As Amy Henderson visited nursing homes and assisted living facilities in Portland, Ore., for several years, one common theme stood out: Residents had nothing to do all day.
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Last year, Henderson decided to turn that idle time into something productive. She started the Geezer Gallery, a nonprofit gallery that encourages older adults to create their own art, which is sold there and online.
"We know from research that older adults who participate in creative arts reap physical, emotional, mental and social benefits," says Henderson, 40. The gallery currently includes paintings, sculptures and ceramics by more than 50 older adults.
Henderson recently was honored for her work by the Red Dress Society, which recognizes women making a difference as social entrepreneurs.
Judi Hasson is a freelance writer in McLean, Va.