Committed To Becoming More Age-Friendly
Dartmouth United States of America
The Town of Dartmouth has a solid history of providing excellent services to the senior population of the community. The focus of these activities has been the Senior Center which is located in the Bliss Corner area of the community, a walk-able mixed use neighborhood, close to schools, the library and shopping. The Town’s Council on Aging (COA) oversees the activities and the eleven Council members are appointed for overlapping three year terms by the Board of Selectmen. The Senior Center is multi-purpose offering a variety of services and programs including but not limited to nutritional, recreational, adult day care, free transportation for medical appointments, grocery shopping and other personal needs, case management, food bank, and tax assistance. The Center serves about 3,600 unduplicated elders annually and the 501 (C)3 group, Dartmouth Friends of the Elderly is very active in promoting senior issues and fundraising for new initiatives. The Town of Dartmouth strives to provide access to academic, cultural, recreational, commercial and employment opportunities, all of which add to the Town’s quality of live and allow residents to age in place, in the housing of their choice, while still being contributing members of society. The Town actively seeks community involvement for its numerous boards and commissions. The Department of Public Works has an active program to construct and upgrade sidewalks in various areas of Town in order to make the neighborhoods and services more accessible to all. The Town is actively engaged with our regional planning agency, SRPEDD, which is looking to increase public transportation opportunities throughout the region. The Town is committed to the development of affordable housing opportunities and to assisting seniors age in place. The first phase of the Lincoln Park project will include 36 affordable housing units and the second phase will include 44 age restricted units. The Town has a housing rehabilitation program which offers no interest loans for income qualified seniors for structural and energy efficiency repairs. As the Town looks to increase parks throughout the community, it seeks to develop sites that will include passive and active recreation opportunities that will service residents of all age and ability levels. Dartmouth is committed to energy efficiency in building design and strongly supports renewable energy. It has adopted a policy that new municipal buildings are LEED certified. Moving forward as a member of the AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities, Dartmouth will continue to investigate opportunities for more senior housing and smart growth development which provide integrated opportunities for living, shopping, working, and recreation with increased access to a variety of transportation options. Policies and plans will be reviewed and updated with a focus on continuing to evolve to a more age-friendly community.