There is no shortage for the number of issues surrounding our nation and certainly not for our nation’s senior citizens, from healthcare needs to securing a better future for grandchildren. Retired persons or others above the age of 65 comprise more than 13% of the population with over 41 million people. Their influence and impact on the policies and laws that affect them can still be felt, but in their later years, it is more a matter of logistics than actual desire. There are many ways to keep our senior citizens engaged in the community on a grassroots and local political level, and this article explores exactly why and how families should get their elderly loved ones involved in local politics.
How to Involve the Elderly in Politics
With such a large number of elderly persons in the United States, it is clear that politically active senior citizens can make a dramatic impact on improving society. They have the means of bringing people together, and local governments are often keen on listening to their senior citizens because their happiness often results in the happiness of the rest of the community.
Beyond the collective reasons, however, there are also compelling individual reasons to keep our elderly involved in politics. Being part of an active political party or organization often gives our elderly a sense of purpose. After retirement, many elderly people often feel like they lose purpose and direction, both of which are gained by their activity in something that is larger than them. As elderly depression grows, being involved in the community is a way to combat feelings of emptiness and can fill our senior population with motivation to make a meaningful impact and a way for them to feel that they are still important and needed by society.
How to Help Them
Local politics are some of the best ways to help senior family members initially get involved. There are several ideas for senior of any gender, race, or political affiliation to get involved on a local level where their voice can be heard. Below are just a few ideas:
- Have them join or start political party chapters
- Speak with assisted living boards about organizing community political groups
- Help the elderly get out and vote
- Help them attend local city hall meetings
- Help seniors to run for certain offices if capable and willing
Even seniors with restrictions or disabilities can be a voice for positive change in their local community. Remember that getting them involved in any way is the important part. What they are involved in specifically is only secondary to the vast benefits they can receive from simply going out and doing.
Finding Local Opportunities
In any city or town across America, there are plenty of ways our senior citizens can be involved. Getting your loved one involved in local politics is a great way to help instill meaningful change in your community while at the same time engendering accomplishment and purpose in our elderly. Whether your loved one is simply bored and looking for something to do or is even currently inhibited in some way, perhaps even receiving our services as EEOICPA and RECA home healthcare providers, their presence in the community is invaluable and can make all the difference.