The City of Mississauga received a $50,000 Age-Friendly Community Planning Grant from the Province of Ontario to develop an action plan towards becoming a World Health Organization (WHO) designated “Age-Friendly Community.” This internationally-recognized designation will acknowledge Mississauga as a municipality that supports older adult participation in social, civic, employment, communication and healthy active living opportunities.
“Diversity, equity and inclusion will be the key drivers for developing and implementing our age-friendly action plan,” said Mayor Bonnie Crombie. “Being an ‘Age-Friendly Community’ is a way of life that requires our ongoing effort to meet the growing and changing needs of our citizens. I welcome the opportunity to continue to work with our partners including the Region of Peel, community organizations, service providers and our Older Adult Advisory Panel who were instrumental in preparing the successful grant application.”
In 2014, the City formed an Older Adult Advisory Panel comprised of 11 members and six City staff. Their mandate is to give older adults opportunities to exchange information and advice on developing and improving older adult services in the community. Among a number of initiatives, the major goal will be to pursue the Age-Friendly City designation. This will be done by working with the City, community groups, volunteers and residents through Community Centre Older Adult Committees.
Together they will develop a plan that involves an age-friendly community self-assessment, reviewing and updating the City’s 2009 Older Adult Plan and establishing action teams to move forward the key priorities of the WHO’s Age-Friendly Cities framework:
- community and health care
- social participation
- outdoor spaces and buildings
- respect and social inclusion
- civic participation and employment
- communication and information
“Mississauga is committed to being a city where people can lead purposeful and active lives, live in their community with dignity, integrity and independence and experience a diverse range of lifestyle opportunities to purse their personal interests,” added Acting Recreation Director Laura Piette. “While older adults will be a priority for this work, the results will create a more inclusive, safe, healthy and accessible community for all of Mississauga’s 757,000 residents.”
For more information, contact Lorena Smith, Community Development Co-ordinator, Older Adults at 905-615-3200, ext. 3718 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mississauga is Canada’s 6th largest city and includes a growing and diverse older adult population. Fifty per cent of Mississauga residents are born outside Canada and adults over the age of 55 account for approximately 20 per cent of the city’s population. This percentage is expected to exceed 38 per cent by 2031. Older adult interests are served by 11 older adult groups delivering activities and services through the City’s 11 community centres.