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Working in Retirement

Canadian boomers changing what retirement means

American baby boomers aren't the only ones who are shaking up the traditional meaning of retirement. Their northern counterparts in Canada are doing the same - staying in the workforce, traveling, volunteering and leading healthy, active lifestyles. 

"Boomers think they are the authors of their destiny," 64-year-old Michael Adams, president of Environics Research Group, told The Globe And Mail. "They're in the vanguard, changing the process of what it is to be older."

What does that mean? Adams explained that many boomers are choosing to take a few years off to see exotic parts of the world - from China to Machu Picchu - and then coming back to start their own companies. In many cases, these businesses could be non-government organizations (NGOs) that are meant to help others.

This seems to be the case in the United States, where 57 percent of baby boomers were active volunteers in 2009, according to The Miami Herald.

Retirement communities such as Sun City Huntley in Huntley, Illinois, are bringing older adults together so they can give back to the community in a number of ways - from volunteering at meals, helping people in low income areas or mentoring at a local school.  

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