Current Initiatives

Supporting Dialogue

PiAP convenes and supports public conversations that challenge us to reconsider our aging experience, and our death.  For example, we recently supported a balanced panel discussion on Death with Dignity that was attended by over 400 people.

Aging in Community: Planning for Our Future

Led by Orange County’s Department on Aging with support from the Partnerships in Aging Program, Aging in Community is a series of community conversations about key issues related to transportation and housing for older adults. In the past, we have hosted conversations to learn about and discuss Complete Streets initiatives and Long Term Care. We continue host events to develop ideas for new housing initiatives and to create age-friendly environments.

Community members discuss long term care

Community members discuss long term care. May 19th 2016.

Interprofessional Education in Geriatrics

Over 235 UNC students from 10 health disciplines (nursing, medicine, social work, dentistry, dental hygienist, pharmacy, PT, OT, nutrition, and speech and language pathology) will work in teams to explore complex social and medical issues common to older adults.  Along the way, students will learn about each their classmates’ educational preparation, typical practice environments, and dispel common myths and stereotypes.


Students from different disciplines participating in care planning for an older patient

Works in Progress

Orange County Master Aging Plan

The Orange County Department on Aging kicked off the next 5-year Master Aging Plan.  The Partnerships in Aging program is providing consultation and technical assistance to this initiative.  The cornerstone of the Master Aging Plan is broad-based citizen input.  During public meetings held in July and August 2016, at 13 locations around the County, we heard from over 60 people. An electronic survey was distributed to people of all ages throughout the County, and Janice Tyler, Director of the Department on Aging, conducted multiple interviews with County leaders and stakeholders.

To advance the Master Aging Plan process, Orange County has become the first North Carolina county to join AARP’s Network of Age-Friendly Communities. As such, we are now part of a nation-wide effort to transform our neighborhoods and communities into age-friendly places.

Never in modern history have we lived this long. Orange County is already a great place to age, but we can make it even better. We want to continue to develop new models in all areas, including how we live, how we die, and how we connect with each other on a daily basis.  The Orange County Board of Commissioners voted to accept the 2017-2022 Master Aging Plan on May 16th.

Pocket neighborhood

An example of an elder friendly neighborhood equipped with accessible housing and green space

Fighting Ageism:  Be Bold, Claim Old
Be Bold Claim Old Program Director Amy Gorely

Amy Gorely, Program Director of the Be Bold, Claim Old Campaign.

The project, led by Amy Gorely, VP of Strategy and Outreach at Carolina Meadows, challenges ageist views of youth as the gold standard.  The campaign suggests that we all get to decide how “old” is valued.  It starts with accepting and celebrating every age.  UNC’s  Partnerships in Aging Program is collaborating to advance and disseminate the campaign.  Be Bold, Claim Old was launched in a two minute TED-inspired talk.  The campaign aims to spark a new way of thinking about OLD. To learn more about the Be Bold Claim Old campaign, click here. To watch a short video presentation about the Be Bold, Claim Old Campaign, click here.

Beyond Clinic Walls


Beyond Clinic Walls partners UNC students with older adults in the local community who prefer to live in their own homes despite various health and social issues. Students are formed into interdisciplinary teams and visit their clients monthly throughout the academic year.  Students have the opportunity to engage with their client’s personal, social, and physical environments, often learning about the gaps in services some people in our community face. Collaborating with Carol Woods Retirement Community, UNC’s Student Health Action Coalition, and the Orange County Department on Aging, the Partnerships in Aging Program provides the organizational structure and resources to foster and support the development of meaningful relationships between student volunteers and their clients. Click here to learn more about the program.

Supporting Eldercare Services

Through the Human Resources Department, UNC employees have the good fortune to have access to robust Elder Care resources.  For employees seeking a “one stop shop” for guidance regarding caregiving, advance care planning, insurance, and even how to bring up difficult subjects, click here to view these top-notch services.

Past Initiatives

Long Term Care Collaborative

Led by Orange County’s Department on Aging, community advocates, and the Partnerships in Aging Program, seven long term care organizations participated in a year long effort to improve the quality of their care.  The final theme was THE COMFORT ZONE and focused on palliative care and everyday joys for clients and staff.  At the end of the year, participating organizations were eligible for a Quality Service Award and were recognized by the the Board of County Commissioners.


Orange County Long Term Care leaders goofing around at a recent meeting of the Collaborative.

Living Long Lives

IMG_1478 TM

Photographer Chris Adamczyk will explore the passion and vibrancy of living a long life. What do we do with passion and meaning? How do we address abilities that have become diminished? How do people of different ages perceive the aging experience?  The photographic exhibit will be ready for display in Fall 2016. UNC students from Comparative Literature are assisting Chris with the narrative to support her photographs.

Courage Cocktail Radio Series: Long Lives Long View


Partnerships in Aging is excited to work with the Courage Cocktail Radio Hour. Producer and host, Lee Ann McClymont, has created a five-part radio series broadcasting over WCOM LPFM, Chapel Hill/Carrboro, NC, which will feature five, hour-long radio shows examining current experiences in aging in Orange County through the lens of innovators, academics, volunteers, and artists. The series will feature live interviews with guests of differing backgrounds all of whom share a common interest in leading vibrant and productive lives throughout the entire course of their lifespans. Click here for a description of each episode plus links to the podcasts!