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Elderly Couple Running Together

Age-Friendly Community

Our Campaign: Age-Friendly Community

The GLF campaign to bring Age Friendly Community to the heart of London is now underway.  We believe the World Health Organisations’ Age-Friendly Community Framework serves as a guiding blueprint for governments, organizations, and communities London-wide to create inclusive and age-friendly environments, enabling older adults to lead fulfilling lives, maintain their independence, and actively contribute to their communities.  We are working with our forums and groups across the London region to encourage local authorities to start the process of becoming an Age Friendly Community. 

 

If you are interested in influencing the uptake in your borough and require further information on the Age Friendly Community Framework contact us on: E: greaterlondonforum@outlook.com  or T: 0207 622 0485   M: 07443647222

 

The World Health Organization (WHO) Age-Friendly Community Framework is a comprehensive guide that aims to create inclusive and supportive environments for older adults. It outlines key principles and domains to foster active aging and ensure that communities are accessible, inclusive, and responsive to the needs of older individuals. The framework encompasses the following domains:

 

  • Outdoor Spaces and Buildings: Designing age-friendly outdoor spaces that are safe, walkable, and accessible, including parks, streets, and public buildings, to promote mobility, physical activity, and social engagement.

 

  • Transportation: Developing transportation systems that are convenient, affordable, and accessible to older adults, facilitating their independence, mobility, and participation in community life.

 

  • Housing: Ensuring that housing options meet the diverse needs and preferences of older individuals, promoting accessibility, safety, and the ability to age in place.

 

  • Social Participation: Encouraging social engagement and meaningful participation for older adults by fostering inclusive community activities, events, and opportunities for social connections and intergenerational interactions.

 

  • Respect and Social Inclusion: Promoting respect, dignity, and social inclusion for older individuals, combating ageism, and recognizing their valuable contributions to society.

 

  • Civic Participation and Employment: Encouraging older adults to engage in civic activities, volunteerism, and part-time or full-time employment opportunities that reflect their skills, interests, and capabilities.

 

  • Communication and Information: Ensuring that older individuals have access to clear, accurate, and age-appropriate information and communication channels to participate fully in community life.

 

  • Community Support and Health Services: Establishing comprehensive support systems, including health services, social care, and community-based support, to meet the needs of older adults and promote healthy aging.

Guidance in developing the Age-Friendly Framework for a London Borough

Developing an Age-Friendly Framework in a London borough involves a collaborative and holistic approach that engages various stakeholders, including older adults themselves. Here are some steps that can be taken:

  1. Assess the Current Situation: Conduct a comprehensive assessment of the borough's current age-friendliness. This can include gathering data on demographics, health indicators, social services, transportation, housing, outdoor spaces, community resources, and existing initiatives for older adults.

  2. Engage Older Adults: Involve older adults in the development process by seeking their input and feedback. Conduct surveys, focus groups, or town hall meetings to understand their needs, preferences, and challenges. Their insights will help shape the framework and ensure it truly reflects their voices.

  3. Establish Partnerships: Collaborate with local government agencies, community organizations, healthcare providers, housing authorities, transportation authorities, and businesses to foster a coordinated and multi-sectoral approach. Partnerships will facilitate the implementation of age-friendly initiatives and maximize available resources.

  4. Define Priorities and Goals: Based on the assessment and stakeholder input, identify the key priorities and goals for developing an age-friendly borough. Prioritize areas such as accessible transportation, housing options, social participation opportunities, healthcare services, and community support.

  5. Create an Action Plan: Develop a detailed action plan that outlines specific strategies, initiatives, and timelines for each priority area. Assign responsibilities and allocate resources accordingly. The action plan should be realistic, measurable, and adaptable to changing needs and circumstances.

  6. Enhance Outdoor Spaces: Improve the accessibility and safety of outdoor spaces, including parks, sidewalks, and public facilities. Install benches, ramps, and proper lighting. Promote intergenerational and recreational activities that encourage older adults to engage with the community.

  7. Develop Age-Friendly Housing: Collaborate with housing authorities and developers to ensure the availability of age-friendly housing options. Consider universal design principles, accessibility features, and support services to enable older adults to age in place comfortably and safely.

  8. Foster Social Inclusion: Organize social events, clubs, and community activities that foster social connections and intergenerational interactions. Encourage older adults to actively participate in decision-making processes, volunteer programs, and local civic activities.

  9. Improve Transportation: Work with transportation authorities to enhance public transportation accessibility for older adults. Ensure convenient routes, accessible vehicles, and reduced fares. Promote alternative transportation options, such as community transport services or volunteer driver programs.

  10. Enhance Community Support: Strengthen existing support services for older adults, including healthcare, social care, and community-based organizations. Establish referral systems, information hubs, and outreach programs to connect older adults with the services they need.

  11. Monitor Progress and Evaluation: Regularly evaluate the implementation of age-friendly initiatives and monitor progress toward the defined goals. Collect feedback from older adults and adjust strategies accordingly. Use data and indicators to measure the impact and make informed decisions for continuous improvement.

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