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We’re on a Mission to 10 Million!

Every American should have the opportunity to age with dignity and stay healthy, economically secure, and independent as long as possible.

That’s why NCOA is on a mission: To significantly improve the health and economic security of 10 million older adults by 2020. In 2016, we got 843,200 people closer to that goal—and we’re almost halfway to the finish line.

How we define “improve”

NCOA touches the lives of millions of older adults every year. But we have a high bar for counting those whose lives we have significantly improved. We only count older adults who, because of NCOA’s help:

  • Reduced their expenses and/or increased their income by $1,200+ per year,
  • Participated in an evidence-based health program, or
  • Directly benefited—as defined above—from a policy change that would not have happened without NCOA’s leadership and advocacy.

Our impact

NCOA has been serving older adults since 1950, so we know the challenges many face. We create solutions through innovative services, advocacy, social enterprise, and collaboration with thousands of partners nationwide.

Our work focuses on three important goals of aging well: economic security, healthy aging, and independence.

Economic security

Living on a fixed income is a daily challenge for many older Americans. NCOA connects them to benefits programs, educational tools, and employment assistance to improve their monthly budget.

In 2016, NCOA’s Center for Benefits Access supported local counselors who connected more than 625,000 people to more than $1.49 million in benefits. Our Public Policy team also helped 18,000 people gain permanent access to Medicare’s Qualifying Individual program to help pay their Medicare co-pays.


  • 74,500 seniors were connected with $98.3 million dollars in food benefits
  • 5,000 seniors gained access to a streamlined state application for the Supplmental Nutrition Assistance Program
  • 1,200 individuals received holistic economic assistance, connecting them to $3.69 million in savings and supplemental income
  • 6,000 people aged 55+ received job training and placement
  • 64,000 older homeowners improved their economic security using NCOA’s home equity tools and services

Healthy aging

At every age, health is essential to a good quality of life. More than 80% of adults aged 65+ have at least one chronic condition and every 11 seconds, an older adult is treated in an emergency room for a fall. But falling is not a normal part of aging, and people can learn to manage and prevent chronic conditions.

NCOA is dedicated to connecting older adults to education and evidence-based programs that empower them to take control of their health as they age. Last year, our:


  • 983,000 people used NCOA’s My Medicare Matters® to learn how to make the most of their Medicare coverage
  • 6,700 people were vaccinated for the flu at community events sponsored by our Flu + You campaign


Older Americans want to stay active and in their own homes and communities. But few of us ever learn the skills we need to age well. NCOA’s Aging Mastery Program® (AMP) provides a playbook to make the most of our gift of longevity. Last year, 2,700 people in 48 centers across 20 states participated in AMP.

More than 1 million older adults visit their local senior center every day. NCOA’s National Institute of Senior Centers is a group of 955 member organizations that are committed to the highest standards, providing seniors the opportunity to learn, exercise, socialize, and stay engaged in their communities.

5.85 million lives to go

Our goal is challenging, but we’re confident we will meet it. We have a staff with profound expertise in aging, strong relationships with partners who share our vision and values, loyal supporters, and most of all, an amazing passion for the work we do.

You can help us reach our goal. Please share our free tools with the older adults in your life and consider supporting our work.

Download the full NCOA 2016 Impact Report to learn more.

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James Firman, EdD

About Jim Firman, EdD

Jim Firman is President & CEO of NCOA. For more than 30 years, Firman has been a leading force for innovation in services, programs, and public policies for older persons.