August 21 is celebrated as National Seniors Citizens day in the United States. There are various events and activities held across the country, in recognition of this day.
This day was created to support, honour and show appreciation to senior citizens and to recognise the achievements and contributions they make to the community.
According to the World Health Organisation, there were 200 million people over 60 years old in 1950; by 2000 that number had tripled to nearly 600 million and by 2025 it is estimated that there will be over 1 billion older persons.
On August 19, 1988, US President Ronald Reagan signed the Proclamation 5847, thereby declaring August 21 as National Senior Citizens Day.
In his Presidential Proclamation, Ronald Reagan said: "For all they have achieved throughout life and for all they continue to accomplish, we owe older citizens our thanks and a heartfelt salute. We can best demonstrate our gratitude and esteem by making sure that our communities are good places in which to mature and grow older — places in which older people can participate to the fullest and can find the encouragement, acceptance, assistance, and services they need to continue to lead lives of independence and dignity."
How to Celebrate National Senior Citizens Day
- Take your grandfather or elderly relatives out for coffee and ask them to share their story. Ask them to share any of their proud moments or life's cherished accomplishments, and make them feel appreciated.
- Sponsor a recognition event at a local elderly home or nursing community. Celebrating them is celebrating the day.
- Feature a senior in your blog or on social media. Profile an elderly person's life and his struggle, and let the community know of their contribution.
- Bake a pie, or order a cake for elderly people, who have no family to visit them.
- Send a personal note of thanks to any or all the older adults who have made a positive impact on your life. Make them handwritten cards or a note, or even write a song for them.
Also, if you are a senior citizen, check for special discounts and promotions offered at stores and restaurants in your area.
"None are so old as those who have outlived enthusiasm" -- Henry David Thoreau
"Our society must make it right and possible for old people not to fear the young or be deserted by them, for the test of a civilization is the way that it cares for its helpless members." --- Pearl S Buck (1892-1973)
"As we grow old...the beauty steals inward" -- Ralph Waldo Emerson
"A man ninety years old was asked to what he attributed his longevity. I reckon, he said, with a twinkle in his eye, it because most nights I went to bed and slept when I should have sat up and worried." -- Dorothea Kent
"Live your life and forget your age" --- Norman Vincent Peale
"Grow old along with me! The best is yet to be" -- Robert Browning