May is Older Americans Month, created to highlight the contributions of those 55 and over and honor their vital role in our communities and society. This year’s theme is “Connect, Create, Contribute”.
The Administration on Aging, part of the Administration for Community Living (ACL), leads our nation’s observance and reminds us that no matter where we are in life, there is no better time than now to follow your passions and make a difference.
Research points to a wealth of benefits associated with socialization and forming and maintaining social connections. There is often a direct correlation between social interaction and the health of older adults.
Connecting with others can affect everything from diet and nutrition to physical health and emotional wellbeing. Studies show that we tend to eat more when we dine with friends, often making healthier food choices. At East Ridge at Cutler Bay, the active retirement community’s onsite restaurant—with its extensive menu—is a hub of activity for residents. Whether planning which activities and outings to attend or merely exchanging stories about grandchildren, residents relish the company of others as well as delicious, chef-prepared, daily specials.
Being with others also increases opportunities for physical fitness and, you’re more prone to work out if there is someone to hold you accountable. The East Ridge Wellness Center, filled with state-of-the-art fitness equipment and a variety of classes, offers residents the advantage of working out with neighbors who are of the same age group. The Global Council on Brain Health has found social connections can help maintain one’s thinking skills and slow cognitive decline.
ACL suggests engaging in activities that promote learning and personal enrichment. College-level courses offered through the University of Miami’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute can be an excellent option for older adults wishing to delve into a variety of subject matter. Classes that tap into one’s creativity are encouraged to help older adults amplify their creative potential.
There are opportunities at East Ridge for educational and creative pursuits. Just a sampling of the May offerings includes a political discussion group, book reviews, financial lectures, art classes, and cultural events. These are conveniently offered in the community’s Lifestyle Center.
Older adults have a wealth of knowledge to impart on the younger generation and will find organizations will welcome their time and talents. AARP and Senior Corps offer wonderful suggestions for how one can make a difference through volunteering. Local schools, libraries, and hospitals may need volunteers too.
At East Ridge, the maintenance-free lifestyle offered at the community means residents have more time to pursue their interests and hobbies, and for many, that means giving back. There are numerous volunteer committees welcoming residents’ time including the dining, plants, thrift shop, and library committees. Residents can be as busy as they wish.
“East Ridge is home to residents in their 80’s, 90’s and beyond and they amaze our management team with their vibrancy and vitality,” said Director of Marketing Mary Scott Russell. “They are shattering stereotypes and redefining what it means to be an older adult.”
Located at 19301 SW 87th Avenue in Cutler Bay, East Ridge offers spacious one and two-bedroom residences, weekly housekeeping and flat linen services, basic cable TV, all utilities except telephone, and dining in the community’s gourmet-style restaurant. For more information about the community, please call 305.256.3564 or visit email@example.com.