Great Age: Newsletter of the Marin County Commission on Aging
AgeSong Marin by Ann Coffey, Ph.D.
Aging has become a hot topic as our generation continues to grow in number and importance. We are deluged with articles, research findings, documentaries, and even an Oscar winning movie. Gone are the days of sitting back in our rockers waiting for something to happen. Our future is today, and thus we look to explore new ways to enrich our lives, find new activities and develop new interests. But in the back of our minds we’re not sure how to do this since there are no mentors, no previous generations to guide us, no experienced souls to show us the way. We’re on our own, left to our own devices. So we must work it out amongst ourselves. Collectively, we have some answers, but what to do?
Well, there is something in Marin, which just might help and be fun at the same time. It’s called AgeSong Marin, a program for those 65 and older who come together in small groups to discuss and explore issues of aging, share life experiences, learn new activities, and make new connections. What sorts of topics are discussed? Well, take the issue of loss. We lose our car keys, names of people we know, our balance, hearing, loved ones, and lots more. Another is family relationships – caring for a spouse or worrying about our adult children and their families. As difficult as these are, we survive and try to develop a sense of humor about them. The wisdom that comes with aging helps us work it out amongst ourselves when we have the chance to interact with our peers. AgeSong Marin provides just such a setting to talk, listen, and laugh. The two Facilitators provide reading material prior to each meeting as a springboard for discussion.
The program has been in existence for 7 years. Groups meet for 1 1/2 hours once a week for eight weeks and consist of 6-8 participants and two facilitators. The fifteen volunteer facilitators are in their 70s and 80s and are experienced group leaders. What’s discussed in AgeSong Marin stays in AgeSong Marin. Confidentiality is respected. There is an $80 administrative fee paid to Family Service Agency. Scholarships are available.
For further information, visit www.agesongmarin.org or call Family Service Agency of Marin at 415-491-5726.
This article appeared in the Great Age newsletter.