Older Americans Month: Coming of Age Celebrates the Power of People 50+

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Bay Area group captures the talent and energy of people 50+ as a force for public good.

Since 1963 the US has honored the contributions of its older citizens by designating May as Older Americans Month. Coming of Age:Bay Area proudly joins the celebration, with new programs, workshops and compelling service opportunities for people aged 50+ that benefit our entire community.

“The 2011 national theme--‘Older Americans: Connecting the Community’--absolutely resonates with us,” says Coming of Age:Bay Area co-director Megan McCarthy.

“Coming of Age celebrates the ability of all people age 50+ to continue to grow, transform their communities, and become a force for public good. We want to capture and utilize the energy and expertise of people in this age group.”

Extraordinary Volunteer Opportunities

One of the ways the organization does this is to connect people 50+ with nonprofit organizations that need their help, and to develop and promote opportunities that go beyond standard volunteer positions and span a wide array of interests and causes.
For example, current listings include:

  •     Impact lives and the community as you mentor young entrepreneurs.
  • Talk to visitors from around the world as you staff the front desk at the National     Park's Maritime Museum.
  • Lead workshops in healthy living.
  • Help seniors learn computer skills.
  • Provide free healthcare to the working uninsured in both medical and non-medical positions.

More opportunities are outlined in detail on the Coming of Age website, and one-on-one personalized matching is available to help Coming of Age members locate and connect with organizations requesting help.

New Workshops for Individuals and Organizations

Our four-session workshop series for individuals 50+, called “Explore Your Future,” is scheduled in June in the East Bay. The workshops help people envision and create action plans for their next phase of life.

Additionally, workshops designed for staff at nonprofit organizations to expand and enhance paid and volunteer opportunities are scheduled to begin May 11 in San Francisco.

Volunteers—old and young--wield a major impact on the economy. Nationally, volunteers provide 8.1 billion hours of service, worth approximately $162 billion to U.S. communities. California has the largest number of volunteers in the country, about 7.1 million, according to the Corporation for National and Community Service. In the current economy, their role is particularly crucial. As boomers retire and explore ways to give back to their communities, those numbers will rise even further.

Coming of Age is a growing national initiative that began in Philadelphia in 2002. The San Francisco Bay Area program is the first on the West Coast. Coming of Age programs help people explore possibilities, impact communities, connect with others, and chart pathways to a fulfilling, engaged future.

Coming of Age:Bay Area is sponsored by Northern California Presbyterian Homes and Services (NCPHS), with additional funding provided by the Corporation for National and Community Service/RSVP grant, the Y&H Soda Foundation, Wells Fargo, other community grants, and in partnership with KQED.

Membership in Coming of Age is free to individuals 50+, and carries a wide range of benefits. For more information, visit the website at http://www.ComingofAge.org/BayArea, call (888) 308-1767 or (415) 474-7787, or email comingofage(at)ncphs(dot)org.

Contact: Bonnie Lawrence at Coming of Age:Bay Area, (415) 474-7787, ext. 13 or email blawrence(at)ncphs(dot)org.

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Bonnie Lawrence
Coming Of Age
(415) 474-7787 13
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