What is AARP?
The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) is a non-profit, nonpartisan organization that promotes the concerns and interests of middle-aged and older people. The AARP is the nation's largest organization serving those people of 50 years and older ages. It offers member benefits, marketing services, and advocacy on their behalf. Anyone 50 years of age or over, employed or not, is eligible to join. Its main office is in Washington, D.C.
Ethel Percy Andrus, a retired teacher, created the AARP in 1958 with the intention of assisting senior citizens in staying mentally and physically active by helping each other. The National Retired Teachers Association (NRTA), which Andrus created in 1947 to secure pension and health insurance benefits for retired teachers. It was merged with the AARP in 1982.
The AARP provides its members with a wide range of services and advantages. One of these is a group health insurance program. Others include a credit union, a pharmacy, travel services, and special savings on car rentals, airfare, and hotels. It promotes initiatives that benefit the community in fields like consumer affairs, adult education, safe driving, crime prevention, and bereaved person counselling. Additionally, the NRTA offers retired teachers particular assistance and retirement planning programs. The AARP publishes articles and videos on a range of health-related topics as well as other matters pertaining to ageing.
The majority of the community service and other initiatives run by the local AARP chapters are implemented by volunteers. The AARP's board of directors is selected at a biennial conference and serves on a volunteer basis.
At the federal and state levels, the AARP actively works to influence the passage of legislation that affects senior persons; this is one of its main roles. AARP has developed into a potent organization with more than 38 million active members and a significant lobbying presence in the state and federal capitals.
How does AARP work?
AARP offers information, education, research, lobbying, and community services through a network of local chapters around the country and skilled volunteers. It concentrates its efforts on issues relating to consumers, economic security, employment, health, and independent living and takes part in legislative, legal, and consumer advocacy in these fields.
In addition to operating a successful business offering health & life insurance, investment vehicles, and other non-financial and financial services, AARP is regarded as a potent lobbying organization. It is also an independent publisher, publishing bimonthly Modern Maturity magazine and the monthly AARP Bulletin. In 2019, AARP earned around $1.70 billion in earnings from various sources, including royalties from the licensing of its logo and name and advertising revenue from its publications.
However, membership fees stand out as the main revenue source. It is authorized to lobby since the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has recognized it as a 501(c)(4) non-profit organization. Along with managing some 501(c)(3) public charity activities, it also manages some of its other for-profit activities.
Affiliates of AARP
There are many organizations affiliated with AARP, and they are increasing over time.
The AARP Foundation is a non-profit organization that helps persons above 50 who might be at risk of losing their job or struggling to live in their community. The foundation runs AARP Experience Corps., which promotes teaching and mentoring of youngsters, and AARP Institute manages its gift annuities fund.
New services and products are created and managed by AARP Services, which operates for profit. Elders in Washington, D.C., can obtain legal assistance through Legal Counsel for the Elderly, a non-profit organization.
AARP Financial Services is a for-profit organization that owns AARP property. The AARP Insurance Plan manages a few AARP group insurance policies.
Other AARP activities include:
Seniors' housing concerns and social isolation are addressed through outreach initiatives managed by AARP. Additionally, AARP has created and overseen initiatives that support the improvement of Medicare and Social Security.