There are over 40 million adults over 65 years old in the US, and that number is expected to continue growing over the coming years. These seniors have years of experience and expertise that we are lucky to learn from. Senior citizens are recognized each year on Senior Citizens’ Day. While we should always appreciate the seniors in our lives, this day can help us honor and cherish the elders in our lives. And here are just a few ways that you can show seniors how much you appreciate them.
Visit a Nursing Home
Many seniors live in nursing homes or other senior living communities due to health conditions, loss of independence, etc. These seniors may not live near family, or their family may not be able to visit them regularly. As a result, there are many seniors in nursing homes who feel isolated, lonely, and depressed. Your visit can brighten up a senior’s day — especially on this holiday. And your visit can even benefit their health.
Going to visit seniors that you don’t know might seem daunting, but they will cherish the time you spend with them. You can ask them about where they grew up and their favorite memories. Ask them for some life advice. You can also bring treats or activities if the nursing home allows.
Do Family History
Have you done any work on your family history? Your elderly family members will have a lot of knowledge about the generations before them. Take time to talk to senior relatives about their parents, how they grew up, and other family memories. You can record their responses and preserve their memories for the future. Get your own family involved too, so they can learn more about their ancestors.
There are also a number of different sites that can help you map out your family tree, including Ancestry, Family Search, and more. You can store photos, stories, and other files for family members, creating a digital record of past generations. Plus, you can identify new connections and find additional records. Family history is a great way to connect with the past and learn more about where you came from.
Volunteer in the Community
Within your local community, there are bound to be opportunities to volunteer or participate in a project that will benefit senior citizens. You might be able to help provide meals, visit with seniors, organize an activity, cleanup a yard, or do something else that will help lift the spirits of seniors nearby.
Contact local organizations, like Meals on Wheels, or reach out to independent living communities, churches, nursing homes, or other senior-focused businesses and organizations to learn more about how you can get involved.
Write Thank You Notes
Are there seniors in your life who have made an impact in your life? Who have served in the military? Who need some cheering up? Writing a thank you note is a great way to honor senior citizens and show them how much their contributions are valued.
While a thank you card might seem like a simple thing for you to do, it can have a big impact. As we age, we may start to feel forgotten or wonder if we did anything meaningful during our lives. The simple words you write can mean the world to a senior who is struggling with these feelings. Plus, a card is tangible and can be a keepsake that a senior treasures for years to come.
Learn More about Challenges Seniors Face
You might think that, in today’s world of technology, seniors have access to everything they could ever need — entertainment, medical care, assistive devices, and more. However, there are still many challenges that seniors face today. For example, rising costs, lack of caregivers, few advancements in technology to assist seniors, safety concerns, and more.
At Caring Senior Service, we’ve started the Close the Gap in Senior Care movement to raise awareness of some of those needs and to help address them. You can join this movement to help us close gaps in senior care. Of course, there are other resources — local and national — that can help you learn more about challenges that seniors face. Take time to do your research and familiarize yourself with the legislation that supports older Americans.
Focus on a Needy Senior
On Senior Citizens’ Day, you can also choose a beloved senior to focus your efforts on. Maybe you have a neighbor or family member who deserves some extra attention or needs assistance. You could plan a day around what they need and enjoy. Maybe that’s a day devoted to tidying up, crossing an item off the bucket list, learning a new skill, or going out to a favorite restaurant.
By focusing on just one senior, you may feel like you’re making more of a difference. This one-on-one time is a great time to bond and help seniors feel special on Senior Citizens’ Day. Both of you can benefit from the time shared.
Visit Your Family
You can also make this day special by visiting with your own parents or grandparents. If you live nearby, go visit your family in person and look for ways you can make the day special. If you don’t live nearby, you can always video chat or call. Or you can arrange for a special delivery, like cookies or flowers, to get dropped off at their house. These simple gestures can help your family members feel extra special.
We only have limited time to help make our senior citizens feel special and to learn from their wisdom. Take advantage of the time you have with seniors in your life by celebrating Senior Citizens’ Day this year.
For more resources on senior care or challenges seniors face, reach out to our team!