There are 47 million seniors currently living in the U.S. and that number will continue to rise as more Baby Boomers enter the demographic every year. In Alabama, the number of those over the age of 65 stands at 14 percent of the population and is projected to almost double in the next 15 years. According to Todd Harvey, partner in the Birmingham law firm of Burke Harvey and title sponsor of the first Senior Spirit Expo, there has never been a better time for an Expo geared toward those over the age of 55. “One of the great privileges I’ve had practicing law is to focus on issues important to senior citizens and to represent them in a variety of different cases,” he said. “Often seniors simply don’t know about the resources and options that are available to them. Bringing everything together under one roof is an easy way to help provide information that our seniors may need to help them live their best lives.”
The Senior Spirit Expo will be held on Saturday, February 16, 2019, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency Birmingham-Wynfrey Hotel at the Riverchase Galleria. The free, one-day event will offer information and resources about senior health and wellness, nutrition, fitness, home improvements, activities, lifestyle and aging, educational workshops, guest speakers and special entertainment throughout the day. “There has never been an event like this in our area before, so we encourage everyone to come out, even if you are not a senior,” Harvey said. “Chances are you have elderly grandparents or parents who could benefit from the information and resources we are offering.”
Seniors are a vulnerable segment of society and are often the target of elder abuse. “As the population in the U.S. ages, financial fraud and abuse is becoming a tremendous problem. We want to educate seniors in an effort to prevent this from happening,” Harvey said. “In addition to financial fraud, we have also seen many sad cases involving physical and mental abuse of seniors by folks who are charged with providing them with care. This just should not happen.” Breakout sessions during the Senior Spirit Expo will deal with all these issues and more. “As folks grow older and their needs change, it is important for them to come up with a plan,” Harvey explained. “Important questions must be asked. For example, will I be able to afford the level of care I need? Will I be able to stay in my own home or will I need to consider an assisted living facility?” The ultimate goal of the Senior Spirit Expo is to give seniors answers to these questions and more. For more information on the event, visit www.seniorspiritexpo.com.
-Ann Marie Harvey