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Good-bye for Now

July 1, 2021 | Jenny Womack

This is a good-bye for now. As of July 1, 2021, the wAGING change blog will go on hiatus. As the primary writer for wAGING change over the past 8 months, I have enjoyed sparking conversations about issues related to aging that prompt us all to entertain new possibilities and …Read More

Legacy and Privilege

June 16, 2021 | Jenny Womack

I recently heard a radio interview with poet and writer Clint Smith, author of How the Word is Passed, who recounted that visiting the National Museum of African-American History and Culture with his grandparents led him to the realization that the history of slavery in the United States was not …Read More


June 3, 2021 | Jenny Womack

Legacy It is a word that has been assigned to the passage of wealth, to privilege granted those who have connections to important others, and to historical events that influence later generations. It is also frequently invoked as something to be considered and determined in later life: What legacy will …Read More

Voices from the Gulf Coast: Older Adults and Disaster in the Age of Climate Change

May 29, 2021 | Jenny Womack

To close out the month of May and our discussion about climate change and aging, we welcome guest blogger Sarah Torgeson, a doctoral student in American Studies at UNC-Chapel Hill. Sarah collects oral histories from older adults experiencing climate change, and as you will note below, has a very personal …Read More

Victims? Villains? – or Possibly Vanguards? The Role of Aging in Climate Change

May 21, 2021 | Jenny Womack

Earlier this month on the wAGING change blog, we discussed evidence of the inordinate vulnerability of older adults relative to climate change – particularly climate-related situations that may require evacuation or displacement, and those that affect food and water supplies.  Both U.S. and international agencies report disproportionate numbers of older …Read More

Feeling the Heat: Climate Change and Aging

May 10, 2021 | Jenny Womack

Each summer energy companies across the United States give away box fans to help consumers cool their residences – AND to help mitigate high levels of energy usage by supplementing cooling through increased air circulation. There are many ways to think about these programs, not all of them benign, if …Read More

Aging Emplaced: Expanding the Concept of Aging-in-Place

April 29, 2021 | Jenny Womack

The concept Aging-in-Place (AiP) has been for several decades a useful term to describe living through the end of life in places which are familiar and meaningful. It has in some realms been focused primarily on the home environment, spawning numerous business initiatives  and certifications for professionals who consult with …Read More

PARTNER SPOTLIGHT: Habitat for Humanity of Orange County NC

April 19, 2021 | Jenny Womack

As we continue our focus on home for the month of April, the UNC Partnerships in Aging recognizes Habitat for Humanity of Orange County NC in Chapel Hill, NC, for their innovative work in senior housing. In January of 2018, Habitat for Humanity International unveiled a nationwide initiative to honor …Read More


April 9, 2021 | Jenny Womack

I recently did an open online search cross-matching the terms ‘home’ and ‘older adulthood’. The top (non-commercial) hits using three different search engines were topics focused on health changes, aging-in-place, and in-home care providers. Not far down the list came recommendations for home safety, home exercise programs, and home modifications. …Read More

HOW WE LIVE AND LOVE: Sexual-minority older adults, intimacy and well-being

March 31, 2021 | Jenny Womack

A Research Brief from the UNC Partnerships in Aging Program Note: In this writing, the term sexual minority refers to LGBTQ identity, in alignment with the terminology used in some of the research referenced in the post. We acknowledge that the term ‘minority’ is contested, and embrace the work of …Read More

PARTNER SPOTLIGHT: SAGE Central North Carolina

March 26, 2021 | Jenny Womack

In the time predating the COVID pandemic (hard to remember, but there was a lot of good stuff going on), the UNC Partnerships in Aging Program partnered with SAGE of Central North Carolina (SAGE CNC) and the Orange County Department on Aging to sponsor a gathering of older people in …Read More

Intimate Aging Lives

March 7, 2021 | Jenny Womack

This post was originally intended for the commercially-driven February season of Valentine roses, chocolate and loving expressions of intimacy. But just like the alterations to that problematic celebration (Galentine’s Day and International Quirkyalone Day to name a couple)  writing about intimacy in older adulthood just kept feeling too nuanced to …Read More


February 3, 2021 | Jenny Womack

wAGING change was on hiatus during the month of January due to website updates. Thank you for checking in with us again for our February 2021 segments: Embodied Aging & Intimate Lives   When was the last time you skipped? Skipped in the hop-step, happy way children sometimes move themselves …Read More

At Year’s End: The Link Between Communication and Dying with Dignity

December 31, 2020 | Jenny Womack

For the month of December 2020, we have focused the wAGING change blog on dying with dignity, considering the topic primarily from the perspective of people who are thinking about their own dying process or that of a loved one. We occupy an especially poignant context for this conversation, however, …Read More

PARTNER SPOTLIGHT: End-of-Life Senior Resource Team

December 16, 2020 | Jenny Womack

On that day, the graduate students leaned forward a bit closer to hear what was being said; their eyes widened at the stories they were told, and their questions, though hesitant, were poignant and profound. The topic was death. In front of the class that day were five folks with …Read More

Winter Comes: Dying with Dignity

December 2, 2020 | Jenny Womack

I have had the privilege twice in my life of being at the bedside of loved ones as they drew their last breath. The journeys of these two people – one who died much too young and the other, who though old, died much too early – were examples of …Read More

CARING RESOURCE: Stories from the Diverse Elders Coalition

November 29, 2020 | Jenny Womack

As we close out the month of November 2020, a raging pandemic has changed long-standing holiday traditions of family and friends gathering to connect with one another over shared meals and visiting in each other’s homes. Distance between people extends far beyond the 6 feet of recommended physical space as …Read More

PARTNER SPOTLIGHT: The Marian Cheek Jackson Center for Saving and Making History

November 11, 2020 | Jenny Womack

In honor of November’s designation as National Family Caregiver Month, the UNC Partnerships in Aging recognizes the Marian Cheek Jackson Center for Saving and Making History (MCJC) in Chapel Hill, NC, for their soulful approach to eldercare, grounded firmly in their overall mission: To honor, renew, and build community in …Read More

Giving, Taking, Partnering, Caring…The Nuanced Language of Eldercare

November 4, 2020 | Jenny Womack

November is National Family Caregiver Month as recognized by Mental Health America: “This is definitely NOT a partnership!” said the woman with tired-looking eyes when I casually referred to her and her mother as ‘care partners’ during a meeting for family caregivers of older adults. My desire to use what …Read More


October 26, 2020 | Jenny Womack

Chapel Hill, NC by Dr. Jenny Womack, Campus Coordinator: UNC Partnerships in Aging Program  /     Every five years for the past two decades, the Orange County, North Carolina Department on Aging (OCDOA) has undertaken the task of strategic planning to optimize the county as a place where structures …Read More

Welcome to wAGING change!

October 21, 2020 | Jenny Womack

The mission of the UNC Partnerships in Aging Program (PiAP) is to facilitate vibrant University-Community collaboration, academic exploration, and creative solution-building to cultivate age-embracing people and communities. Toward those ends, we offer a new conversation born out of the chaotic context of 2020, housed here on our website and extending …Read More