Age friendly communities are those that are inclusive and accessible for people of all ages. This encompasses spaces and places and programs and initiatives that make a community better for all residents - from children and young people to seniors.
Age friendly communities benefit everyone by creating a culture of inclusion enjoyed by people of all ages and abilities. These communities:
- recognise the great diversity among its residents
- promote their inclusion and contribution in all areas of community life
- respect their decisions and lifestyle choices, and
- anticipate and responds to age-related needs and preferences.
The Commonwealth Government’s 2015 Intergenerational Report projects that the number of Australians aged over 65 will more than double by 2055.
The Department of Local Government and Communities estimated that by 2030, it is projected that there will be 551 100 young Western Australians – a 20% rise from today.
As Australia grows and the population continues to age, the challenge will be our ability to meet the growing need for aged care accommodation and services.
With this in mind, WA Local Government is working with the State Government to develop Age Friendly Communities.
Local Government supports the creation of age friendly communities through land use planning and zoning controls, by ensuring the provision of adequate services and infrastructure supporting the needs of people as they move through the ageing continuum.
For Older people this may mean the development of aged specific housing; support services and social infrastructure extends to the delivery of services such as home maintenance, respite care, domestic assistance, ‘meals on wheels’ and transport.
For young people, it is Local Governments investment in their civic participation and wellbeing: youth advisory councils, immunisation clinics, early literacy through the 233 Public Libraries in WA, recreational parks, skate parks, swimming pools, youth centre’s and services to support their wellbeing.