Committed To Becoming More Age-Friendly
Illawarra Shoalhaven Region Australia
Age Friendly Illawarra is an alliance of organisations aiming to create opportunities for older people to lead active, engaged lives and contribute positively to Illawarra communities. Underpinned by the Illawarra Shoalhaven Joint Organisation the Alliance has drive a regional approach, through collaboration and consultation, to feature and improve the age friendly features of the region.
Instigated by a tour of educational workshops and speaking engagements by Dr Alexandre Kalache, Age Friendly Alliance built relationships and sought commitment for a regional approach to an Age Friendly Illawarra.
The Age Friendly Illawarra Alliance has consulted extensively with older people to develop a baseline assessment of the age friendliness of the region. The framework of the World Health Organization’s Age Friendly Cities domains have been used to generate a baseline assessment from the Illawarra Shoalhaven communities as to the age-friendly strengths and challenges within the region. Priorities and opportunities for collaboration have been identified and incorporated into a Model and Plan progressing age-friendly initiatives over the next three years. The findings, summarised in the Age Friendly Illawarra Consultation Report, have informed the development of the Age Friendly Illawarra Implementation Plan 2018-2021, which includes the indicators to be used to measure the success of the initiative. Three priority areas were identified: Outdoor Spaces, Communication and Social Participation.
Age Friendly Illawarra successfully obtained state government funding to employ a project coordinator dedicated to creating an age friendly region, a series of initiatives are being implemented and evaluated. Through a collaborative approach with all levels of local government, organisations and passionate individuals the initiatives will be promoted more broadly through a series of simple toolkits.