The Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) is the designated Area Agency on Aging (AAA) that provides services to older adults and persons with disabilities in Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry and Rockdale counties, as well as the city of Atlanta. ARC supports healthy living and healthy aging programs throughout the metro Atlanta area by offering a range of services designed to ensure an improved quality of life.
One of the programs offered by the AAA is the “Living Well” suite of evidence-based workshops. These workshops are designed specifically for individuals who are challenged with a range of chronic health conditions, someone with diabetes, or a person who is interested in learning ways to prevent falls.
The National Council on Aging reports that the top ten chronic health conditions in adults age 65 and over are hypertension, high cholesterol, arthritis, kidney disease, heart failure, depression, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), Alzheimer and dementia, diabetes, and coronary heart disease. Eighty percent (80%) of this group will report having at least one chronic condition, and 68% has two or more chronic conditions. As for falls prevention, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that every 11 seconds, an older adult is treated in the emergency room for a fall, and every 19 minutes, an older adult dies from a fall.
ARC is available to provide members of the communities we serve with the necessary tools to help manage chronic health conditions and learn falls prevention techniques. We will help you to become comfortable with various behavior modifications that can help improve your confidence and make your day-to- day living more stress-free and enjoyable.
The “Living Well” workshops are hosted at community centers, senior centers, senior living locations and churches throughout the metropolitan area. The workshops can accommodate up to 16 individuals at a time and are led by two certified peer leaders.
Living Well Workshops
Healthy Changes for Living with Chronic Conditions (a.k.a. Stanford University’s Chronic Disease Self-Management Program/CDSMP)
This 6-week workshop teaches individuals how to cope with ongoing health conditions, such as arthritis, fibromyalgia, high blood pressure, asthma, COPD, high cholesterol, hypertension, diabetes, and more. Participants learn how to work with doctors, manage symptoms, set realistic goals, and embrace relaxation techniques and healthy eating. Groups meet once a week for 2 1/2
hours for six consecutive weeks.
Healthy Changes for Living with Diabetes (a.k.a. Stanford University’s Diabetes Self-Management Program/ DSMP)
This 6-week workshop helps individuals understand symptoms and associated complications of diabetes, the importance of medication adherence, and how to control sugar levels. Participants will also learn tips to maintain a healthy weight and techniques to manage anxiety, stress, and frustration. Groups meet once a week for 2 1/2 hours for six consecutive weeks.
Powerful Tools for Caregivers
This 6-week workshop helps caregivers learn to reduce stress, communicate their needs to family members, make tough caregiving decisions, and more. Groups meet once a week for 2 1/2 hours for six consecutive weeks.
A Matter of Balance
This 8-week workshop helps individuals reduce their fear of falling and increases activity among older adults. Participants reduce the number of injuries resulting from falls through practical lifestyle adjustments. Groups meet once a week for 2 1/2 hours for eight consecutive weeks.
For more information contact: Lynda Conner at (470) 378-1630 or by email at
While you consider which of the self-management programs would be best for you, take a look at the following thoughts to help you with your day-to-day routine.
“A Therapist’s Prescription for Better Mental Health”
Treat yourself with kindness
Say “no” when you need to
Don’t compare yourself to others
Embrace your mistakes, they don’t define you
Be truly present
Make fun a priority
Savor good memories
Clear out the physical and emotional clutter
Move your body more
Put your phone down; connect with the people you’re with
By Sharon Martin, LCSW
Visit Sharon’s site for more: