The Age-friendly Communities Approach
Recognizing population aging as a major force shaping the 21st century, the World Health Organization developed an Age-friendly Cities Framework in 2007. In it, eight overlapping domains are proposed that help identify barriers older adults face in their communities.
Age-friendly communities allow for healthy, safe and equitable aging. These communities recognize the wide range of capacities and resources of older persons, and respond to their needs while removing physical and social barriers to inclusion. However, age-friendly communities also benefit all demographics and groups, as safer, more inclusive planning and infrastructure is a win for everyone.
The creation of age-friendly communities in B.C. builds upon these findings from the WHO and the Canadian Age-friendly Rural & Remote Communities project. Since 2007, the provincial government and health authorities across the province have supported local governments in the creation of age-friendly communities. This is an ever-growing and necessary endeavour, as by 2031, around 1.5 billion, or a quarter of the province’s population, will be over the age of 65.