The Florida Department of Elder Affairs aims to make communities safe and nurturing places for all Floridians to live well and age well – a state that benefits seniors and youth alike. In Florida, we are firmly committed to helping our seniors meet the challenges of aging.
Florida’s seniors are instrumental in paving the way for future generations to live, work, play, and thrive. Every day, our state benefits from the wisdom and the contributions of the older Floridians. Senior citizens play a vital role in Florida’s rich heritage.
With a warm climate and even warmer hearts, Florida has a rich history of being senior-friendly. As our elder population grows, we have a special responsibility to serve and respond to the needs of this dynamic and valuable group.
Florida’s Senior Centers
In Florida, approximately 250 senior centers are operated by a variety of organizations, including private, non-profit organizations, municipal governments, county governments, and other types of organizations. Senior centers are community facilities focused on providing a broad spectrum of services suited to the diverse needs and interests of independent older persons.
An estimated 380,000 seniors visit Florida’s senior centers every year. Senior centers are highly visible focal points within their communities and offer programs and services for older individuals in five main categories: health (including mental health), social, nutritional, educational and recreational.
Other activities may include the following:
- Advisory Council (participatory governing)
- Arts and crafts – painting, ceramics, needlecrafts
- Educational classes – computer, languages, creative writing, history, book discussion groups
- Intergenerational projects
- Library services
- Legal services
- Special events – dances, fundraisers, banquets, luncheons
- Travel groups
Senior Centers in Your Area
These centers provide seniors the opportunity to participate in community-based activities within their own neighborhoods and among their friends. To contact a senior center near you, call the Elder Helpline at 1-800-96-ELDER or 1-800-963-5337.
With the nation’s largest concentration of residents age 65 and older, Florida relies on a network of committed volunteers and dedicated professionals to deliver support and services.
DOEA and the aging networks foster an environment where seniors can thrive, grow, and engage in civic opportunities. Volunteer opportunities are available with internal programs and includes:
- Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders (SHINE)
- Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program
- Respite for Elders Living in Everyday Families (RELIEF)
External volunteer partnerships include
The Department recognizes the projected increase in the number of Florida retirees and the benefits of social interaction between elders and youth. Intergenerational programs are social vehicles that provide unique opportunities for different generations to come together to share experiences, skills, and knowledge that are reciprocally beneficial and foster positive long-term relationships. We partner with schools, civic organizations, and local intergenerational programs to highlight these great opportunities.
For more information about activities, as well as programs for volunteering and intergenerational relationships please contact the Office of Volunteer & Community Services at 850-414-2097.