults to flourish-6229

The Thrive Institute encourages older adults to flourish

Notre Dame du Lac has served as "a place of renewal, refreshment and healthy living" for many years. Built shortly after 1900 in Worcester, Massachusetts, the building was first a convent for the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, who informally referred to the site as "God's Acre." Efforts to preserve du Lac's character earned praise when the building was extensively renovated before opening as an assisted-living center in 2000. "The building and programs have adapted to each era, but always with a mission towards the health of elders,"says the website of Notre Dame Health Care (NDHC), the nonprofit organization that today carries on the holy sisters' mission. Deeply committed to person-centered care for the whole person, NDHC promotes social, physical, intellectual, emotional, environmental and spiritual well-being. The Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur's core mission also includes a commitment to "educate for life." Launched in fall 2014, The Thrive Institute embodies NDHC's holistic-health and education commitments with its "Thrivin" series of programs for older adults.


Program profiles

Safe sex: A vital contributor to wellness and healthy aging by Marilynn Larkin, MA-6227

Safe sex: A vital contributor to wellness and healthy aging by Marilynn Larkin, MA

Despite much evidence to the contrary, the myth that older adults don't have sex persists, sometimes even among older adults themselves, as well as those who work with them. Yet a seminal study published a decade ago in the New England Journal of Medicine documented just the opposite. After interviewing a representative sample of more than 3,000 men and women between the ages of 57 and 85, the authors found that, overall, 73% of individuals ages 57-64 were sexually active, as were 53% of those ages 65-74 and 26% of those ages 75-85. Yet even among those who acknowledge that older people are sexually active, many believe another and potentially more dangerous myth--namely, that these adults aren't at risk of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV.


Health promotion

HomeLab: A real-life testing ground for older-adult products and services by Marilynn Larkin, MA-6225

HomeLab: A real-life testing ground for older-adult products and services by Marilynn Larkin, MA

From home health care to government agencies to senior living, organizations are looking for effective ways to promote health, wellness, quality of life and safety for older adults where they live--whether in family homes in the community or in cottages and apartments on a senior living campus. Products, services and, increasingly, technologies are part of the answer. But to ensure that offerings meet the needs and goals of older adults and organizations today, plus shape future possibilities, the active-aging industry needs to assist those who design, manufacture and supply them. Many Journal on Active Aging readers express a desire to have their organizations participate in research, and so I'm focusing this column on the Georgia Institute of Technology's HomeLab. An initiative of Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI), HomeLab brings together an interdisciplinary team of scientists and engineers to do research with older adults. The program is exciting, and expanding, so there's an opportunity to get involved!



Strong relationships: A prescription for healthy aging by Jeff Rossman, PhD-6223

Strong relationships: A prescription for healthy aging by Jeff Rossman, PhD

My father, who just turned 90, shared with me on more than one occasion that he has outlived all his lifelong friends. So, when my mother passed away a few years ago, we worried how Dad would fare. We feared the lack of companionship could affect his health and emotional well-being. When Dad told us several months later that he had begun seeing a lovely woman whom he met on the Internet, we were thrilled for him. One of their first dates was for dinner at a senior center to which she belongs. That evening she introduced him to members of the Choraliers, a group of about 50 men and women in their 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s who put on a theatrical production every eight weeks that includes singing, dancing and acting. This piqued Dad's curiosity .... and he decided to join the group. He is excited to attend the rehearsals and be part of a friendly, tight-knit group who share their love of music and provide support and camaraderie to one another. They share a bond that brings joy and a sense of belonging, and helps them age gracefully.


Social wellness

Research writes the business case for wellness. With: The National Benchmarks Report 2017: Executive Summary-6221

Research writes the business case for wellness. With: The National Benchmarks Report 2017: Executive Summary

Animated discussion heats up a conference room as the value of the wellness lifestyle program is questioned by residents, board members, and a weary chief financial officer who burnt the midnight oil to balance the community's budget for the next six months. In a different office, architects and builders balancing square footage with revenue debate the quantity of lifestyle programming and staff needed to attract residents to a new development (after all, there's already a clubhouse). Are staffed wellness programs with lots of variety worth the money? Three years of data from the ICAA/ProMatura Wellness Benchmarks answer that question with a simple--and loud--yes!



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