Whether family or a paid professional, one of the roles of a caregiver is to help seniors remain both physically and mentally active. One way to remain mentally sharp is to be a continuous learner and find new subjects on which to study. July 24 provides seniors an opportunity to learn or recall about an American mystery that remains unsolved as the country celebrates National Amelia Earhart Day.
A lady of firsts
Amelia Mary Earhart was born on July 24, 1897, in Atchison, Kansas. She was and still is one of the world’s most celebrated aviators. Earhart was a pacesetter for women in aviation. Her fascination with planes began after her first cross-country flight as a teenager with her parents. She purchased her own plane in 1921 and became licensed two years later in 1923.
In 1928, Earhart was aboard a plane traveling from Canada to Wales, becoming the first woman to cross the Atlantic Ocean. Four years later, on May 20, 1932, Earhart made a flight from Harbour Grace, Newfoundland to Londonderry, Ireland on her own in under fifteen hours, becoming the first female aviator, or aviatrix, to pilot a plane solo across the Atlantic Ocean. In 1935, she became the first aviatrix to fly solo from Hawaii to California, traveling 2,408 miles – longer than the trip between the United States and Europe. She also was the first to fly from Los Angeles to Mexico City.
In 1937, during an attempt to travel around the world, the plane flown by Earhart along with her navigator Fred Noonan disappeared and was believed to be lost at sea. Her disappearance remains a modern-day mystery with theories that Earhart remained alive on a deserted island or was captured by the Japanese.
A life of service and activism
While the focus of Earhart’s life’s work was in the skies, she also made service an important part of her work. Early in her life, she cared for soldiers injured in World War I and became a nurse’s aid in Canada. She was a social worker at Denison House, a settlement home for immigrants. Earhart was also influential in promoting equal rights and encouraging women to reject the social norms of the time. She was a member of the National Woman’s Party and helped to form The Ninety-Nines, an organization for female pilots.
Celebrating the life and legacy of Amelia Earhart
There are many ways caregivers can use National Amelia Earhart Day to aid their seniors. Caregivers and seniors can:
- Play detective: Research and print out information to review on the Earhart disappearance creating a “case file” for the senior to work and create their own theories.
- Read aloud: Caregivers and seniors can read aloud to one another, helping to keep seniors’ reading and listening skills sharp.
- Storytelling: Depending on age, the caregiver can have the senior share any recollections of the Earhart case, or the time in history.
- Discuss Earhart as an activist: Earhart worked for social change. Caregivers and seniors can discuss issues the senior would like to see changed and work on small ways to make change happen.
- Discuss Earhart as a positive figure: Amelia Earhart was a trendsetter who did not let social norms for women affect how she lived her life. Lead a discussion on how can seniors not let age affect how they live their lives.
Celebrating Amelia Earhart Day can be a good opportunity for you and your senior loved one to spend time together outside of the caregiving bubble. If you would like more time to spend doing fun activities with your aging parent, consider a home care provider to assist your loved one with the tasks of daily living that can hinder your ability to spend quality time together. Tasks like bathing, light housework, laundry, and getting up and down the stairs safely can be done by an experienced caregiver from a home care agency, offering you more time to make memories with your aging senior.
Are you or a loved one considering hiring Home Health Care in Herriman, UT? Please talk to the friendly staff at December Rose Senior Care at Home. Providing Home Care in Highland, Utah and Surrounding Communities. 801-427-ROSE (7673)
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