(2/5/2019) Fremantle adopts new Age Friendly City Plan
Ensuring older people can live full and healthy lives and remain active in their community is the goal of the new Age Friendly City Plan recently adopted by Fremantle Council.
Through the Age Friendly City Plan 2019-2024 the City of Fremantle will aim to decrease loneliness, increase social participation and volunteering, provide inter-generational and cross-cultural activities and improve communication about services and opportunities for people over the age of 55.
Community Development Director Fiona Hodges said the City’s journey to become an Age Friendly City started in 2010.
“Fremantle has both a higher median age and a larger proportion of people over 55 compared to the rest of Western Australia,” Ms Hodges said.
“We’re also a destination city that attracts visitors of all ages, so it’s important that we’re very conscious of catering for the needs of older people in everything we do.
“The process to update our Age Friendly City Plan started last year with a working group made up of community members, representatives of key organisations, City staff and councillors.
“We really wanted to learn from the lived experience of our senior citizens, so more than 150 people were engaged either online, through surveys, at events or through one-on-one meetings.
“One member of the working group, Betty Garlett, came up with the brilliant idea of placing a stamped and addressed postcard into prescription bags at the chemist as a way of contacting more isolated residents.
“All of that input was fed back into the new plan, which really prioritises positive ageing opportunities for the Fremantle community and making sure Fremantle is a great place for older people to visit.”
The City of Fremantle was awarded membership to the World Health Organisation (WHO) Age Friendly City Global Network in 2016.
The Age Friendly City Plan was developed in accordance with the WHO framework for healthy and active ageing based on social participation, community support and health, housing, civic participation and employment, communication and information, transportation, outdoor spaces and buildings, and respect and inclusion.
Fremantle was recognised for its efforts to become an Age Friendly City by taking out the Age Friendly Local Government category at the WA Seniors Awards in November 2018.
The City provides a range of low cost or free activities for seniors, including the Wanjoo Lounge, Come and Try programs, community forums, social dancing and in-home library services.
The City also offers special programs for seniors as part of its mainstream community services at the Fremantle Leisure Centre, Fremantle Library, The Meeting Place and the Fremantle Arts Centre.
For more information visit the Positive Ageing page on the City’s website.