Aging Mastery Program Comes to South County

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Marilyn Vineyard, a member of the Osher Life Long Learning Academy marketing committee, has planned an active retirement.

By Sue Moore

For adults in their 50s and 60s contemplating retirement, a special program is coming to the Vicksburg District Library to help with life-changing decisions when facing the next plateau. The class, Aging Mastery, will be taught by Joyce Ryan, age 65, from the Portage Senior Center. She is well-known for her volunteer work in this area and has taught the class three times previously.

The Aging Mastery program, presented by South County Community Services (SCCS), will take place at the Vicksburg District Library on Mondays from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. for 10 weeks, beginning September 11. “It’s a fun, innovative and person-centered education program that empowers participants to embrace their gift of longevity,” Ryan said.

“The class is meant to successfully pursue, investigate and get a person’s ‘ducks in a row’ before retirement as we are not invincible any longer,” Ryan said. “It might involve eating healthy, sleeping well, proper hydration, learning how exercise can help and controlling medications. In one of my earlier classes, a widower said his wife took care of most of these things for him and now he was left to figure it out on his own.

“This is how the class can be helpful so people don’t have to figure it out on their own.”

“Gratitude is a big part of each session. It’s about being positive and grateful rather than negative. There is a small amount of homework each week, like keeping a diary of what is consumed on a daily basis,” Ryan pointed out. “I like to have class discussion take place rather than being read to.”

The program is an outgrowth of the Area Agency on Aging and the Portage Senior Center. It is being sponsored by the Michigan Health Endowment Fund and held through the auspices of SCCS. The cost is usually $100 per person but because of sponsorships, only a materials fee of $30 will be charged. To enroll by September 11, call 269-649-2901 for further information from South County Community Services.

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