In early 2022, National Seniors Australia surveyed almost 3500 Australians aged 50 years and over with a range of questions about communities and quality of life.
One question asked older Australians if they thought participating actively in their community enhanced their quality of life. Of the 3019 people who responded, 80 per cent agreed, saying that they value connection, meaning, belonging and staying active.
Sixty one per cent of respondents suggested ways that communities could enhance the quality of life for older residents. Amongst the suggestions were:
- Better transport: Accessible, regular, safer, cheaper public transport; transport assistance for medical appointments and those with mobility problems
- Accessibility: Understanding the needs of older people with disabilities; accommodation of less visible disabilities
- Information and Communication: Wider advertising of programs and services for older people; advertising methods that actually reach older people
- Health services: More locally available doctors, nurses, GPs, specialists and other health professionals; more local health services and facilities
- Local facilities: more local facilities and services; regularly maintained community centres and senior’s centres;
- Activities and socialising: more activities for older people; accessibly scheduled activities
- Housing: more local available housing; caring management of retirement villages and lifestyle resorts
- Aged care: quality, caring residential aged care facilities quality; caring home care services
- Development and population: resident’s needs put first, before the needs of developers and tourists
- Greenspaces and environment: stop development that damages biodiversity; better street maintenance; decent walking areas to go out walking
- Crime and public safety: stricter measures to tackle crime in the local community; end domestic violence, home invasions, muggings
- Money and discounts: control cost of living increases; financial support to enable seniors to volunteer
- Job opportunities: employment opportunities for older people; part time and casual work options
- Attitude and culture: less ageism; enhanced understanding of older people’s contribution
- Better government: grassroots involvement of older constituents; consulting older people more.
You can read the full report here: https://nationalseniors.com.au/research/health-and-aged-care/changing-local-communities-to-improve-quality-of-life
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