Foundation Joins Effort to Tap Boomer Experience
Resource type: News
by Kate Parmelee In the ’60s, Boomers helped change the world. As the first generation of Boomers enters their 60s, will they do it again? National research is showing that as the baby boomer generation ages many want to work, learn and volunteer in ways that help others. With a $25,000 grant, The Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties is conducting a study to learn how the community can tap into this extraordinary pool of experience, locally. The study will look at barriers and opportunities for engaging a growing number of residents over 50 –the largest, healthiest, and best educated group in history- in ways that benefit Palm Beach and Martin Counties. The study will also look at how other generations can follow the Boomers’ lead of generating civic good. The Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties is among eight foundations nationwide to receive a grant from Community Experience Partnership, a multi-year, multi-million dollar initiative from The Atlantic Philanthropies, a private foundation that supports programs worldwide. The grants are provided to help community foundations understand current realities and identify new possibilities for older adults seeking to improve their communities. “This initiative is positioned at the forefront of a growing movement,” said Laura Robbins, head of the U.S. Aging Program for The Atlantic Philanthropies. “In communities across the U.S., older adults embody a wealth of energy, skills, and experience. Rather than winding down, many are interested in starting up with new activities that serve the greater good.” With the first of 77 million baby boomers now in their sixties, the United States is facing a massive demographic shift. As Palm Beach and Martin Counties’ already large population of adults 50 years and older continues to grow, the communities have a significant opportunity to involve older adults in positions that address serious social issues. However, Palm Beach and Martin Counties may lack the support needed to effectively engage older adults. Attitudes and perceptions may stand in the way too. “One of the greatest strengths of Palm Beach and Martin Counties has always been the experience of our people,” said Shannon Sadler Hull, President & CEO of the Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties. “This grant will allow us to take a closer look at how we might overcome outdated attitudes and capitalize on the skills and passions of older adults as they transition from career to retirement into a new generation of opportunity.” The Community Foundation will survey community organizations in Palm Beach and Martin Counties to learn more about programs that use both paid and unpaid older adults to address community needs. The Community Foundation is especially interested in organizations that use a multi-generational approach in their work. The Community Foundation will also provide information to organizations about how to strategically include older adults in solving community problems. For more information on this exciting study and to participate, please visit www.yourcommunityfoundation.org or call the Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties at 561-659-6800. ______________________________________________________________ The Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties has been creating lasting value for our communities for more than 35 years. With permanent endowment now totaling $138 million, the Foundation accepts contributions from individuals, families, businesses, corporations and other foundations in support of community initiatives, special projects and permanent endowment. Income from endowment is used to make grants and award scholarships primarily in Palm Beach and Martin counties. Since 1972, The Community Foundation has granted over $68 million to the community in the areas of Arts and Culture, Community Initiatives, Community/Economic Development, Education, Environment, Health and Human Services, Health and Human Services and Intergenerational Programs. Nonprofit organizations throughout Palm Beach and Martin counties help us to fulfill our mission and, together, we can make our region a better place to live. To learn more, please visit www.yourcommunityfoundation.org. The Community Experience Partnership seeks to engage U.S. community foundations to tap into the collective and individual experience older adults have to offer. Through research, planning and local projects designed to identify and solve key community issues, the Partnership aims to increase the involvement of people over 60 through paid work, lifelong learning and volunteering-activities that can lead to improved quality of life for others while increasing personal fulfillment. The Community Experience Partnership is managed by Community Planning & Research LLC with fiduciary support from the Special Projects Fund at the San Francisco Foundation.