The Aging Mastery Program® was developed by National Council on Aging (NCOA) and is being introduced to Florida for the first time. Designed to engage and empower older adults to take small but significant steps to improve their well-being and to add stability to their lives, the program is self-paced and supports participants as they create their own pathways for aging well.
The Aging Mastery Program® was developed in 2013 and piloted in a handful of locations. While partnering with National Council on Aging on another project, The Patterson Foundation saw the opportunity to amplify the impact of the program both locally and nationally in these ways:
1. Connect – Working in conjunction with the National Council on Aging, The Patterson Foundation identified and invited three agencies in the region to launch the Aging Mastery Program®: Enrichment Center at Renaissance on 9th in Bradenton, The Friendship Centers in Sarasota and Venice, and Aging in Paradise Resource Center on Longboat Key. From the outset, a team including all five of these organizations was developed to connect ideas, resources, tools, creative thinking and strategies.
2. Collaborate – With planning well underway, ideas from discussions are resulting in new tools being developed. NCOA offers a powerful program that can become even stronger as agencies work and learn together. For example, as a result of the collaborative efforts, a joint marketing program is being developed recognizing all of the participants in the region. Agencies in the region are focusing on ways to ensure that each agency, its participants and all elements of the program are poised to thrive.
3. Share – In addition to collaborative work locally, this region’s team is dedicated to sharing ideas, information and strategies with others throughout the nation. Close communications with NCOA staff is contributing to the program’s long-term thrivability as it is rolled out throughout the nation.
In its second year, the Aging Mastery Program® is being offered in over 100 locations and is supported by 15 funders. It is our intention to accelerate the capacity of the program to many other centers, communities and states across the nation.
It is inspiring to see the collaborative work of the leaders of these three agencies as The Patterson Foundation offers the support of an initiative consultant. Consultant support provides a guide on the side immersed as an objective third party who helps maintain focus, support the development of connective tissue, and amplify the opportunities as these agencies are stepping out in our region to partner and purposefully contribute in yet another way in our region.
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