Building communities that are responsive to the needs of older adults is essential if our society is to remain relevant and responsive to this growing population. Older adults are an asset, and contribute their experience and knowledge to our communities. The Foundation will make investments that promote healthy living across the life span with an emphasis on older adults. We will move communities toward achieving age-friendly policies and practices that are relevant, focus on the most vulnerable, and include older adults in the process.
Healthy Living, Healthy Aging
Healthy aging begins at birth – it is a lifelong process shaped by individual and community-level factors, social determinants, as well as nutrition and physical activity. One lens the Foundation will use for its investments is the World Health Organization (WHO) framework of “active aging” through age-friendly cities. Age-friendly cities provide: access to health care and healthy choices; opportunities to participate in community; and safety that promotes peace of mind and quality of life as people age. The Foundation will fund programs that support individual behavior change through community-level systems and policies.
Collaboration is Key
Systems and policy change require intentional coordination and collaboration among key stakeholders within networks in and outside of the field: community-based organizations, municipalities, health care providers, social service agencies, businesses and consumers – everyone within a community setting and importantly, users of programs and services. To effectively build healthy communities and age-friendly cities, organizations must be inclusive in their approach, maximizing resources to achieve better outcomes.
Some populations and communities are at higher risk for health disparities due to social determinants, including economic status and class. As we age, these disparities can become more profound. The Foundation prioritizes investments in underserved areas of Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island, and in older adults at risk economically and socially.
Learn more about our Focus Areas:
Please note: These focus areas offer guidance on the types of programs and activities the Foundation will fund. If you have an idea for a program and have questions about whether that program or idea aligns with our strategies, don’t hesitate to contact us. We will work with you.