Older Americans Month 2019

Every May, the Administration for Community Living leads our nation’s observance of Older Americans Month. The 2019 theme, Connect, Create, Contribute, encourages older adults and their communities to:

Older Americans Month 2019 Theme for older adults
  • Connect with friends, family, and services that support participation
  • Create by engaging in activities that promote learning, health, and personal enrichment.
  • Contribute time, talent, and life experience to benefit others.

Communities that encourage the contributions of older adults are stronger! By engaging and supporting all community members, we recognize that older adults play a key role in the vitality of our neighborhoods, networks, and lives.

This webpage will include suggestions, resources, and material to celebrate older Americans and the communities of which they are a vital part. Everyone benefits when everyone can participate. We encourage you to connect, create, and contribute for stronger and more diverse communities this May, and throughout the year.

History of Older Americans Month

OAM History

When Older Americans Month was established in 1963, only 17 million living Americans had reached their 65th birthday. About a third of older Americans lived in poverty and there were few programs to meet their needs. Interest in older Americans and their concerns was growing. A meeting in April 1963 between President John F. Kennedy and members of the National Council of Senior Citizens led to designating May as “Senior Citizens Month,” the prelude to “Older Americans Month.”

Historically, Older Americans Month has been a time to acknowledge the contributions of past and current older persons to our country, in particular those who defended our country. Every President since Kennedy has issued a formal proclamation during or before the month of May asking that the entire nation pay tribute in some way to older persons in their communities. Older Americans Month is celebrated across the country through ceremonies, events, fairs, and other such activities.

Older Americans Month Themes

  • 2019—Connect, Create, Contribute
  • 2018—Engage at Every Age
  • 2017—Age Out Loud
  • 2016—Blaze a Trail
  • 2015—Get into the Act
  • 2014—Safe Today. Healthy Tomorrow.
  • 2013—Unleash the Power of Age
  • 2012—Never Too Old to Play
  • 2011—Older Americans: Connecting the Community
  • 2010—Age Strong! Live Long!
  • 2009—Living Today for a Better Tomorrow
  • 2008—Working Together for Strong, Healthy and Supportive Communities
  • 2007—Making Choices for a Healthier Future
  • 2006—Choices For Independence
  • 2005—Celebrate Long-term Living
  • 2004—Aging Well, Living Well
  • 2003—What We Do Makes A Difference.
  • 2002—America: “A Community for all Ages”
  • 2001—The Many Faces of Aging
  • 2000—In the New Century … The Future is Aging
  • 1999—Honor the Past, Imagine the Future: Towards a Society for All Ages
  • 1998—Living Longer, Growing Stronger in America
  • 1997—Caregiving: Compassion in Action
  • 1996—Aging: A Lifetime Opportunity
  • 1995—Aging: Generations of Experience
  • 1994—Aging: An Experience of a Lifetime
  • 1993—No theme selected (proclamation signed on May 25, 1993)
  • 1992—Community Action Begins with You: Help Older Americans Help Themselves
  • 1986—Plan on Living the Rest of Your Life
  • 1985—Help Yourself to Independence
  • 1984—Health: Make it Last a Lifetime
  • 1978—Older Americans and the Family

The information placed above was taken from the Administration for Community Living site. Visit them for more info on Older Americans Month!