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2017 Top-Rated Nonprofit

National Council on Aging

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Centers to Support the Independence of Specific Populations, Civil Rights, Human Services, Seniors, Seniors Rights

Mission: NCOA's mission is to improve the lives of millions of older adults, especially those who are struggling

Results: Last year, NCOA significantly improved the health or economic security of nearly 500,000 older adults and helped struggling seniors apply for and receive over $568 million in annual benefits to help them pay for food, medicine, utilities, and more.

Target demographics: older adults

Direct beneficiaries per year: nearly 500,000 older adults

Geographic areas served: communities across the country

Programs: benefits access, job training, chronic disease self-management, falls prevention, and advocacy

Community Stories

7 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 5

NCOA has help the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) keep informed on legislation that affects the program. We appreciate all of the work NCOA does not only for SHIP but for all of older adults across the nation.
Shannon Jones, TN SHIP Director


Client Served

Rating: 5

This organization is a fantastic resource to seniors in that it provides services and information to improve the quality of people's lives.


Client Served

Rating: 5

My participation in the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP), a federally funded senior employment training program administered by the National Council on Aging (NCOA), implemented through our local Community Action Program, quite literally saved my life. As a married, working professional enjoying two incomes, feeling secure with a healthy retirement plan and personal savings, I never thought I'd find myself in a situation where I did not know where the money for my next meal would come from or how I would pay the bill to keep my electric on in the middle of one of the coldest winters in decades. Things happen. Life happens. Health problems, medical bills, the loss of my husband to cancer, a major down turn in the economy. I lost everything - my spouse, my home, my retirement that I had invested in a small business that I had to close when several larger, local companies closed and laid off workers. That's when I found NCOA - SCSEP. I became a staff participant in the program, earning enough to eat healthy and maintain safe living conditions. As a staff participant, I helped other seniors in similar situations obtain training, and through the many other related services and web-based tools provided by NCOA, such as resume building tools, job searches, free online job skill courses, and information about benefits available to seniors, helped many of our participants find permanent employment. As for me, my NCOA - SCSEP participatioin helped me to network, gain additional skills, and make contacts that led to a permanent position. I am back working in the profession I love. I now have a comfortable income and a renewed self-esteem and self worth. Thank you NCOA - SCSEP!

Client Served

Rating: 1

Buncombe county did a horrible job serving my parents. They kept promising us help but never followed through. Many many phone call messages went unanswered. Even when I talked with the manager she never helped. My parents are nearly 80 years old and I am appalled at how they were treated.

Comments ( 1 )


jean.vanryzin 09/17/2014

Hello Client112. Thanks for writing. NCOA does not operate an office in Buncombe County. Perhaps you could tell us the name of the agency you worked with? We would be more than happy to put you in contact with a local organization that could help your parents. Please contact us at newsletters@ncoa.org.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I learned through NCOA that I could be getting my medical expenses itemized and deducted for SNAp. I had fought for 2 years in my state but kept getting denied, being told that wasnt true. Finally, NCOA put in me in touch with advocates in my state who have been successfully fighting my case with me and helping me win my retroactive benefits and arranging my benefits going forward. The state has already settled several months worth of my case, but we are still having issues getting the rest settled so my advocate is still diligiently working with me and the people in the district and regional offices and on the apeals bureau to resolve it as quickly as possible. The first day I received the first portion of my settlement I went to the grocery store and was able to buy food and eat for the for the first time in a week! Without NCOA'a help, I dont think I would ever have been successful in winning my appeal even though I knew I was right. Thank you so much!

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was a supervisor for a NCOA training site for about 10 years at a non profit organization working with homeless men and helped by assisting both seniors sent or those referred to get employment. Our non profit also hired two of our NCOA participants one to cook and act as front desk receptionist and the other to grade paperwork and help in keeping the client files. They both were excellent and dependable workers. After being laid off from the non profit I found myself in need of the services of NCOA's Program. They have allowed me to get formal computer training, to take and assist in job rediness classes as well as take advantage of TBE Training that I would not have been able to afford to have attended. Being in this program has helped me keep my house because I lost my job of 15 years being over 55 and legally blind it is difficult to find employment. This program is essential in giving low income seniors the need training and support needed to compete in future employment. I consider myself a lifetime learner and love this program for it does. Thanks to Brenda Head and all Middle Tennessee NCOA that serves 15 counties in Tennessee and thanks to the National Office who assures that many communities can better support low income seniors who must continue to work to support themselves. They do a great job.


Client Served

Rating: 5

NCOA is the "go to" organization for all things related so seniors and health insurance for elders and the disabled. They are involved in food security, economic security, housing, wellness and a host of other issues, including health insurance and public benefits, that can be of assistance. Benefits CheckUp is a great resource.