Monthly Scoop: February 2021

Thank you to Ryan Chin, Founder, CEO Emeritus, and Chief Policy Officer of Optimus Ride, a self-driving vehicle technology company. His talk at our February meeting was inspiring, informational, and able to allay hesitation about actually getting into a car without a driver! Already tested in an elder community in California, Ryan said the way to get older adults willing to use autonomous vehicles is to provide knowledge, use low speed technology, and encourage advocacy for its use. For those interested in learning more, Ryan is happy to hear from you at


  • AARP Massachusetts and the Center for Social and Demographic Research on Aging at UMASS Boston jointly lead the Task Force to End Loneliness and Build Community. This collaborative effort to end social isolation has developed a community resource guide that provides ideas for strengthening social connectedness. Anyone interested in getting involved can contact to learn more.
  • AgeStrong Boston can assist those without internet access in getting appointments for vaccinations. Somerville-Cambridge Elder Services offers transportation to vaccine appointments for older Somerville and Cambridge residents. Call 211 for assistance.
  • Boston Bridge is always interested in hearing from members who have either begun a successful start-up business or whose organization has a particularly successful program. If you are interested in presenting at one of our monthly meetings, please contact and the Board will be happy to consider that for a future meeting.
  • If your organization is concerned about social isolation in older adults, contact a new start-up organization called The Connected Foundation, whose mission is to help build meaningful lives and alleviate isolation.


  • Philippe Saad, an Associate Principal at DiMella Shaffer Architecture firm, and a great friend and mentor of Boston Bridge since its inception, is the innovative force behind the designing of an LGBTQ older adult housing facility at the former William Barton Rogers Elementary School in Hyde Park. This housing creates an intentional community for LGBTQ-older adults in Boston, a city that is becoming Age-Friendly. Read this article and watch the mixed media documentary listed below to gain a greater picture of the need for housing for this community of older adults.  
  • What does it mean to say “Old is the new new” or “The retirement of retirement”? Is it the end of ageism? Does it create opportunities for jobs, or a loss of jobs for some? These questions are addressed in this article by Media Village, whose goal is to advance diversity.
  • Discriminatory and bias training is common in the corporate, academic, and political world today, but is it inclusive enough? Read this article about a college professor who noticed that ageism was not even mentioned in required bias training
  • Humana Inc., a Health Insurance Company and its subsidiary, Partners in Primary Care (PIPC), is committed to increasing its services to older adults by opening more primary care centers in the US. Considering the increases in the older population and the stagnant growth of geriatricians, this article by Home Health Care News brings welcome news to caring for older adults
  • A recent overview of the careers represented by Boston Bridge members showed a surprising number of entrepreneurs. In this time of the pandemic, there has never been a better time to pitch your start-up. Providing advice and examples, here are some tips for entrepreneurs with existing start-ups or new ideas. In addition, here are five strategies for building an entrepreneur support group that can decrease the loneliness of a new business and increase profits.
  • The Milken Institute for the Future of Aging and Next Avenue have partnered to produce a series on COVID and the Future of Aging. Joe Coughlin, Director of the MIT AgeLab – and known to all of us in his role as a generous Boston Bridge benefactor – shows us how technology has provided positive Covid-19 coping mechanisms for older adults.
  • The Mayo Clinic has updated their 2013 guide to dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. It includes the clarification of myths that people believe about dementia that can further stigmatize those who have been diagnosed.
  • Should the end of life be its own life stage? That is the opinion expressed by Deborah Carr, a professor and Chair of the Sociology Department at Boston University and explored in the Annual Review of Sociology. Read how an end-of-life stage differs from an old-age stage.
  • Financial relief for small businesses and families without work has been in the forefront of the news. But relief for funeral expenses during the pandemic has been less publicized.  CAKE, an online end of life planning platform, explains the details of the COVID-19 Funeral Assistance Act passed by Congress in May, 2020.

Mixed Media

  • Let’s try again: In the January Scoop, we listed a film called Some Kind of Heaven about The Villages, a retirement community in Florida. Receiving acclaim at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival, and produced by the New York Times, it was due to be aired by AARP. Unfortunately, the viewing had been cancelled. Now Some Kind of Heaven is on YouTube or for rent on Amazon Prime. Watch and decide – is this prototype for retirement living a more positive or negative development?    
  • Home Instead, a Home Care Company, has created an educational webinar series exploring many issues of aging. Their first webinar episode, called Preparing to Care: A Roadmap for the Future, provides information for families about why it is important to plan ahead and not wait for a crisis to occur.
  • Not Another Second is an LGBTQ documentary that is also part of an art installation that premiered at the end of January 2021 in Brooklyn, NY. It tells the story of older adults and their often tortuous road to becoming who they were meant to be. In conjunction, read the article above about LGBTQ housing in Boston that allows same-sex couples to live as they choose.

Call to Action