Simmering issues important to all older Americans and their families, like health and financial security, may escalate to a full boil in many state Capitols in 2018. Facing these challenges and opportunities head-on, AARP is already exhaustively at work throughout the country, fighting for the issues that matter and driving an innovative agenda focused on commonsense solutions without the clutter of partisanship. Last year, AARP State Offices achieved huge successes, including new supports for family caregivers, greater access to home and community based services, and new ways to save for retirement. This year, we will continue to find ways to better enable more people to live and age as they choose. Among our top priorities: Supporting Family CaregiversAbout 40 million family caregivers represent the backbone of our country’s care system, providing hours of unpaid care to their loved ones every day. Over the past two years, AARP state offices have worked with state legislators and governors to enact more than 150 new laws that support these unsung heroes. In 2018, AARP will continue to support family caregivers and their loved ones by advancing laws and policies that:
For people in much of the country, temperatures are going down and utility bills are skyrocketing up. Home heating accounts for about 45 percent of the typical American household’s energy bill, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.
Let's hope you've recovered from Groggy Monday, the day after we turn our clocks ahead an hour (and lose an hour of sleep) for that convoluted practice called daylight saving time.
Low-income households often face challenges in keeping pace with rising energy costs. A recent study shows that despite federal assistance amounting to $3.4 billion, in the winter of 2011-12 low-income households were left struggling to pay $35.1 billion in energy costs.
A couple of years ago I wrote an article for AARP about simple ways to reduce the cost of heating your home. After reading it, my wife promptly added a number of the energy-saving tips I'd suggested to my "honey-do" list, including installing three programmable thermostats around our house.
Whether you're concerned about saving the environment or just interested in saving yourself a few bucks, equipping your house with a solar energy system is an interesting, albeit rather complicated, proposition to consider.
I had the privilege of working with a great team on REMODELING's Home for Life 2013, a virtual remodeling project featuring universal design and green remodeling principles. Although I wasn't specifically considering aging-in-place issues in my work on the project, in retrospect, green remodeling provides many benefits for older people and those with physical disabilities, as well as the average homeowner.
With plenty of sunny days still ahead - but with summer vacation nearing its sunset for kids and grandkids - here's a fun, inexpensive and educational project to do with the young people in your life during the dog days of summer. Build a simple solar oven (aka a "solar cooker") from repurposed household items. It will not only amaze and amuse kids of all ages, but it really works. And it will save you money and keep the heat out of the kitchen, unlike a conventional oven.
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