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07.04.24 | Community

Reflecting on Frederick Douglass’ “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?”

Independence Day, celebrated on July 4th, marks the birth of American liberty and democracy. However, for many older African Americans, the celebration is tinged with complex reflections on freedom and equality. A pivotal moment in this historical context is Frederick Douglass’ 1852 speech, “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?” which challenges the nation’s ideals by exposing the stark realities of slavery. As we value mindfulness, cultural appreciation, and lifelong learning at Sage Collective. reflecting on Douglass’ speech through these lenses helps us understand the deeper significance of July 4th for African Americans today.

Frederick Douglass: A Voice for Justice
Frederick Douglass, a former enslaved person who became a leading voice in the abolitionist movement, delivered his powerful speech on July 5, 1852, to the Ladies’ Anti-Slavery Society of Rochester, New York. In this address, Douglass poignantly asked, “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?” He highlighted the hypocrisy of a nation that celebrated freedom and independence while millions remained enslaved.

Douglass’ speech is a searing indictment of American society’s failure to live up to its founding principles. He praised the vision of the Founding Fathers but castigated the country for its moral blindness and failure to extend the same rights to all its citizens. His words resonate with a force that continues to inspire and challenge us today.

At the time of Douglass’ speech, the United States was deeply divided over the issue of slavery. The 1850s saw increased tensions that would eventually lead to the Civil War. Douglass’ address served as both a critique and a call to action, urging Americans to confront the contradictions between their professed values and their practices.

For older African Americans, Douglass’ speech is a poignant reminder of the struggle for freedom and equality. Many have lived through significant periods of civil rights advancements, from the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s to the ongoing fight for racial justice today. Douglass’ words remind us of the importance of vigilance and the need to continue advocating for justice and equality.

Reflecting on Independence Day Today
Reflecting on Douglass’ speech provides a deeper understanding of what Independence Day means for African Americans. While July 4th celebrates American independence, it also serves as a reminder of the historical and ongoing struggles for true equality. This duality is particularly significant for older African Americans, who have witnessed both progress and setbacks in the quest for civil rights.

At Sage Collective, we encourage using this reflection as a means of promoting lifelong learning and cultural awareness. Understanding the historical context of Independence Day through Douglass’ perspective enriches our appreciation of the holiday and deepens our commitment to advocating for a more just society.

Honoring Douglass’ Legacy Through Action
Douglass’ speech is not just a historical document but a call to action. It urges us to reflect on our values and to actively work towards a society that lives up to its ideals of liberty and justice for all. For older African Americans, this means continuing to share their stories, advocate for their communities, and engage in the ongoing fight for equality — with a particular focus on intergenerational dialogues that encourage conversations between older and younger generations about the meaning of Independence Day and the importance of Douglass’ message.

As we celebrate July 4th this year — and every year — let us honor Douglass’ legacy by continuing to advocate for justice and equality. At Sage Collective, we are inspired to embrace the true spirit of freedom by working towards a society where all can celebrate liberty and justice.

Frederick Douglass photographed by George Kendall Warren, circa 1879. Public domain.s
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06.27.24 | Mental Wellbeing

The Art of Calligraphy: More than Just Beautiful Writing

Calligraphy, often perceived as merely an aesthetically pleasing form of writing, is far more than that. It’s an art form that combines visual beauty with expressive creativity, offering numerous benefits for mental well-being and personal development. At Sage Collective, we recognize the importance of embracing creative pursuits that enhance vibrant living. Here’s why calligraphy is not just about beautiful writing, but a pathway to mindfulness, historical appreciation, and personal growth.

A Journey into Mindfulness
Engaging in calligraphy is akin to embarking on a meditative journey. The repetitive, deliberate strokes required to form each letter necessitate a focus that can help calm the mind and alleviate stress. In a world that is often chaotic and fast-paced, calligraphy offers a serene escape. It’s an opportunity to slow down, concentrate on the present moment, and achieve a state of mindfulness.

This practice of mindfulness through calligraphy can improve mental clarity and reduce anxiety. The act of concentrating on the precise movements of the pen helps to shift focus away from everyday worries, creating a tranquil space where the mind can relax and rejuvenate.

Connecting with History and Culture
Calligraphy is steeped in rich history and cultural significance. From ancient Chinese scripts to the elegant flourishes of Arabic calligraphy, each style tells a story of the civilization it originated from. Learning calligraphy is not just about mastering a skill but also about connecting with these historical and cultural narratives.

For older adults, this connection to history can be particularly enriching. It offers a way to engage with different cultures and traditions, fostering a sense of global awareness and appreciation. At Sage Collective, we encourage exploring such cultural arts as a means of lifelong learning and intellectual stimulation.

Enhancing Creativity and Personal Expression
Calligraphy is a powerful medium for personal expression. Unlike standard handwriting, which is often hurried and utilitarian, calligraphy allows for the creation of unique, expressive works of art. Each flourish and curve can be tailored to reflect individual personality and style.

This creative process is immensely rewarding. It provides a tangible sense of accomplishment as one sees their skill improve over time. Additionally, creating something beautiful can be a source of pride and joy, enhancing overall emotional well-being.

Practical Benefits and Applications
Beyond its artistic and therapeutic benefits, calligraphy has practical applications that can add a personal touch to everyday life. From designing personalized greeting cards to crafting unique home decor, the skills learned through calligraphy can be used to enhance various aspects of life.

Moreover, calligraphy can be a social activity. Joining a calligraphy group or class offers opportunities for social interaction and community building, aligning perfectly with Sage Collective’s values of fostering connections and engagement among older adults.

Starting with calligraphy is easier than it might seem. Basic supplies include a calligraphy pen or brush, ink, and paper. Numerous online resources and local classes are available to guide beginners through the fundamentals. The key is to start slow, practice regularly, and enjoy the journey.

At Sage Collective, we celebrate enriching practices that contribute to vibrant living and holistic well-being. So why not pick up a pen and start your calligraphy journey today?

JesseVanTerrer on Wikimedia Commons, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.
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06.18.24 | Community

Celebrating Juneteenth 2024: Honoring Freedom and Resilience

Juneteenth, observed on June 19th, is a deeply significant day in American history. It marks the moment in 1865 when Union soldiers, led by Major General Gordon Granger, arrived in Galveston, Texas, with the news that the Civil War had ended and enslaved people were now free. This was two and a half years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation had officially ended slavery. In 2024, we continue to celebrate Juneteenth, not only to honor the freedom of African Americans but also to reflect on their enduring resilience, cultural contributions, and the ongoing journey towards equality.

At Sage Collective, we believe in fostering vibrant living through community engagement, lifelong learning, and cultural appreciation. Juneteenth aligns with our values as it emphasizes the importance of recognizing and celebrating the rich histories and contributions of African Americans, while also advocating for social justice and equality.

Historical Significance
Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day or Emancipation Day, holds a pivotal place in American history. On June 19, 1865, the last group of enslaved people in the United States learned of their freedom in Galveston, Texas. This momentous event came two months after the Confederate General Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox Court House in Virginia, effectively ending the Civil War. However, the news of emancipation was delayed in reaching some parts of the country, particularly in remote areas like Texas.

The delay underscores the broader struggles for freedom and justice that African Americans have faced throughout history. Juneteenth thus symbolizes not only the end of slavery but also the ongoing fight for civil rights and social justice. It is a day of profound historical reflection and a celebration of African American culture and heritage.

Honoring Resilience and Cultural Contributions
Celebrating Juneteenth is an opportunity to honor the resilience of African Americans who have, despite centuries of oppression, made monumental contributions to every aspect of American life. From the arts and sciences to politics and sports, African Americans have shaped the nation’s cultural and intellectual landscape in countless ways.

In 2024, as we observe Juneteenth, it’s essential to recognize and celebrate these contributions. Events such as musical performances, art exhibits, educational workshops, and community gatherings provide platforms for showcasing African American talent and heritage. These celebrations not only honor the past but also inspire future generations to continue the legacy of excellence and resilience.

The Journey Towards Equality
Juneteenth is also a time to reflect on the ongoing journey towards equality. While it marks a significant victory in the fight against slavery, it also reminds us of the work still needed to achieve true equality. Issues such as systemic racism, economic disparity, and social injustice continue to affect African American communities.

At Sage Collective, we are committed to promoting vibrant living by supporting initiatives that foster equality and social justice. Juneteenth is a call to action for all of us to engage in conversations about race and equality, participate in community activism, and support policies and initiatives that promote social justice. By doing so, we honor the spirit of Juneteenth and contribute to building a more equitable society.

How to Celebrate Juneteenth
Here are several ways to celebrate Juneteenth this year:

Attend Local Events: Many communities host Juneteenth celebrations featuring parades, concerts, and cultural performances. Partipating in these events is a wonderful way to support and celebrate African American culture.

Educate Yourself and Others: Use this day to learn more about African American history and the significance of Juneteenth. Share this knowledge with friends and family to foster greater understanding and appreciation.

Support Black-Owned Businesses: Show your support for the African American community by shopping at Black-owned businesses. This not only boosts the local economy but also honors the entrepreneurial spirit within the community.

Engage in Community Service: Volunteer your time or donate to organizations that work towards social justice and support African American communities. Your contributions can make a meaningful impact.

Reflect and Advocate: Take time to reflect on the importance of freedom and equality. Advocate for policies and practices that promote racial justice and equality in your community and beyond.

Juneteenth is a powerful reminder of the enduring struggle for freedom and equality. As we celebrate Juneteenth 2024 with Sage Collective, let us honor the resilience and contributions of African Americans, reflect on our shared history, and commit to the ongoing work of building a just and equitable society. Through celebration, education, and advocacy, we can ensure that the spirit of Juneteenth continues to inspire and guide us.

 

The first version of the Juneteenth flag was created in 1997 by activist Ben Haith and that early version was displayed that year. The present version, with colors and symbols representing freedom and the end of slavery, was first flown in 2000. Photo credit: HolidayHours on Flickr Creative Commons, Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic Deed.
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06.13.24 | Health & Wellness

Inspiration Through Dance: A Rhythm for Every Age

At Sage Collective, we explore the myriad ways through which vibrant living can be achieved and celebrated. Among these, dance stands out as a particularly joyous and expressive avenue. It transcends mere physical activity, embodying a form of communication that resonates across all ages. Through dance, we not only move our bodies but also connect with our inner selves, our community, and the world at large, finding inspiration in every step.

The Universal Language of Dance
Dance is often called the universal language, and for good reason. It bypasses the need for words, conveying emotions and stories through movement. From the elegant sweeps of ballet to the lively steps of salsa, each style of dance offers a unique means of expression. For older adults, dance represents not just a way to stay physically active but a conduit for emotional expression, social interaction, and cultural engagement.

Health Benefits: Beyond the Physical
The physical benefits of dance are well-documented, including improved strength, balance, and cardiovascular health. However, its advantages extend far beyond the physical realm. Dance stimulates the mind, enhancing cognitive function through the memorization of steps and sequences. It can also be a powerful tool for emotional well-being, helping to alleviate symptoms of depression and anxiety through the release of endorphins, the body’s natural mood lifters.

A Bridge Across Generations
Dance serves as a vibrant bridge connecting different generations. It’s a shared activity that transcends age barriers, fostering mutual respect and understanding between younger and older individuals. Intergenerational dance classes or events can be particularly enriching, allowing participants to learn from each other and create shared memories. These interactions underscore the timeless nature of dance and its capacity to bring people together, celebrating the diversity of experiences and perspectives within our communities.

Cultural Expression and Connection
Dance also offers a powerful means of exploring and connecting with various cultures. Traditional dances from around the world tell stories of history, heritage, and identity. Engaging with these dances allows older adults to explore different cultural expressions and, for some, reconnect with their own heritage. It’s a beautiful reminder of the rich tapestry of human culture and the ways in which dance can serve as both a window and a mirror to the world.

Finding Your Rhythm
Embarking on a journey of dance requires no previous experience—only a willingness to explore and enjoy the movement. Dance classes tailored to older adults can provide a supportive and inclusive environment to start. Whether it’s ballroom, tap, folk, or even contemporary dance, the key is to find a style that resonates with you. Solo dance at home, guided by online tutorials, or group classes at a local community center, offers not just exercise but a joyful escape, a moment of creativity, and a chance for connection.

Dance is more than an art form; it’s a celebration of life itself. It encourages us to move, to feel, to express, and to connect in ways that enrich our well-being and sense of community. At Sage Advice, we encourage everyone to embrace the inspiration found through dance, to discover the rhythm that speaks to you, and to let it guide you towards a more vibrant, fulfilling life.

Dance reminds us that no matter our age, our bodies and spirits yearn for the expression, joy, and unity that movement brings. So, let’s dance — in studios, living rooms, community centers, and anywhere the music takes us. After all, life is a dance, and we are all invited to participate in its beautiful, ever-changing rhythm.

Photo credit: FG TRADE (iStock)
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06.06.24 | Healthy Eating

Creating an Indoor Herb Garden: A Guide for Beginners

In the journey toward vibrant living, integrating nature into our daily lives plays a crucial role. One delightful and practical way to embrace this integration is through the creation of an indoor herb garden. At Sage Collective, we recognize the therapeutic and culinary benefits of growing herbs indoors, making it an ideal activity for older adults seeking to enrich their environment and enhance their well-being.

Why Start an Indoor Herb Garden?
Indoor herb gardening offers numerous benefits. Not only does it provide easy access to fresh herbs that can transform your cooking, but it also improves indoor air quality and adds a touch of greenery that can elevate your mood and mental health. For older adults, tending to a garden can be a soothing activity that promotes mindfulness and fosters a sense of accomplishment.

Choosing the Right Herbs
The first step in creating your indoor herb garden is to select the right herbs. Consider what you like to cook and use regularly. Some popular and easy-to-grow herbs include:

  • Basil: A must-have for Italian dishes, fresh basil is versatile and grows well in pots.
  • Mint: Perfect for teas and desserts, mint is a vigorous grower, so it may need its own container to prevent it from overtaking other plants.
  • Parsley: A hardy herb used in many recipes, parsley can thrive indoors with adequate light.
  • Chives: With a mild onion flavor, chives are excellent in salads, soups, and other dishes.
  • Thyme: Ideal for adding depth to soups, stews, and roasts, thyme is a hardy herb that requires minimal care.

Setting Up Your Garden
Once you’ve selected your herbs, it’s time to set up your garden. Here’s how you can get started:

  • Containers: Each herb should be planted in a container with adequate drainage. You can use traditional pots, recycled containers, or even specialized indoor herb garden planters.
  • Soil: Use a high-quality potting mix that is designed for indoor plants. Avoid using garden soil, as it may not drain well enough and could contain pests.
  • Location: Most herbs require at least six hours of sunlight per day. A south-facing window is ideal, but if your space doesn’t get enough natural light, consider using grow lights.
  • Watering: Herbs generally like to be kept moist but not waterlogged. Ensure the soil is dry to the touch before watering again.

Caring for Your Herbs
Caring for your herbs is straightforward:

  • Pruning: Regular pruning promotes growth and prevents your herbs from becoming leggy. Always snip off the tips of your herbs, which encourages them to grow fuller and bushier.
  • Feeding: Use an all-purpose liquid fertilizer every few weeks to ensure your herbs get the nutrients they need to grow.
  • Monitoring: Keep an eye on your plants for signs of pests or disease. Early detection makes treatment easier and more effective.

Harvesting Your Herbs
Harvest your herbs regularly to encourage continued growth. Cut only what you need for cooking, always leaving enough leaves to allow the plant to continue to grow. Herbs are most flavorful when harvested in the morning after the dew has dried.

Creating an indoor herb garden is more than just a hobby; it’s a step toward a more sustainable and mindful way of living. At Sage Collective, we encourage exploring such enriching activities as they align with our commitment to promoting a holistic approach to wellness. An indoor herb garden offers a small but meaningful way to connect with nature, enhance your culinary skills, and contribute to a healthier home environment.

As you tend to your herbs, enjoy the simple pleasure of watching them grow and flourish, a daily reminder of nature’s cycles and the rewards of nurturing life.

Fresh basil. Credit: public domain image, CC0 license.
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05.30.24 | Arts & Culture

The Transformative Power of Storytelling: Insights from Donald Brooks Jones

In the captivating finale of Season 1 of the Sage Vibrant Living podcast, Donald Brooks Jones, an accomplished author and co-founder of Alchemy Media Publishing, delves into the profound art and impact of storytelling. His insights not only shed light on the mechanics of crafting compelling narratives but also underscore the significant role storytelling plays in preserving histories, sharing wisdom, and influencing lives. This episode is a treasure trove of guidance for anyone eager to tell their own stories, whether for personal reflection, to preserve family history, or to make a mark on the world.

Why Storytelling Matters
Storytelling is an intrinsic part of human culture and an essential tool in the fabric of social communication. As Jones points out, stories have the power to bridge generations, cultures, and geographies. They carry the weight of our histories and the flight of our imaginations, allowing us to convey complex ideas, emotions, and experiences across time and space. For older adults, storytelling becomes particularly poignant, serving as a conduit to pass on legacy, wisdom, and life lessons.

Starting Your Storytelling Journey
Jones emphasizes the importance of just beginning, no matter how daunting the task may seem. Starting the storytelling journey requires a blend of introspection and observation. It’s about finding those moments, relationships, and insights that have shaped who you are and how you see the world. This process not only helps to preserve personal and collective histories but also validates and celebrates individual life experiences.

Crafting Your Narrative
One of the key highlights from Jones’s discussion is the art of crafting your story. He breaks down various techniques that aid in structuring narratives that are not only coherent but also engaging. This involves establishing a disciplined writing routine, understanding the elements of good storytelling, and learning how to evoke emotions and connect with your audience. Whether it’s through setting a regular writing schedule or mapping out the plot and characters, the discipline of writing requires commitment and passion.

Overcoming Challenges
Every storyteller faces hurdles, from writer’s block to doubts about relevance or impact. Jones discusses practical alternatives and solutions to these challenges, such as using voice-to-text software for those uncomfortable with typing or engaging with writing groups for feedback and motivation. The key is to find what works for you and to keep moving forward.

Memoir vs. Autobiography
An important distinction that Jones highlights is between memoir and autobiography. Understanding this can help budding writers decide how to approach their own stories. While a memoir focuses on specific moments or periods in life, emphasizing emotional experiences, an autobiography is a more comprehensive chronology of the author’s life. This focus helps writers decide what to include in their stories and how to frame their narratives.

The Impact of Storytelling
Jones eloquently concludes that the value of storytelling extends beyond the pages on which words are written. Stories have the power to heal, connect, and inspire. They foster empathy, enhance understanding, and create communities. For the elderly, stories are not just reminiscences; they are the legacies that impart values and lessons for future generations.

As Donald Brooks Jones reiterates, storytelling is a powerful tool that each of us holds. It requires us to tap into our deepest selves and to share our truths with the world. For listeners of the Sage Vibrant Living podcast and readers of the Sage Advice blog, taking up storytelling can be a profoundly enriching endeavor—one that enriches both the storyteller and the audience alike.

This masterclass with Donald Brooks Jones isn’t just a lesson in storytelling; it’s an invitation to wield the power of your narrative to connect, educate, and inspire. Whether through a memoir, a blog, or bedtime stories to your grandchildren, remember that your stories are worth telling.

Credit: Reuben Juarez on Unsplash
Credit: Reuben Juarez on Unsplash
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05.23.24 | Health & Wellness

How to Make Your “Dash” Mean Something

In the grand scheme of life, our “dash” — the time between birth and death — is all we have to make a lasting impact. This concept, brought to life in this episode of the Sage Vibrant Living podcast series featuring Dr. Geneva Williams, serves as a powerful reminder that it’s never too late to create meaning and leave a legacy. Here are some key insights and actionable steps to help you make your “dash” mean something.

Embrace Lifelong Learning
One of the most inspiring aspects of Dr. Geneva Williams’ story is her commitment to lifelong learning. Despite the challenges and losses she faced, she continued to seek new knowledge and experiences. Embracing lifelong learning keeps our minds active, helps us adapt to change, and opens doors to new opportunities. Whether it’s enrolling in a course, picking up a new hobby, or simply staying curious, the pursuit of knowledge enriches our lives and expands our horizons.

Find Resilience Through Adversity
Dr. Geneva’s journey underscores the importance of resilience. Personal loss and adversity are inevitable, but how we respond to these challenges defines our path. Building resilience involves acknowledging our pain, seeking support, and finding strength in our experiences. It’s about turning setbacks into stepping stones and emerging stronger. By cultivating resilience, we not only navigate life’s difficulties but also inspire others with our courage and perseverance.

Pursue Your Passions
Your “dash” should be filled with activities and pursuits that ignite your passion. Dr. Geneva’s late-in-life venture into entrepreneurship and beauty pageants exemplifies this. Pursuing passions, no matter how unconventional or late in life, brings joy and fulfillment. Identify what excites you, set goals, and take actionable steps towards them. Whether it’s a career change, a creative project, or a personal milestone, pursuing your passions makes your life vibrant and meaningful.

Connect Through Storytelling
Storytelling is a powerful tool for connection and healing. Dr. Geneva found solace in sharing her story and listening to others. By sharing our experiences, we foster empathy, build communities, and create bonds. Storytelling allows us to reflect on our journeys, celebrate our triumphs, and learn from our challenges. It’s a way to honor our past, connect with others, and leave a legacy of wisdom and inspiration.

Stay Vibrant and Active
Vibrancy at any age is a cornerstone of making your “dash” mean something. Dr. Geneva’s dedication to promoting a vibrant lifestyle highlights the importance of staying active, engaged, and passionate. Physical health, mental well-being, and social connections are vital components of a vibrant life. Engage in regular physical activities, maintain a healthy diet, nurture relationships, and stay mentally stimulated. A vibrant life is a fulfilled life.

Take Action and Leave a Legacy
Finally, making your “dash” mean something requires action. Dr. Geneva’s call to action in the podcast is a powerful reminder to seize the moment and live with intention. Whether it’s through community service, mentoring, pursuing dreams, or advocating for causes you believe in, take concrete steps to make a positive impact. Reflect on what legacy you want to leave and actively work towards it.

Making your “dash” mean something is about living with purpose, passion, and resilience. Dr. Geneva Williams’ story is a beacon of inspiration, reminding us that it’s never too late to start anew and make a lasting impact. Embrace lifelong learning, find resilience through adversity, pursue your passions, connect through storytelling, stay vibrant and active, and take action to leave a legacy. By doing so, you fill your “dash” with meaning, leaving a positive and enduring mark on the world.

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05.05.24 | Community

Celebrating Older Americans Month 2024: “Powered by Connection”

May marks an important observance in the United States — Older Americans Month (OAM), a time dedicated to honoring the enduring contributions of older adults and advocating for their well-being. At Sage Collective, we treasure this observation that aligns with our 9 Ways of Vibrant Living and all we believe in.

Established in 1963 and evolving from “Senior Citizens Month” to “Older Americans Month” in 1980, this annual celebration not only highlights the achievements of older adults but also addresses the critical issues they face today. The theme for 2024, “Powered by Connection,” underscores the significant role that social connections play in enhancing the health and well-being of our senior population.

This year’s theme, “Powered by Connection,” invites us to reflect on how vital social relationships are to sustaining physical, mental, and emotional health. Studies have shown that older adults who maintain a network of relationships experience better health, live longer, and enjoy a higher quality of life. The theme encourages communities and individuals alike to foster these essential connections, combating the isolation that too often accompanies aging.

Strategies for Building and Maintaining Connections
As we continue to explore effective ways to build and maintain connections at Sage Collective, here are some of the most potent — and simple — strategies we suggest:

Community Engagement: Active participation in local events, clubs, or groups can provide consistent social interaction and a sense of belonging. Older adults are encouraged to engage in community centers, religious organizations, or hobby-based groups to expand their social circles.

Leveraging Technology: In an increasingly digital world, technology offers a lifeline to maintain and grow relationships. Whether it’s video calls with family, joining online forums, or participating in virtual events, technology can bridge the physical gap between friends and loved ones.

Volunteering: Offering time and skills to causes can connect older adults with like-minded individuals while contributing positively to the community. Volunteering is also a powerful way for older individuals to feel valued and purposeful.

Older Americans Month also serves as a platform for discussing and addressing the policy issues affecting the elderly. It’s an opportunity to advocate for improvements in healthcare, social security, and retirement benefits, ensuring that older adults can enjoy their later years with dignity and security.

A Call to Action
“Powered by Connection” is a call to action for every member of the community to ensure that our older adults are integrated, respected, and cared for. As we celebrate Older Americans Month, let us all commit to fostering these crucial connections. It’s about making sure that our communities are places where older adults can thrive and continue to contribute their vast knowledge and experience.

Let’s use this month to honor the immense value that older adults bring to our lives and our societies. By supporting their health and well-being through meaningful connections, we not only enhance their lives but also enrich our own.

To learn more about Older Americans Month, visit the Administration for Community Living website. Let’s celebrate this month by embracing our elders with open arms and open hearts, proving that community strength truly is powered by connection.

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04.18.24 | Arts & Culture

Introducing Sage Vibrant Living —The Podcast: A New Chapter in Storytelling

In an ever-evolving world where connection and engagement stand as pillars of humanity, Sage Collective proudly announces the launch of an exciting endeavor: Sage Vibrant Living — The Podcast. This innovative series is more than just an addition to our platform, Sage Advice®; it is a bold step towards redefining the narrative around aging and celebrating the vibrancy of life at every stage.

Why podcasting?
At Sage, we believe in challenging the status quo and embracing innovative ideas that enrich the lives of older adults and the community at large. Podcasting offers a radical new framework where older adults are valued and engaged…where they experience a life lived vibrantly. It is a medium that transcends traditional boundaries, allowing us to connect, engage, and explore humanity’s boundless knowledge collaboratively. From how-to discussions and cultural perceptions of aging to dynamic storytelling and housing as health insights, Sage Vibrant Living — The Podcast covers a broad spectrum of topics that resonates with our mission: to promote a better quality of life for older adults and those who support them, to extend the reach of Sage, and to foster a sense of community and belonging.

Listening to inspirational voices|
Our inaugural series boasts a lineup of interviews that promises to captivate, educate, and inspire our listeners. Each guest brings a unique perspective to the table, sharing their journey, wisdom, and insights into living a life full of purpose, health, and joy.

Episode 1: Barbara Bates | Fashion and Philanthropy: Join us as we dive into the world of fashion with Barbara Bates, exploring how she weaves philanthropy into her work and remains a relevant force in the industry.

Episode 2: Alfred Edmond Jr. | Money & Muscle: Alfred Edmond Jr. reveals his secrets to building wealth and health post-60, offering listeners a blueprint for financial and physical wellness.

Episode 3: Cheryl Woodson, MD | A Journey Towards Joy: Dr. Cheryl Woodson shares her expert insights on navigating the challenges of aging and finding pathways to joy and fulfillment.

Episode 4: Dwain Kyles & Emilie McKendall | Speak Up!: This empowering conversation with Dwain Kyles and Emilie McKendall underscores the importance of self-advocacy and standing up for others.

Episode 5: Dr. Geneva Williams | How to Make Your “Dash” Mean Something: Dr. Geneva Williams discusses the significance of the ‘dash’—the time between our birth and death—and how to make every moment count.

Episode 6: Don Jones | The Power of Storytelling: In this compelling episode, Don Jones delves into the transformative power of storytelling, highlighting its role in preserving history, fostering connections, and inspiring change.

As we embark on this journey, we invite you to join us. Whether you’re a listener, a storyteller, or a supporter, your involvement is crucial to the success of Sage Vibrant Living—The Podcast. Together, we can change the experience of growing older and celebrate a life lived vibrantly, one story at a time.

To access all the podcast episodes, simply click on the link here.

Sage Vibrant Living Podcast
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04.03.24 | Arts & Culture

Ta-Nehisi Coates: Mastering the Art of Storytelling Through Reflection and Reality

In the rich landscape of contemporary storytelling, few voices are as compelling and influential as that of Ta-Nehisi Coates. As part of our ongoing exploration into the art of storytelling, Sage Collective is delighted to spotlight Coates, a writer who masterfully weaves together narratives of race, identity, and the American experience with both grace and unflinching honesty. Coates’ work not only captivates readers but also invites profound reflection on the society we inhabit and the changes we aspire to see.

A Voice for Our Times
Ta-Nehisi Coates emerged as a powerful voice in American literature and journalism through his thought-provoking essays and books. His ability to articulate complex issues related to race and society has made him a pivotal figure in national conversations about racism, democracy, and historical memory. Coates’s writing is characterized by its depth of insight, lyrical quality, and the personal perspective he brings to bear on topics of public concern.

The Beautiful Struggle: A Personal Odyssey
In The Beautiful Struggle, Coates offers a vivid glimpse into his formative years in Baltimore, navigating the complexities of boyhood within the broader context of racial and economic strife. This memoir is not only a tale of personal growth and familial bonds but also a reflection on the broader struggle for Black identity and liberation. Coates’ relationship with his father, a figure steeped in the legacy of the Black Panther movement, serves as a powerful narrative thread, illustrating the impact of history and activism on individual lives.

Between the World and Me: An Intimate Letter
Between the World and Me expands Coates’ exploration of America’s racial history through a deeply personal lens, structured as a letter to his teenage son. This work captures the fears, hopes, and realities of being Black in America, weaving personal narrative with historical analysis. Coates’ use of the epistolary form creates an intimate conversation on race, identity, and the quest for understanding in a country marked by systemic injustice.

The Water Dancer: Merging Fiction with History
Coates’ foray into fiction with his debut novel, The Water Dancer, further cements his status as a versatile and imaginative storyteller. The novel combines historical elements with magical realism to tell a captivating story of slavery and resistance in the antebellum South. Through the eyes of his protagonist, Hiram Walker, Coates explores themes of memory, freedom, and the unbreakable bonds of family. The Water Dancer showcases Coates’ skill in creating rich, immersive worlds that illuminate the struggles and resilience of the human spirit.

We Were Eight Years in Power: Reflecting on an Era
In We Were Eight Years in Power, Coates assembles a collection of essays that chronicle the Obama presidency’s significance against the backdrop of America’s racial landscape. The title, echoing a lament from the Reconstruction era, frames the book as a meditation on the cyclical nature of racial progress and backlash in American history. Through essays that examine the cultural and political implications of Obama’s presidency and the subsequent rise of Donald Trump, Coates offers a critical analysis of the forces that shape American society and the ongoing struggle for racial justice.

Across his works, Coates’ storytelling artistry lies in his ability to blend the deeply personal with the sweepingly historical. His narratives invite readers into a space of reflection, challenging them to consider the intricate tapestry of American identity and the indelible impact of race on the nation’s conscience. Through his incisive analysis, lyrical prose, and unflinching honesty, Coates has crafted a body of work that is essential reading for anyone seeking to understand the complexities of contemporary America.

As we celebrate Ta-Nehisi Coates’ contributions to the art of storytelling, we are reminded of the power of literature to illuminate the darkest corners of society, to heal, and to inspire change. His voice is a clarion call for awareness, empathy, and action — a testament to the enduring strength of the written word to move hearts and minds.

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Ta-Nehisi Coates at The Anthology of Rap, 92YTribeca. Photo: 92YTribeca, Flickr Creative Commons, CC BY-NC 2.0 Deed
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