Websites for Aging
Czaja & Sharit (2009) note there are dramatic changes in the demographic structure of the USA and other countries. This assumption is further confirmed by experts at WHO noting that by 2050, there will be 2 billion people aged 60 and older. In addition to demographic changes, there are also societal changes that encourage rethinking conceptualizations of aging (Czaja & Sharit, 2009). The current generation of elderly people is different from what it was decades ago. Aging people view advanced age as a new round of their life, and seek to maintain social activity in this period. The present paper suggests that achieving this goal is possible through visiting websites for aging people. This idea is considered in the context of Vital Aging Network (VAN) and American Association of Retired Persons (AARP).VAN is a nonprofit organization whose objective is “self-determination, civic engagement and personal growth for people as they age through education, leadership development and opportunities to connect.” VAN thus views aging as an important stage in life, where there are opportunities for learning, development, and participation of social life. Members of VAN community reach these objectives in different ways. They are involved in life-long learning and personal development through browsing Resources for Vital Learning.
These resources cover virtually all walks of life, including health, housekeeping, finance, and oeuvre. Participation in social life is facilitated through Get Involved where VAN subscribers can learn about volunteer, wellness, and other programs. A very important thing about participation in VAN is that members can get timely expert help from health care providers, social workers, and educators. While being involved in the network, VAN members understand that “Life is a process” (VAN, 2011), while ongoing development is a way to fulfill it.AARP is another excellent site for elderly people. It is a nonprofit organization with a membership of 37 million people living across the world (AARP, 2015). AARP positions itself as a network that “helps people turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens community and fights for the issues that matter most to families” (AARP, 2015). The issues with which the network deals include employment, health care, and retirement planning. Members of AARP can get expert help on issues that cause them most concern. They also access different benefits and discount programs that ensure value for money. Like VAN’s subscribers, members of AARP are encouraged to participate in social life.
The foundation organizes dozens of entertainment, leisure, and volunteer initiatives that help elderly people feel important members of their communities. Social activity is though not limited to taking part in community events. AARP also provides elderly people to express their social position through participation in online forums. The generation of people aged 50+ tend to have a different perception of aging when compared to their predecessors. Modern seniors view aging as a time for new opportunities, rather than a period of decline. Such attitude is preconditioned by a number of social initiatives aimed at elderly people. Participation in online communities …