Creative Ageing included in NSW Government Ageing Strategy
10 July 2012
“Active participation in cultural and creative activities supports better physical and mental wellbeing among older people” according to the NSW Government’s new Ageing Strategy just released. This important acknowledgement of the value of creative ageing aligns with NSW 2012 (Goal 27), founded on the Government’s Social Policy Framework, Smarter, Stronger, Healthier, Safer.
The new whole of government ageing strategy augurs well for the future of arts and health programming for older people in New South Wales.
At the launch, Minister for Ageing Andrew Constance said “Seniors today have the opportunity to enjoy more years of healthy, active living than any generation before them. The NSW Ageing Strategy outlines practical commitments, like low cost technology training, to help people age well and encourage them to share with the community their wisdom and experience”.
The number of people aged 65 and over will more than double by 2050. Three quarters of people over 65 and half of all people over 80 live independently without using care services.
Minister Constance said an ageing community has big implications for health, transport and urban planning and that a whole-of-government approach would be taken, in implementing the strategy.
“We want to encourage people to plan for the future. To make decisions about their health, where they want to live, how long they want to work for and how much money they need so that they can enjoy their later years,” he said.
The Ageing Strategy will provide $500,000 over two years to fund low cost technology training for older people.
“We are living in an online world. Providing affordable training on how to use computers, smartphones and tablets will give seniors the ability to find information and the chance to connect with people here and around the world,” said Minister Constance.
Highlights of the NSW Ageing Strategy include:
|Linking seniors to information||The Seniors Card Program will be expanded to include government information and information on local community activities|
|Living active lives||The Government will promote physical and recreational activities, including cultural and creative opportunities.|
|Travelling safely||The Government will support the independence and safety of older people as they move from driving to other forms of transport.|
|Work skills, workplace value||People in their 40s and 50s will be a priority for training programs. This initiative will also seek to reduce barriers to older people staying in work.|
|My life, my decisions||Community education will encourage more people to complete wills, powers of attorney, enduring guardianships and advanced care directives.|
|Public private partnerships for population ageing||The Government will establish an open dialogue with the private sector to maximise the commercial opportunities as a result of the population ageing.|
|Age friendly local communities||Grant programs will be supported by the Government to help local councils meet the needs of an ageing population including the accessibility of the built environment and community activities to build social connection, which encompasses creative and cultural opportunities.|