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Ohio Department of Aging Press Release

March 29, 2011

Department of Aging announces theme for Older Americans Month

May observance will celebrate ways older Ohioans connect communities

COLUMBUS - The Ohio Department of Aging announced today that the state's theme for Older Americans Month 2011 is "Older Ohioans - Connecting Communities." The state and the nation observe each May as Older Americans Month, a time to celebrate the contributions our elders make to their communities and to promote choice, independence and quality of life for all older citizens. The department establishes a theme each year to promote awareness of issues unique to this age group and to help local organizations plan events throughout the state.

"Our elders inspire us and strengthen the fabric of our communities in many creative ways," said Bonnie Kantor-Burman, director of the department. "Their shared histories, experiences and knowledge have given our communities their character, and our elders are out and about every day giving back and making a difference."

The 2011 theme acknowledges not only the roles older Ohioans play in the culture and economy of their communities, but also on the progress Ohio is making to help ensure that our elders have the resources and choices they need to remain engaged in and connected to their communities. More information about Older Americans Month and the 2011 theme is available on the department's website at www.aging.ohio.gov/news/olderamericansmonth/.

The website also includes a toolkit to help local senior centers, community leaders, advocates and others plan activities for the month and, specifically, for Senior Citizens Day, which is May 17 this year. Resources on the site include an event planning guide, activity ideas, publicity materials, posters and other useful items. Organizations hosting activities are invited to list their events on the website as well. Local celebrations traditionally include awards dinners, picnics, dances, health fairs, intergenerational activities and more.

About ODA - The Ohio Department of Aging provides leadership for the delivery of services and supports that improve and promote quality of life and personal choice for older Ohioans, adults with disabilities, their families and their caregivers. Working with 12 area agencies on aging and other community partners, the department offers home- and community-based Medicaid waiver programs such as PASSPORT, the long-term care ombudsman program, the Golden Buckeye Card and more. Visit www.aging.ohio.gov.


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