People in the 55+ age group are “bombarded” with change, according to Alicia Thomas, a licensed mental health therapist and co-facilitator of the “Meaningful Living” group, launching on Nov. 4. These changes include losing loved ones, ending careers, empty-nesting, physical or health issues, and so many other things that can severely impact people’s lives.

To help individuals in the over-55 age group dealing with these changes, an online program “to promote meaningful living into old age” has been created through a collaboration between Concordia University, Oak Park and River Forest Townships, and the Oak Park Community Mental Health Board.

The free eight-week group begins on Nov. 4 and will be run entirely on Zoom. Each meeting is from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Participants can attend as many sessions as they like, but they’re encouraged to join the online meetings regularly.

The program was initiated by graduate students from Concordia University and, according to River Forest Township Supervisor Carla Sloan is “a great collaboration between the townships and Concordia University, specifically the counseling center. It provides a practicum for the grad students in counseling. It also provides free mental wellness counseling for seniors age 55-plus. This is a group with unique mental wellness needs that are not often met.”

Although the program is free, participation is limited. Contact Alicia Thomas at 312-869-2226 to reserve a spot.

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