About Us

The Office on Aging & Independence serves as Howard County’s premier resource for dynamic, quality of life programs, services and supports for all ages of adulthood.

Mission & Priorities

OAI's mission is to ensure that Howard County older adults and persons with disabilities have the resources they need to grow, thrive, and live with dignity, by improving access to services and supports, promoting individual choice, and enhancing efficiency and quality of services. Our priorities are:

  • Decrease Social Isolation and Increase Social Connectedness
  • Expand Ethnic & Cultural Diversity Across Programs & Services
  • Promote Healthy Aging

Call the DCRS Emergency Status Hotline for information about closings or delays, at 410-313-7777.

Digital quity image of older adults using laptops

Stay in the know!

Read the February issue of the Office on Aging & Independence's digital newsletter to learn about protecting your healthy heart, joining the Winter Wellness Challenge to boost your activity levels, coming events at 50+ Centers, living well with diabetes, support for caregivers and much more. Subscribe now to have each issue delivered to your inbox. 

Older couple surrounded by hearts

2024 Howard County Resource Guide for Older Adults, Persons with Disabilities and Caregivers

Cover of the 2024 Resource Guide

Join us for lunch at 50+ Centers

Join us for a meal at a Howard County 50+ Center to make new friends, reconnect with old ones, celebrate a birthday or just enjoy a nutritious lunch! Five of the Office on Aging and Independence (OAI) 50+ Centers offer lunch on various days of the week – Bain, Ellicott City, Elkridge, Glenwood, and North Laurel. For more information, view the current menus.

Let's Do Lunch logo with a knife and form inside a yellow circle

Know before you go!

DCRS' inclement weather hotline (410-313-7777) keeps you informed about the opening/closing status of our facilities during a weather event or other emergency. 

Know before you go to any of our facilities for meetings, classes or other programs. 

DCRS Emergency Status Hotline

Programs & Resources


Information & Assistance


Maryland Access Point (MAP) of Howard County is the gateway for information and assistance for older adults, persons with disabilities, family members and caregivers who need or want to plan for future needs.   


50+ Centers


Pursue an active and vital lifestyle through the many offerings at Howard County’s 50+ Centers. Centers offer a wide variety of programs and services including fitness programs, educational opportunities in the arts and humanities; wellness classes and many opportunities for social and recreational activities.


Age-Friendly Howard County


An age-friendly community respects everyone regardless of age or stage of life, and provides basic components that make it a safe place to grow old and grow up.  Click to view more information and the eight domains of livability identified by AARP and the World Health Organization that help make a community age-friendly.


Care Options


A range of services to assist older adults to remain independent in the community with support.


Digital Inclusion & Senior Planet


The Howard County Office on Aging and Independence (OAI) is paving the way for a more digitally inclusive Howard County.


Health Promotion & Nutrition Services


Improving the health and quality of life for older adults and persons with disabilities through a variety of programs and services including exercise, fitness and nutrition programs, wellness classes and evidence-based programs. 


Housing Options


Older adult housing options are numerous, and include independent living communities, assisted living facilities, and nursing homes. MAP can assist you in navigating all the housing options available and determine those that are most appropriate for you or your loved one. 


Additional Programs & Services


Learn about a variety of programs and services that support healthy aging in the community. 


Publications & Reports


Subscribe to the latest publications, reports and plans for the Office on Aging and Independence, including OAI's digital newsletter, distributed via Constant Contact, and the 50+ Connection, published monthly in the Howard County Beacon.


Volunteer Opportunities


Various opportunities to engage with your community.


Community Engagement and Outreach Request


If you would like to request the Office on Aging and Independence to provide a presentation or participate in a community event, please click here to complete the request form .  Please submit the request form at least 2 weeks prior to the event, and allow 3-5 business days for decisions to be made.

Commission on Aging

The Howard County Commission on Aging is a 15-member volunteer advisory board to the Howard County Office on Aging and Independence. The Commission accomplishes its work through the activities of task forces and committees, researches legislation at the county and state level that impacts the health and wellbeing of older adults and their families, and provides testimony when appropriate. Commissioners are appointed by the County Executive and confirmed by the County Council for three-year terms. They represent diverse professional backgrounds, various age and ethnic groups, and many geographic areas of the county.

Learn More

988: The New Way to Connect to Behavioral Health Crisis Services

Maryland has a new way to connect to local behavioral health crisis services. 

Calling 988 will connect callers directly to the National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline which encompasses all behavioral crisis services, to include all mental health and substance use (problems with drug and alcohol use).

The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline replaces the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline AND expands services to cover all behavioral health crisis services.

Learn more about 988 in Maryland


Newsletter Sign-Up

Get email updates on 50+ center activities, health and wellness programs, virtual and in-person classes and other services from the Office on Aging and Independence.


Headshot of woman with long dark hair wearing black blazer - Ofelia Ross Ott
Ofelia Ross Ott
Terri Hansen
Age-Friendly Manager
Courtney Harangozo
Health Promotion and Nutrition Division Manager
Peters Omoregie
Home and Community Based Services Division Manager
Matt Madera
50+ Center Division Manager

Stay Connected!

Sign up for the County Executive's weekly newsletter and stay up to date on everything Howard County.

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