Guy Luscombe, Amelia Starkey, Jon Johannsen, Carmel Boyce, Sarah Haq, Kerryn Lockett, Elissa McMillan
Age and Dementia Friendly Streetscapes Toolkit
Sydney, like most cities in the developed world, has an increasingly older population who want to stay in their homes and participate in their local neighbourhoods as they age. It is better for them – they are less isolated and have better health outcomes – and it is cheaper for the Government. However, these neighbourhoods often inhibit that participation, they are not age friendly.
It is in this light that the Age’n’dem Age and Dementia Friendly Streetscapes Toolkit was developed. An initiative of Moonee Valley City Council, the toolkit gives practical advice about the planning, design and details that make streets and places of local neighbourhood town centres more age and dementia friendly. It was developed using the best evidence-based material available and with a local user reference group to ensure it was easy to understand and meaningful.
To this end, one of its unique features is that it is structured around the user, following ‘a day in the life’ of a typical older person, “Maria”, giving appropriate advice as she progresses, supported by case studies and references. Its focus on dementia is another unique and transformational feature.
It turns out there are some fairly simple, non-invasive, non-stigmatising tools that can help make the public places of neighbourhoods more age and dementia friendly. Simple, but potentially life changing interventions that not only help older people but could improve the community of neighbourhoods for all Sydneysiders.