Age Friendly Cities and Communities

Age Friendly Victoria

Older people creating great places to grow up and grow old in.

Age Friendly Victoria is an initiative of Council on the Ageing (COTA) Victoria.

With support from the Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation, Age Friendly Victoria is working with older people, community groups and councils across Victoria.

Age Friendly Victoria is facilitating and supporting older people to ensure their local communities are thriving places for all people to live, work, learn and play.

Building on the capacities of older people, COTA will train older people to audit, consult and report on their findings to their local community. Through a partnership approach, COTA will assist older people to develop local networks across academia, government, business and civil society to bring about positive change.

COTA is working closely with its fellow COTA organisations across Australia, the WHO, the International Federation on Ageing and other sectors including governments, non-government agencies, academics and business organisations both internationally, nationally and locally, to ensure age-friendly communities grow and flourish.

How can I find out more about Age Friendly Victoria?

To receive news updates about Age Friendly Victoria, please sign up for COTA’s fortnightly COTA CONNECTS e-newsletter, or telephone COTA on 1800 136 381 (FREECALL).

Age Friendly Victoria is an initiative of Council on the Ageing (COTA) Victoria.

With support from the Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation, Age Friendly Victoria is working with older people, community groups and councils from 20 locations across Victoria

Age Friendly Victoria will facilitate and support older people in 20 local areas across regional and metropolitan Victoria to ensure their local communities are thriving places for all people to live, work, learn and play.

Building on the capacities of older people, COTA will train older people to audit, consult and report on their findings to their local community. Through a partnership approach, COTA will assist older people to develop local networks across academia, government, business and civil society to bring about positive change. The goal of the project is to enable 20 local governments to be ready to be accredited as Age-Friendly Cities and Communities by the World Health Organisation (WHO) by June, 2014.

COTA is working closely with its fellow COTA organisations across Australia, the WHO, the International Federation on Ageing and other sectors including governments, non-government agencies, academics and business organisations both internationally, nationally and locally, to ensure age-friendly communities grow and flourish.

– See more at: http://www.agefriendlyvictoria.org.au/what-is-age-friendly-victoria/#sthash.4QBgaSoq.dpuf

What is an Age Friendly Community?

Age friendly cities and communities are places where older people live safely, enjoy good health and stay involved. Guiding the development of Age friendly places is a process that actively involves older people in decision-making, implementation and evaluation of a plan of action to bring about sustainable change.

Why a new focus on older people?

People across Victoria are living longer and healthier lives than any other time in human history. This exciting change in the make-up of our society means there will soon be equal numbers of older people as there are children. People over the age of 80 are now the fastest growing age group in the State. This change is permanent, bringing with it significant social change. Five generations are now living, learning, working and socialising together.

Older people make a significant contribution to their families, their communities, the economy and society in general. To ensure this vital contribution continues, we need to enable older people to age seamlessly with dignity and purpose.

In 2006 the World Health Organisation brought together 33 cities of varying sizes throughout the world to discover what makes a city a good place in which to grow old. Crucially, this initiative involved older people at every stage. In the same year, using the same approach, the Canadian Government worked with small rural communities to find out what small communities are age friendly. The recommendations from this work were released in 2007 in the WHO Global Age-Friendly Cities: A Guide and Age-friendly Rural and Remote Communities: A Guide.

Eight key domains were identified:

  • Outdoor spaces and buildings
  • Transportation
  • Housing
  • Social participation
  • Respect and social inclusion
  • Civic participation and employment
  • Communication and information
  • Community support and health services.

Supporting communities to become age friendly is the one of the most effective strategies to promote active ageing. Policies to create age friendly communities contribute to sustainable, healthy communities for all.

The Victorian Government through the Municipal Association of Victoria and COTA Positive Ageing in Local Communities project that ran between 2005 and 2009, sought to build the capacity of local government in planning for an ageing population and provided leadership in promoting age friendly communities. Councils were encouraged to develop positive ageing strategies and implement actions addressing the social, built or economic environment.

This new action-focused approach by COTA will show what is possible to bring about change—not through greatly increased expenditure—but through the capabilities, creativity and resourcefulness of older people themselves working in partnership with local organisations.

What is the thinking behind COTA Age Friendly Victoria?

COTA Age Friendly Victoria is grounded in sound international and national research and knowledge. It is based on the values and experience of COTA in improving the wellbeing of older Victorians. This new approach is based on a number of important principles including:

  • A recognition that older people are critical contributors to our society and a resource, not a burden, to society;
  • Communities that find imaginative ways of capitalising on the diverse assets of older adults can find ways of addressing many of their complex challenges and providing much needed services;
  • A commitment to the direct involvement of older people in deciding priorities, shaping actions, and bringing about change;
  • An emphasis on improving the physical environment, and the understanding that where we live greatly affects how we live;
  • An awareness that age-friendly principles and practice create environments and communities that benefit all age groups, not just older people;
  • A linked-awareness that everyone has an interest in these developments, because we will all be ‘older’ in time, and hope to live in a community and a society that respects, includes and cares for us;
  • A determination and commitment that Victoria will set standards and lead the way for other states.

Previous Age Friendly Victoria News

Welcome to Age Friendly Victoria, an initiative of Council on the Ageing Victoria (COTA Victoria). Age Friendly Victoria is working across 20 locations in Victoria, Australia to provide older people with the tools and support to achieve the Age-Friendly changes they want to see in their communities.

To discover where Age Friendly Victoria is operating, or find your closest group, please visit the Locations page.

Age Friendly Victoria is an initiative led by older people, with support from COTA Victoria in partnership with the Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation of Melbourne.

– See more at: http://www.agefriendlyvictoria.org.au/#sthash.hCJCLxeG.dpuf

Welcome to Age Friendly Victoria, an initiative of Council on the Ageing Victoria (COTA Victoria). Age Friendly Victoria is working across 20 locations in Victoria, Australia to provide older people with the tools and support to achieve the Age-Friendly changes they want to see in their communities.

To discover where Age Friendly Victoria is operating, or find your closest group, please visit the Locations page.

Age Friendly Victoria is an initiative led by older people, with support from COTA Victoria in partnership with the Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation of Melbourne.

– See more at: http://www.agefriendlyvictoria.org.au/#sthash.hCJCLxeG.dpuf

Launch Of Age Friendly Victoria

Photo above from left:  Elizabeth Jensen, President COTA VIC, Sue Hendy, CEO COTA VIC, Kathleen Brasher, COTA VIC, Catherine Brown, CEO Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation, Lew Whelan, COTA Peer Educator, Mike Zafiropoulos, Trustee, Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation.

 

March, 2013: At a ceremony held in the Melbourne Town Hall on March 13, Age Friendly Victoria was launched.

The Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation has provided a grant of $300,000 over a two year period to fund the initiative.

The Foundation’s CEO, Catherine Brown said that the Foundation is delighted to be the funding partner for Age Friendly Victoria and said that developing a more supportive and inclusive society had become a priority for them.

Sue Hendy, COTA VIC CEO said that this initiative is designed to enable older people to take action in their local community and to educate their community about positive ageing.

Victoria has an urgent need to become age friendly as the number of people over 65 years will double over the next 30 years and there is already one million Victorians over 65 years.

COTA is working with older people, local councils, seniors’ organisations, state government and businesses to identify what is needed to make their community age friendly.

A network of older people in each community will identify local outcomes, such as age friendly parks, facilities where various generations can come together and age friendly shops and workplaces. In practical terms, an age friendly community adapts its structures
and services to be accessible to and inclusive of older people with varying needs and capacities.

Sue Hendy says this will require a change in attitude towards ageing.

“We have already started to tackle sexism and racism. Now it’s time to tackle ageism!” Sue Hendy said.

Historic 1st International Conference on Age Friendly Cities

September, 2011: The first international conference on ‘Age-Friendly Cities’ took place in Dublin from 28 to 30 September 2011. The conference was organised by the World Health Organisation’s Age Friendly Cities Network, in conjunction with the International Federation on Ageing (IFA) and Ireland’s Ageing Well Network. COTA was represented by Debra Parnell, Manager, Policy at COTA Victoria.

The conference brought together a broad range of representatives from municipal authorities and governments, NGOs and community groups across the world. The conference programme was built around three main themes: Social and Cultural Connectivity, Built Environment and Building Momentum for the WHO Global Age-friendly Cities initiative. An exciting and stimulating array of speakers and workshops provided the opportunity to explore and share issues and developments in the Age Friendly Cities movement, as well hearing about inspiring examples of how communities across the world are embracing age-friendly principles.

A highlight of the conference was the signing of the Declaration on Age-Friendly Cities (Dublin Declaration) by representatives of 38 cities.

Historic signing of the Dublin Declaration

By signing the Dublin Declaration the participating authorities demonstrated their commitment to action and progressing the principles that underpin the Age-Friendly Cities movement:

  • promotion and support activities towards the establishment of age-friendly  environments,
  • linkage with other cities in the network,
  • awareness-raising on the needs and rights of older people,
  • support for the positive contribution and active participation of older people in the different spheres of social life, and
  • ensuring an accessible, safe and  friendly built environment and services (public buildings and spaces, residential neighbourhoods, homes for the elderly, public transport, health services).

You can find out more and download the conference presentations at www.afc-internationalconference.ie/

How did Age Friendly Victoria begin?

In 2006 COTA, in partnership with the Municipal Association of Victoria, joined the WHO as one of two Australian cities in the international project on Age-friendly Cities. The McCaughey Centre at The University of Melbourne undertook the research on behalf of MAV/COTA with the City of Maribyrnong.

The COTA Age Friendly Victoria initiative was launched in March 2013 at a short ceremony held in the Melbourne Town Hall. The Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation has provided $300,000 to COTA Victoria as developing a more supportive and inclusive society was a priority for the Foundation.

In 2006 COTA, in partnership with the Municipal Association of Victoria, joined the WHO as one of two Australian cities in the international project on Age-friendly Cities. The McCaughey Centre at The University of Melbourne undertook the research on behalf of MAV/COTA with the City of Maribyrnong.

The COTA Age Friendly Victoria initiative was launched in March 2013 at a short ceremony held in the Melbourne Town Hall. The Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation has provided $300,000 to COTA Victoria as developing a more supportive and inclusive society was a priority for the Foundation.

– See more at: http://www.agefriendlyvictoria.org.au/what-is-age-friendly-victoria/#sthash.4QBgaSoq.dpuf

COTA and the Municipal Association of Victoria have been working together for the  past five years to promote the concept of an Age Friendly Environments. During this time there has been terrific work done within a number of Councils. If you have not heard about this great work and are new to the concept of Age Friendly Cities/Environments click here for more information.

4 Responses to Age Friendly Cities and Communities

  1. Jan Pagliaro says:

    Could you please advise me which are the seven municipalities where voted aged friendly cities.

  2. Hi Juan,

    thank you for your comment. I just sent you a email with some information.
    Kind Regards,

    COTA Vic Team

  3. Casey says:

    Hi,
    I would also like to know which of the 7 municipalities were voted as aged friendly cities too, please.

    Regards,

  4. Hi Casey,
    Thank you for you comment. Please go to the following for information about your request.
    http://www.communityservices.act.gov.au/wac/ageing/age-friendly-city-resources

    Have a wonderful day!

    COTA Vic Team

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