Key Takeaways

  • At NCOA, we strengthen the nation’s 11,000 senior centers through best practices, professional development, advocacy, research, and national standards and accreditation.

  • Here are six ways you can promote healthy aging at your senior center.

NCOA’s Center for Healthy Aging provides technical assistance and support to community-based organizations on implementing evidence-based health promotion programs and educating older adults on important health topics. The following are six resources you can use to improve the health of your senior center participants.

  1. Learn more about evidence-based programs (EBPs). EBPs offer proven ways to promote health and prevent disease among older adults. They are based on research and provide documented health benefits, so you can be confident they work. Learn more about evidence-based programs: • Falls preventionChronic Disease Self-Management EducationPhysical activity and senior fitnessBehavioral Health (depression and/or substance abuse management)
  2. Host an EBP at your senior center or locate workshops in your area. Use the NCOA map and evidence-based program search to identify and connect with licensed sites and organizations in your state that are implementing evidence-based falls prevention programs or Chronic Disease Self-Management Education (CDSME). Don’t see an organization in your state? Contact us!
  3. Bring the Aging Mastery Program® (AMP) to your senior center. AMP is a fun, innovative, and person-centered education program that empowers participants to build their own playbook for aging well. The goal of the program is to help older adults successfully face the challenges associated with aging and to offer support in mastering new skills that will give their lives meaning and purpose. 
  4. Participate in Falls Prevention Awareness Day (FPAD). FPAD was started in 2008 to raise national awareness about ways to prevent fall-related injuries among older adults, and is now an event celebrated all week. Forty-eight states and the District of Columbia participated in 2015. Find ideas for celebrating FPAD at your senior center.
  5. Share facts about the flu and the flu vaccine. The immune system weakens with age, which makes it harder to fight disease. As a result, adults 65 years of age and older are more likely to catch the flu and experience complications. 
  6. Implement the “Next Steps to Better Nutrition” program. The “Next Steps to Better Nutrition” program was developed by the National Council on Aging and the American Heart Association to teach older adults how they can afford, purchase, and cook more nutritious foods. Download the complete set of nutrition education modules to implement at your senior center.