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Senior Centers

Focal Points

Senior centers have played an important and highly visible role in the aging services network since its creation by the Older Americans Act (OAA) in the 1970s. This network is made up of State Units on Aging (SUAs), Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs), and community-based service providers such as senior centers. The 1978 amendments to the OAA explicitly outlined the role that local senior centers should play as ‘‘focal points’’ to bring older adults in contact with the myriad of programs and agencies designed to meet their needs. Researchers have found that most multipurpose senior centers do play focal point roles providing information and linkages to other programs and collocation of services with other agencies (Krout, 1989a). Thus, senior centers generally have a considerable degree of visibility and support in these communities and often serve as a major ‘‘entry point’’ into the service system.

Additional topics

Medicine EncyclopediaAging Healthy - Part 4Senior Centers - Focal Points, Awareness And Utilization, Programs And Activities, Characteristics Of Senior Center Participants, Programming For The Frail