By Arnold Rose
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Another trend which is perhaps of even greater importance for planning services to the elderly has received less public attention. In the past two decades the numbers in the age groups from seventy on and especially between seventy-five and eighty-five have been increasing at a faster rate than the sixty-five through sixty-nine group. 5 per cent, and the eighty-five and over group increased 25 per cent. The trend in Minnesota has not been so spectacular as this national trend, but nevertheless there has been a marked difference in the rate of growth of the 40 An Inventory of Our Older Residents number of Minnesota residents past seventy-five and that of those sixty-five through seventy-four.
Perhaps one of the measures of the success of a program is in the response of the person for whom the program is intended. A few anecdotes from the past year or two leave little doubt that many volunteer workers should feel more than compensated for the cost and effort. A woman in her eighties returned from California to her home community when she learned that there would be programs organized for people of her age. Two men in Aitkin County who had gone to school together had a glorious reunion for the first time in fifty years at the first meeting of the Golden Age Club, even though they had lived within fifteen miles of each other all the time.
The likely development in the proportion of the aging to the total population of the state may be as shown in the accompanying tabulation, which shows the percentage of aging to total population under conditions of minimum and maximum growth. 50 quarter of the adult population. But this should be the peak, for probably by that time the proportion of the population sixty-five and over will begin to decrease in relation to total population. By the turn of the century the aging will constitute between twenty-two and twentythree and a half per cent of the adult population.
Aging in Minnesota by Arnold Rose