Community Forum Explored Key Options For Aging Well in Niagara
“Age-friendly communities benefit individuals of all ages and the entire community. They are more accessible, reduce isolation, stimulate local economy, improve quality of life, and improve access to, and awareness of community, health and social services.”
Niagara, Ontario – The Age-Friendly Niagara Network (AFNN), in partnership with the Pelham Seniors’ Advisory Committee hosted a Niagara-wide forum to explore the role that having access to a range of housing options plays in community inclusion and aging well.
The February 13th event took place at the new Meridian Community Centre in Fonthill. Participants include older adults from across Niagara, newly-appointed municipal Seniors and Age-Friendly advisory committee members, municipal council members, and individuals whose focus is on lifespan wellness.
Age-friendly communities benefit individuals of all ages and the entire community. They are more accessible, reduce isolation, stimulate local economy, improve quality of life, and improve access to, and awareness of community, health and social services.
This forum explored these benefits, with a particular focus on the positive effects, for Niagara, of older adults of all income levels having access to a range of housing options.
Keynote speaker Dr. Parminder Raina of McMaster University shared recent findings from the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging, and explore current shifts in the way we think about older adults, lifespan wellness and inclusion. Subsequent presentations and discussions highlighted promising practices and opportunities to align local Age-Friendly planning priorities with those at the provincial and national levels.
A mid-morning panel explored how we can create the conditions for older adults (of all income levels) in Niagara to have access to a range of suitable housing options. Panelists included Arlene Etchen from the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation; Wendy Thompson from Niagara Regional Housing; Jean D’Amelio Swyer, Thorold Age-Friendly Advisory Committee and Fred Neale, City of Thorold Councillor; and Ken Gonyou from Mountainview Homes.
The Age-Friendly Niagara Network is a group of local citizens, volunteers, community partners and municipal leaders who have joined together to learn about, take action on and champion global age-friendly community principles to make Niagara ‘a community for all ages’.