Committed To Becoming More Age-Friendly
Hernando United States of America
Meeting very similar goals of WHO’s Age Friendly Cities and Communities Hernando is progressive about improving the quality of life for all its citizens. By helping the community get and stay healthy it was the first city in the state to be named the Healthiest Hometown (in 2010) by Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation. The award is given to the city in the state that is doing the most to promote a culture of health, especially via sustainable policy changes. Land developers are required to install sidewalks in all new development, including residential, commercial and industrial areas which will make the city more pedestrian friendly. The city has striped bike lanes and has installed signage promoting safe cycling. Other development policies, like a requirement for connected streets, makes the city more walkable and bikable. The city’s design standards make the community safer and more attractive, further increasing the possibility that citizens will walk and bike. The city has a Senior Program called “Young at Heart” that focuses on seniors and provides activities including, arthritis classes, senior fitness and dance classes, walking group, Senior trip to Europe, a pot-luck luncheon once a month and monthly guest speakers who focus on the senior age community. The Hernando Farmers Market (HFM) is one block form the most disadvantaged neighborhood and in walking distance from the historic downtown neighborhoods as well as more modern subdivisions. The HFM drives the local economy by encouraging backyard farming and selling their produce at the market. HFM has many retired citizens who sell as vendors each Saturday. HFM also accepts SNAP and Senior Vouchers and doubles SNAP transactions up to $10 to increase the consumption of fruits and vegetables. The Hernando Public Library offers senior programs includingWorking with a local Senior Community Task Force will allow for more conversation about senior iniatives and how the city can become more age friendly.