The Older Americans Act (OAA), Public Law 89-73, was enacted in 1965 to develop new or improved programs which help older persons living in the community do so with dignity and in good health. One of the first programs established through the OAA was the elder nutrition program. The purpose of the elder nutrition program is:
(1) to reduce hunger and food insecurity
(2) to promote socialization of older individuals
(3) to promote the health and well-being of older individuals by assisting such individuals to gain access to nutrition and other disease prevention and health promotion services to delay the onset of adverse health conditions resulting from poor nutritional health or sedentary behavior.
-Prevent malnutrition and promote good health behaviors through nutrition education, nutrition screening and intervention of participants.
-Offer wholesome, delicious meals through the promotion and maintenance of high standards of food safety and sanitation.
-Promote or maintain coordination with nutrition-related and other supportive services for older individuals.
-Target older adults who have the greatest economic or social need with particular attention to low-income, minority, and rural individuals.
The nutrition program is funded by a combination of federal and state funds, local, public, and private funds, and participant contributions.