Scholarship Recipient Shares Her Experience
Angie Whitehurst is a fighter. Every day she manages the challenges of her fibromyalgia, a chronic pain disorder. She is a stroke survivor. She is currently unemployed and has no source of income. She is a caregiver for her aging parents, who are both in their 80s. And, at 62, Angie worries about how to age successfully.
But, Angie doesn’t see these challenges as obstacles. “Obstacle is a bad word,” Angie says. “Obstacle, when you say it, it’s like a wall. A stop sign. A red light. So, instead, I say it’s just another thing I have to dance around because that means movement.”
And now, thanks to your generosity, Angie has the tools to keep on dancing.
Angie is a scholarship recipient for the Health, Wellness, and Aging series in Iona’s Take Charge/ Age Well Academy. Now in its second year, Iona’s innovative educational program offers “younger older” adults a robust curriculum of workshops and seminars. It includes aging-in-community specialists who share expert advice, wellness coaching, guidance on critical decision-making, and information on planning for the future through a supportive and open environment.
For Angie, the course has been a saving-grace, offering her vital information and explanation when it comes to navigating the medical system, providing a welcoming community of peers, and reminding her that it’s OK to take a break from her own life stresses.
“It’s therapeutic,” says Angie. “I feel like I’m around people I’m connected to because their experiences can benefit me, and my sharing can benefit them too. It’s uplifting.”
Like many other caregivers, Angie used to become discouraged or frustrated when trying to find resources and often she did not even know where to begin. After Take Charge/Age Well ℠, however, Angie feels confident. “This program has helped me learn who to go to and who to talk to,” she says.
Angie hopes she will be able to continue to benefit from your generosity and enjoy Iona’s breadth of resources and knowledge. “Iona is a unique environment,” she says. “It’s welcoming; it’s warming. I want to keep coming here!”