Age Friendly Communities
The population of the United States is rapidly aging. Approximately 45 million Americans are age 65 or older. By 2030 that number will reach 73 million, which will mean that one of every five people in the U.S. will be 65 or older. People are living longer and staying active longer and our community needs to adjust to meet those needs.
In late 2019, Madison became part of the AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities. This was the first of many steps to make our city more livable for adults age 65 and older. Age Friendly Communities is a part of the larger AARP Livable Communities initiative which supports the efforts of neighborhoods, towns, cities and rural areas to be great places for people of all ages. The work that happens within the network is hands-on and locally determined and directed.
Age friendly communities are designed at the grass roots level, and that is why we need your help. The City of Madison, in collaboration with AARP, just launched a survey to gather information from people age 45 and older who live, work or play here. Survey data will be used to create an action plan that will inform City leaders about how to make Madison age-friendly. Join our efforts by sharing your thoughts and opinions. Take the survey: www.bit.ly/3fMw4oM.
A livable community is safe and secure, and it offers choices in where to live and how to get around. More importantly, it equitably serves residents of all ages, ability levels, incomes, races, ethnicities, and other backgrounds. Livable communities enhance personal independence; allow residents to remain in their homes and communities as they age; and provide opportunities for residents of all ages, ability levels, and backgrounds to engage fully in civic, economic, and social life.
Our communities should provide safe, walkable streets; age-friendly housing and transportation options; access to needed services; and opportunities for residents of all ages and zip codes to participate in community life. Success depends on elected officials, partner organizations and local leaders working together to assess where we are now, and what the desired outcomes are. Careful planning and development of a plan that is feasible to implement is critical.
Older adults help us to retain something called institutional memory which is “an understanding of the history and culture of an organization, especially the stories that explain the reasons behind certain decisions or procedures. “ When their knowledge, skills, resources and contributions are sought out it benefits people of all ages. Our City is richer because of the skills, knowledge and institutional memories of our older population. I am really pleased that we are doing what we can to make sure this is a safe and accommodating place for them to live.
Please take the survey and help us identify what will make Madison an Age Friendly Community for you!
Use this link: www.bit.ly/3fMw4oM or the take a picture of the QR code: