OpenIDEO is an open innovation platform. Join our global community to solve big challenges for social good. Sign Up / Login or Learn more

Allow the 50+ Community to Explore and Enjoy Their Interests While Supporting Themselves

Seniors can turn the hobbies they do in their free time into a way of providing for themselves in their retirement.

Photo of Emma Kolakowski
3 4

Written by

Who is your idea designed for and how does it support the dreams and obligations of those 50 and older?

My idea is designed for the senior community, especially those members that are retired or work part-time.

    Many people 50 and up are already retired or are considering/planning for retirement.  But as stated in the prompt, due to the increasing life span of humans, these seniors may find themselves needing to stretch their savings.  I have combined my solution for this with a solution that could solve another problem faced by many seniors - the issue of seniors, going from working from 9 to 5, having extra time on their hands and facing boredom.  It has been suggested that seniors find hobbies to occupy their time and give them emotional and creative output. 

    Under my plan, seniors could turn their recreational hobbies into a source of modest profit that would supplement their retirement funds.  Seniors would be encouraged to explore hobbies such as baking, sculpting, canning, knitting, music, sewing, woodworking, gardening, painting, and other creative pursuits that result in a finished, sell-able product.  The products produced could then be sold at craft fairs and farmer's markets, resulting in a wealth of positive benefits.  Seniors would have something to do with their newfound spare time, possible mental health benefits, additional income, a sense of direction and purpose, and meet people with similar interests. The community would benefit from new markets of creative products and would be healthier overall as older citizens found happiness and direction. 

    Those over 50 who have not yet retired could engage in this to a smaller extent.  They could take once weekly classes in a variety of creative classes, giving them a time of relaxation from the stresses of working while aging, and preparing them to become part of the artistic community of seniors that would be growing in their communities.

    I believe this would have a wide variety of benefits for seniors and the community as a whole, and support both the dreams and the obligations of the senior community.

What early, lightweight experiment might you try out in your own community to find out if the idea will meet your expectations?

I could bring this idea to seniors in my community and get their opinions on the idea's viability and helpfulness.

What skills, input or guidance from the OpenIDEO community would be most helpful in building out or refining your idea?

I would appreciate if other Open Ideo members would mention this idea to seniors in their own county to give an idea of the senior community's feelings towards this solution.

Please check all that apply:

  • I'm currently a member of a credit union

This idea emerged from

  • An Individual


Join the conversation:

Photo of OpenIDEO

Hi Emma, thanks for the post! Any chance you could find an image to go along with it? Images help grab attention and tell a story. You should be able to use the Edit Contribution button on the top of your post and follow the instructions to add images from there. Looking forward to seeing more of your inspiring insights on OpenIDEO.

View all comments