n4a Honors Innovative  Programs that
Promote Successful Aging in America

For Immediate Release
Contact: Joellen Leavelle, jleavelle@n4a.org and (202) 872-0888

NEW ORLEANS—Today, the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) honored 48 innovative programs that have successfully helped older adults in communities around the country continue living in their homes and communities for as long as possible. The programs were winners of the 2019 n4a Aging Innovations and Achievement Awards, which were distributed at n4a’s 44th Annual Conference in New Orleans, LA. The annual awards program, supported by WellCare Health Plans, recognizes Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) and Title VI Native American aging programs that have implemented successful initiatives to support older adults, people with disabilities and caregivers.
“n4a is thrilled to present the Aging Innovations and Achievement Awards to a diverse and talented group of Area Agencies on Aging. We are happy to say that every corner of the country is represented in the 2019 awards this year” said Sandy Markwood, Chief Executive Officer of n4a. “The work these AAAs have done to deliver innovative and successful programs in their communities is remarkable. From programs that focus on healthy aging or transportation to nutrition or social engagement, we truly commend them all and urge them to continue creating great programs like the ones highlighted in this year’s 2019 Aging Innovations and Achievements Awards.” Markwood said.
Mark Henry, Director, LTC & HCBS Contracting at WellCare remarked, “WellCare is pleased to support n4a’s Aging Innovations and Achievement Awards program, which recognizes the work of Area Agencies on Aging and Title VI aging programs to serve older adults, people with disabilities and caregivers with innovative, successful programs designed to fill gaps in services and meet the critical needs of consumers in communities across the country. We salute this year’s winners for sharing their secrets to success with their peers, helping grow the AAA network’s capacity and responding to the incredible demographic changes ahead.”
n4a presented 32 Aging Achievement Awards and 16 Aging Innovations Awards to programs in a variety of areas, including caregiving, healthy aging, nutrition, technology, intergenerational programs and transportation. Descriptions of all 48 award-winning programs can be found in n4a’s awards book. The following three programs were the highest-scoring Innovations winners and received cash awards:
  • First place: Mobile Farmers’ Market, Central Plains Area Agency on Aging, Wichita, KS
    Description: Central Plains Area Agency on Aging (CPAAA) has worked with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment since May 2011 to distribute to eligible older adults Kansas Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (KSFMNP) check booklets valued at $30. People age 60 and older in the tri-county area are encouraged to purchase fresh produce, honey or herbs at local farmers’ markets. Additionally, through an innovative partnership with a local farmer, a mobile food truck visits older adults and senior centers to bring the fresh food right to clients. CPAAA works with service coordinators, senior centers and local county departments on aging to distribute the booklets and raise awareness of the program.
  • Second place: Fan Fair, KIPDA Area Agency on Aging and Independent Living, Louisville, KY
    Description: Recognizing the need for cooling devices in Louisville, an urban heat island where the temperatures are 10 degrees higher than in other parts of the county, KIPDA Area Agency on Aging and Independent Living worked with the Louisville Metro Office of Aging and Disabled Citizens to create a Fan Fair that has since become an annual event. Partnering with local media, businesses and citizens, fans are donated and distributed throughout the KIPDA region to individuals who have a disability or individuals older than 60.
  • Third place: Juniper—Your Health. Your Community., Metropolitan Area Agency on Aging, Arden Hills, MN
    Description: Juniper, a network of all seven Minnesota Area Agencies on Aging, community organizations, health care organizations and class leaders (volunteers and staff), is expanding the reach and effectiveness of evidence-based health promotion classes through the creation of a powerful technology platform and a nimble management services infrastructure that ensures scale and sustainability. Through Juniper’s statewide reach, Minnesota AAAs have become hubs for community health and wellness and have a new way to fund health promotion and disease prevention activities. 
National Association of Area Agencies on Aging
The National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) is a 501c(3) membership association representing America’s national network of 622 Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) and providing a voice in the nation’s capital for the more than 250 Title VI Native American aging programs. The mission of n4a is to build the capacity of its members so they can better help older adults and people with disabilities live with dignity and choices in their homes and communities for as long as possible. n4a.org
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USAging Fact: Learn about your peers’ work—and how it can fit into your agency’s goals! The AIA Awards recognizes successful and innovative programs that USAging members have developed to serve older adults. Get inspiration from our 2023 winners!