The Town of Clarenville and surrounding communities are supportive of the changing needs of our residents. We are well aware that the population of Newfoundland and Labrador is aging along with the rest of Canada. We also know that there are many positive aspects of people living longer. There are many reasons to celebrate longevity. Older adults do contribute to families and society in so many different and meaningful ways. Random Age-Friendly Communities Board aims to keep in focus the positive aspects of an aging population. The Board welcomes suggestions from the public to help make communities more “age-friendly” to all age groups.
In September 2006, the Federal/Provincial/Territorial Ministers responsible for Seniors endorsed the Age-Friendly Rural/Remote Communities Initiative. This initiative built on the work underway by the World Health Organization and the Global Age-Friendly Cities Project, a project of five selected Canadian cities. One of the objectives of this initiative was to produce a practical guide that rural and remote communities across Canada could use to identify barriers and to foster dialogue and action that supports the development of age-friendly communities. “Age-Friendly Rural and Remote Communities: A Guide” was launched on October 1, 2007, the International Day of Older Persons.
A total of 10 communities in eight provinces were identified by provincial and territorial governments to participate in this initiative. CLARENVILLE was one of those 10 communities to pilot the Age-Friendly Initiative in 2007.
Out of this pilot, emerged the Random Age-Friendly Communities Board that was empowered by the town to carry out the assessment and work in collaboration with the town to help develop a framework of age-friendly practices. Participation in the pilot project carried the responsibility of sharing best practices and lessons learned with the provincial government to help with the development of a province-wide Age-Friendly Communities program.
Random Age-Friendly Communities Board has been able to contribute some of these best practices to the development of the Age-Friendly Communities NL Program. The results of the pilot were also shared throughout the province and at the national level. Many requests are received to assist other communities in the province to help them get started on the age-friendly journey.
Random Age-Friendly Communities is a 13-member board and has a broad representation within our town. Services include appropriate, affordable, and accessible transportation; housing; support services and opportunities to participate in healthy aging; spiritual, social, recreational activities; and most important, a safe and secure environment.