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What is Healthy Aging?

We’re all going to grow old one day and when we do, we all hope to be healthy. But what does healthy aging look like? According to World Health Organization (WHO), healthy aging “’is the process of developing and maintaining the functional ability that enables wellbeing in older age’. Functional ability is about having the capabilities that enable all people to be and do what they have reason to value.” This looks like a person’s ability to make decisions, be mobile, build relationships, contribute to society and meet their basic needs. 

There are many factors that contribute to healthy aging. These include your home and living environment, pre-existing health conditions, access to healthy food, your relationships and family connections, your community and neighborhood, and your mental health.

Access to food is a major barrier for millions of senior citizens. According to Feed America, in 2016 nearly 8.6 million senior citizens faced hunger. And food insecurity is continuing to be a growing issue among this age group. Unfortunately, 9 of 10 states with the highest senior food insecurity are in the South. Clearly access to food is a major issue in our communities. Limited or no access to healthy food is a major contributor to developing poor health. That’s why so many of our agencies provide emergency food assistance as part of their senior services programs. 

Living conditions also are a major determinant of health. Living with mold or old carpets or decrepit stairs can all be a barrier to healthy aging. Our partners at Duke Energy and BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina have invested millions in our home improvement programs that help make home a better place to live. Thanks to their investment, we are able to go to people’s homes and make them safer, at no cost to the client. You can read some of our success stories here:

Healthy aging means being as healthy as you can given your circumstances. We’re doing all we can to help improve the living circumstances of seniors across North Carolina, and we’d love for you to join us. 

Want to Help Senior Citizens?

  • Donate | We use your money to help run our programs, and provide training that helps organizations and individuals make their way to self-sufficiency. You can donate on our web page or find an agencies local to you.

  • Volunteer | We can’t do this alone. Join us! Find one of our agencies in your county and check out their website for volunteer opportunities.

  • Become a Member | Did you know you can become a Community Action Member? Membership provides discounted tickets to our various events, an inside look into our organization and more. Membership fees start at only $25 a year for an individual, or $300 for an agency.

  • Partner with Us | We are humbled by the many non-profit and for-profit organizations that partner with us to bring services, educations and events to North Carolina. If your organization is looking for a non-profit to partner with, please consider us. Email us at We would love to hear from you!

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