Centenarians to be celebrated in Georgia

A state agency wants to locate centenarians living in Georgia.

The Georgia Department of Human Services (DHS) is searching for Georgians who will turn 100 or older in 2012.

The Division of Aging Services of DHS will honor the centenarians on their birthdays, with a certificate of recognition and a thank you for their contributions to Georgia’s families and communities, according to Lisa Marie Shekell, Director of Legislative Affairs and Communications Department of Human Services.

“Life is to be celebrated and we wanted to take this opportunity to honor members of the aging community that have contributed to the rich history of our state and have reached a milestone in their life that very few people are able to obtain,” said Clyde L. Reese, DHS Commissioner. “This great state would not be what it is today without the wisdom and care of Georgia’s aging community.”

Relatives and friends of centenarians may request a certificate by clicking “Honor a Centenarian” at http://aging.ga.gov. The Division of Aging Services must receive requests at least 45 days in advance of the honoree’s birthday to ensure timely delivery.

“We want to congratulate and honor a group of special Georgians whose contributions are immeasurable and will benefit generations for years to come,” Reese said. “In gratitude, we celebrate their gifts of wisdom, work, and care in building Georgia’s communities.”

Georgia’s aging network offers dozens of ways for people to say “thank you” to older adults in their communities. Volunteers may deliver meals, provide rides to doctors and grocery stores, help with senior center activities, get trained to educate people about Medicare, organize service days and public awareness events in their workplaces and faith-based organizations, and more, continued Shekell.

“Georgia’s centenarians have contributed to the community and culture throughout most of their lives,” said Dr. James Bulot, Director of DHS Division of Aging Services. “I encourage communities to recognize older adults as life mentors and to further develop those informal relationships that enrich both the young and old.”

To learn about volunteer opportunities, services for older adults, and support for caregivers, call the Division of Aging Services toll-free at (866) 55-AGING (552-4464) or visit online at http://www.aging.ga.gov.