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Napier subject of age-friendly project

Napier chosen as one of just six cities to trial a new tool that will assess our 'age-friendliness'.

News Age Friendly Volunteers2

Carol Brunton, Potace Bennett, and Doug Neilson, three of the volunteers who will be collecting information about Napier’s neighbourhoods.

A new age-friendly project may soon be coming to a neighbourhood near you.

Napier is one of only six places in New Zealand chosen to trial the participatory research tool OPERAT (Older People’s External Residential Assessment Tool), where seniors collect information about their local neighbourhoods.

The volunteer data collectors, including members of Napier City Council’s Positive Ageing Strategy Reference Group, Napier Community Patrol, Age Concern Napier, and Maori Women’s Welfare League, plan to have their first data collection day next Tuesday, 23 October.

The data collection will run for approximately a month.

The volunteers will do street assessments and look at the age-friendliness of footpaths, street lights, noise, traffic, and green spaces.

Napier City Council’s Community Services is coordinating the project, in conjunction with Massey University.

Napier is the only one of a few New Zealand cities to receive central Government funding for an age-friendly project, from the Office for Seniors, which is part of the Ministry of Social Development.

The volunteers will be making observations from the street about property (no particular properties are identified in the final scores) and making street assessments, looking at the age-friendliness of, for example, footpaths, street lights, noise, traffic, and green spaces/greenery.

The information they collect may potentially be used by Council to help inform its Positive Ageing Strategy, and by other organisations wanting to build a picture of how ‘age-friendly’ our communities are.

18 October 2018

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