Gerontology Institute Blog

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Social Connections

CSDRA helping senior centers transform, meet residents’ needs at record levels

The trope about senior centers being the place you go for bingo and a hot lunch has been outdated for years, but especially so ever since the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Challenged to keep their communities of older people connected, informed,… Continue Reading →

Book examines insights, lessons learned from COVID-19

Policymakers, researchers, and practitioners will gain insights from a new collection of original research and perspectives on the ramifications of COVID-19 for the older adult population. The COVID-19 Pandemic and Older Adults: Experiences, Impacts, and Innovations (Taylor & Francis Publishing,… Continue Reading →

The challenges and benefits of caring for very old parents—while aging yourself

A 92-year-old marathoner. A woman who still practices law at 96. We love to hear stories like these of very old people who are healthy and high functioning, says Kathrin Boerner, professor of gerontology at UMass Boston. Yet the vast… Continue Reading →

Meet a Researcher: Jeffrey Stokes

Social scientist focuses on aging, family relationships, and health The COVID-19 pandemic has exaggerated—and brought greater awareness of—the challenges of social isolation for older adults. Jeffrey Stokes is interested in a related, and timeless, challenge: loneliness. For married older adults,… Continue Reading →

A pandemic silver lining: Finding community and convenience online

In its shift to online classes, OLLI has learned how much more its programs offer beyond course content  Jim Hermelbracht has spent the last two years learning to adapt and regroup, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. In March 2020, as… Continue Reading →

Facing COVID, Councils on Aging adapt to continue serving clients

Series of surveys document how Massachusetts centers are responding to the pandemic Staff members mastered hosting Zoom meetings. They wore masks, stocked hand sanitizer, and limited walk-in offerings. They prepared and delivered many more weekly meals, and they made many… Continue Reading →

Reach Out and Get in Touch: a task force’s mission in Massachusetts

In “Reach out and get in touch: a task force’s mission in Massachusetts,” our Dr. Caitlin Coyle spoke with the New York Times about the Task Force to End Loneliness and Build Community, the Commit to Connect campaign, and social… Continue Reading →

Q&A with Jo Owens, author of A Funny Kind of Paradise

Jo Owens became a nursing home aide in Canada out of a need for money, and came away with her calling. And from that experience, the pain and the human glory, came her debut novel A Funny Kind of Paradise,… Continue Reading →

Engaging People with Dementia

Management of Aging Services grad awarded $500K grant to support project begun at UMass Boston A modest decline of memory loss is fairly common in aging. But, Debby Dodds MAS ’14 says she could “see the disenfranchisement of early-stage memory… Continue Reading →

Boston’s Older Population: Increasing in Racial Diversity, but Quality of Life is Shaped by Racism, Discrimination

A new report from UMass Boston identifies aging equity among Boston residents The number of Boston residents aged 60 and older has increased by more than one-third in the last eight years and more than half of older residents are… Continue Reading →

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