Age-Friendly Committee strives to support Harrison citizens of all ages

The purpose of the Age-Friendly Committee is to improve the quality of life for residents of all ages.

Living comfortably can be difficult at any age, but the Harrison Hot Springs Village Council’s new Age-Friendly Committee is working to change that.

The purpose of the Age-Friendly Committee is to improve the quality of life for residents of all ages by creating opportunities for improving health, community participation and security.

“It allows people to stay in their homes,” explained Councillor John Buckley, who is also the chair of the committee. “If you can get volunteer groups to help people, then they can age longer in their homes and not have to go into care units, but it also allows them to get involved.”

The Age-Friendly Committee will work based off the recommendations made by Cherie Enns Consulting, who was contracted in early 2014 to analyze the village’s compliance with current age friendly standards.

While the village is an age-friendly community, according to the World Health Organization’s standards, four Priority Action Areas have been identified for the committee: transportation and built environment, social and civic participation, environment and volunteerism and housing and health.

The committee’s first meeting was on May 16 and several ideas are already in the works, including the dedication of a section of the community bulletin board for age friendly notices and activities.

“We did a round table to see what we can come up with,” Buckley said. “We had some ideas and now we’re doing the checking. We’re going to do our homework and see what we can actually achieve and do.”

Although the committee will work closely with the senior community, Buckley noted that youth are also included in the committee’s future plans.

“It’s not just to encompass the elderly, this is for young people as well,” he said. “We’re going to get something going for [youth].”

The committee membership currently includes Elaine Marrington, Donna Bruins, Ray Hooper, Michael Scott, Harold Bruins and Councillor Buckley, but they are still looking for more people to get involved.

The next meeting of the Age Friendly Committee will be on July 6 at 9:30 am at the Village of Harrison Hot Springs Municipal Hall. For more information, or to get involved, contact Chief Administrative Officer Madeline McDonald at 604-796-2171 or mmcdonald@harrisonhotsprings.ca.