The Reframing Aging Initiative (RAI), a long-term social change endeavor designed to improve the public’s understanding of aging and the ways that older people contribute to society, has released a new short video, “Frame of Mind: Starting Strong, Avoiding Traps,” which highlights terms to avoid and themes to advance when communicating about aging.
“It’s so important to start strong with a shared vision,” said RAI Project Director Patricia D’Antonio, BSPharm, MS, MBA, BCGP, the vice president for policy and professional affairs at The Gerontological Society of America. “This way, we avoid focusing on traps like fatalism or negative framing.”
This video, the third in a series, is one of several resources available online from RAI, including the overview brief The Story of Reframing Aging and a Quick Start Guide with tips on themes to avoid and alternatives to advance. The website also houses the bimonthly newsletter Caravan, podcasts, and webinars.
“Instead of highlighting fantastic examples that don’t represent most older people, you can focus on realistic depictions of older adults,” said RAI Program Manager Laurie G. Lindberg. “This is a more engaging way to tell your story.”
The first video in the series, “Frame of Mind: The Why and How of Reframing Aging,” provides an overview of why we need to reframe aging and how small changes in how we talk about aging can lead to big impact. The second video, “Frame of Mind: Reframing Aging from Them to Us,” shows how to communicate more accurately about older people and the experience of aging.
The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) leads the initiative on behalf of the 10-member Leaders of Aging Organizations (LAO) collaborative. The LAO organizations are AARP, American Federation for Aging Research, American Geriatrics Society, American Society on Aging, Grantmakers in Aging, GSA, LeadingAge, National Council on Aging, National Hispanic Council on Aging, and USAging.
Support for the initiative comes from The John A. Hartford Foundation, Archstone Foundation, RRF Foundation for Aging, and The SCAN Foundation. Additional support is provided by E4 Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Disparities in Aging Rush University, Endowment for Health New Hampshire, The Fan Fox and Leslie R. Samuels Foundation, NextFifty Initiative, Point32Health Foundation, and San Antonio Area Foundation.
The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) is the nation's oldest and largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to research, education, and practice in the field of aging. The principal mission of the Society — and its 5,500+ members — is to advance the study of aging and disseminate information among scientists, decision makers, and the general public. GSA’s structure also includes a policy institute, the National Academy on an Aging Society.
The Reframing Aging Initiative is a social change endeavor designed to improve the public’s understanding of what aging means and the many ways that older people contribute to our society. This greater understanding will reduce ageism and guide our nation’s approach to ensuring supportive policies and programs for us all as we move through the life course. Founded in 2012, the initiative promotes the use of proven communication strategies, such as words and concepts to advance and those to avoid, to tell a more balanced and accurate story of aging.