The Senior Planet center in New York City celebrated its 10th anniversary on April 21st. The spirited event featured testimonials from participants about how Senior Planet classes in technology and fitness have enhanced their lives, and how the welcoming environment of the center has fostered a sense of community and led to new and enduring friendships.
“Ten years of empowering older adults and transforming lives,” said Stella Fosu, Senior Planet Center Manager in NYC. “Here’s to the next decade of creating meaningful impact and helping individuals reach their full potential in the digital world.”
“It’s an honor to be a part of such a major milestone for Senior Planet,” Marco DiGirolomo, Older Adults Technology Services (OATS) from AARP Director of In-Person Programming said in opening remarks. “The impact that the organization has had on NYC’s older adult population is admirable. I cannot wait to see the impact we have over the next 10 years, especially as technology continues to evolve and implant itself even more into society”
As participants and staff enjoyed snacks and beverages, Marco offered some impressive numbers about Senior Planet sites in NYC—48,448 programs offered since 2013, and 920,487 participations! He described how Senior Planet grew from a single location on the Lower East Side to its present site in Chelsea, and to locations in Denver and Plattsburg, NY, with a new center opening in Miami later this year.
Senior Planet participant Beverly Williams spoke about how in a fast-changing world with technology that is constantly evolving, Senior Planet has helped her change along with it.
“As seniors, we need to keep up with what is going on in the world, whether it is tech or anything else. Senior Planet is one of the best places to do that. The classes are great, and the teachers are so patient. Senior Planet is not only about keeping our brains constantly learning. It’s about being with people who look and talk like me and make me feel powerful and important and smarter. This is a wonderful place and I have wonderful new friends.”
Lynn Jefferson, a volunteer, loves to come to the Senior Planet center to hone her technology skills and meet and interact with people. “Older adults need to be careful about what they’re doing, and this is a great place to learn about technology. The instructors and staff are wonderful.”
Marian Summerford retired early. She first came to Senior Planet eight months ago, and after taking her first class she decided to become a volunteer. “I know I wanted to keep working with seniors. I enjoy being in an environment where everybody is willing to learn.”
Congratulations to Senior Planet for 10 transformational years in New York City!