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Wider Horizons

Lifelong Learning & Quality Care

Talk about life beginning at 50! WHYY's Wider Horizons Service addresses the needs and interests of our region's "baby-boomers" and retirees by focusing on creativity, social engagement, caregiving and quality of care.

As its name suggests, Wider Horizons reached ever farther this fiscal year by inspiring boomers to civic engagement and leadership through its partnership with the regional Coming of Age initiative; by addressing the health threats of obesity and heart disease; and by securing a series of grants to further expand programming in the region.

Marc Freedman, CEO of Civic Ventures, and Purpose Prize winner Rev. W. Wilson Goode

Specifically, WHYY was awarded a National Center for Outreach station grant of $10,000 around THE WAR, Ken Burns' 14-hour PBS World War II documentary series. As a result, WHYY preserved the World War II stories of more than 150 Delaware Valley veterans, many of whom have since passed away.

Wider Horizons partnered with retirement communities to put digital television equipment directly into facilities to provide WHYY programming for their in-house TV channels Pennswood Village in Newtown, PA, Cokesbury Village (PUMH) in Hockessin, DE and Freedom Village in Coatesville, PA benefited from Wider Horizons Partnerships which provided program content relevant to their residents' needs, on-site events with WHYY personalities, as well as video production training, and on-air underwriting opportunities on TV12.

WWII Veterans

On the health front, WHYY offered local programming and outreach across our broadcast channels around Remaking American Medicine, the national PBS series on patient safety and quality of care. WHYY produced the companion national public radio special, Healing Healthcare, hosted by Dr. Dan Gottlieb. A television segment featured the University of Pennsylvania Medical School's LEAPP program, which matches incoming medical students with people with chronic illness.

WHYY's Heart Healthy Philadelphia, featuring healthy cooking tips with Chef Jim Coleman, localized the PBS Take One Step specials on obesity and heart disease. This initiative also included community cooking demonstrations at WHYY and NewCourtland Elder Services.

WHYY's Caring Community coalition of more than 100 organizations was chosen as one of the 20 coalitions nationwide to participate in the National Alliance for Caregiving "Building Sustainable Caregiving Coalitions" project, which included webinars and other events about service delivery, policy and caregiver legislation.

Michael Vitez, staff writer at The Philadelphia Inquirer, was the key note speaker at WHYY's 7th annual Wider Horizons Forum around the Hospice Foundation of America's annual Living with Grief Teleconference whose topic was "Before and After the Death." Dr. Dan Gottlieb, host of WHYY-FM's Voices in the Family, moderated a panel of families and professionals who have "lived the experience" of loss and grief.

Dr. Dan Gottlieb

Coming of Age, the regional initiative to help boomers and others 50+ make fulfilling life transitions through civic engagement, lifelong learning and community leadership, continued its successful series of Boomervision!(R) author lectures and community dialogues at WHYY's studios, which are taped for the Wider Horizons digital channel, underwritten by AARP-PA. On October 18, PBS financial planner Jonathan Pond addressed an evening audience following the taping at WHYY of his latest public television pledge special based on his new book The Boomer's Guide to a Great Retirement. Jeri Sedlar, co-author of Don't Retire, Rewire! spoke on finding compelling work opportunities after retirement. Featured guests and topics under the theme Join the Revolution! included "Igniting the Revolution" with AARP CEO Bill Novelli, author of 50+ Igniting a Revolution to Reinvent America; "The New Sexual Revolution" featuring a panel looking at physiology, psychology and relationships; "Long Live the Revolution" with assisted living guru Bill Thomas; and "The New Revolutionaries" Marc Freedman, CEO of Civic Ventures, and Purpose Prize winner Rev. W. Wilson Goode

A partnership of WHYY Wider Horizons, the Temple University Center for Intergenerational Learning, United Way of SE PA and AARP-PA, Coming of Age was evaluated by the Bridgespan Group for potential national replication. Work is underway to replicate Coming of Age in Delaware, in partnership with key organizations in the aging field.