WASHINGTON, DC-AARP announced today the release of their
first African-American/Black Faith-Based Initiative Tool Kit. This self-service
tool kit was created by AARP experts in collaboration with faith leaders from
across the nation as a resource to aid in addressing the unique issues that
affect many African-Americans aged 50+ in the faith-based community.
"From our conversations with a number of faith leaders
from the Conference of National Black Churches, we learned they overwhelmingly
felt that there were not enough resources provided to older African-Americans
in their congregations on issues that mattered to them in the 21st
century," said Edna Kane Williams, Senior Vice President of
Multicultural Leadership at AARP.
According to a 2016 AARP
survey, 80 percent of African-American adults age 50 and older were
involved in religious or spiritual activities. The African-American/Black
Faith-Based Initiative Tool Kit was designed to harness this aspect of the
African-American cultural experience. The survey also implied that as adults
aged, they became less involved in religious/spiritual activities. The new tool
kit seeks to help engage those able to stay involved.
"It was very important for us to be involved with this
project because we noticed our members transitioning from the choir stand to
the sick and shut-in list," says Jacqueline Burton, President of the
Conference of National Black Churches. "We want our members to stay
involved as they age, and this toolkit can serve as a framework to help refresh
ministries that cater to older members."
"The ultimate goal of the Faith-Based Initiative Tool
Kit is to assist clergy in building and enhancing their ministries by helping
to educate their 50-plus parishioners on various topics
- from Medicare and Social Security to digital
literacy and healthy aging," Williams said.
The tool kit is divided into four issue sections:
Key Learnings: Data and statistics about African-Americans
in the United States and lists tips for organizing and sustaining an effective
Your Health: Information about adopting a healthy lifestyle,
care giving and an in-depth guide to understanding Medicare and Medicaid.
Your Wealth: Resources designed to help older adults
understand their finances. This section covers everything from keeping a
competitive edge in the workplace to understanding Social Security
Your Life: Solutions for adopting a healthy perspective
about aging and navigating life's transitions. Also includes an index of
resources that promote digital literacy and fraud protection.
The full African-American/Black Faith-Based Initiative Tool
Kit is available free online.
For more information about AARP's African-American
multicultural initiatives, visit AARP Black