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Monday, April 22, 2024
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Take Lake County Age Friendly Survey to Help Improve Our Communities and Quality of Life-For All Ages

What do you think is most important for us to consider as we work towards a more Age Friendly Lake County?

“In October 2021, Lake County joined a global network of Age-Friendly Communities, an initiative of AARP. The AARP is a non-profit that focuses on advocating for issues affecting those over the age of 50, on a local, state and national level. AARP has over 38 million members. This network provides a structured process that guides change and serves as a catalyst to educate, encourage, promote and recognize improvements that benefit residents of all ages and life stages. Age-Friendly Communities promote healthy lifestyles for people of ALL ages through eight interconnected Domains of Livability,” states the survey’s introduction. The eight interconnected domains of livability are civic participation and employment, health services and community support, communication and information, transportation, outdoor spaces and buildings, housing, social participation, and respect and social inclusion.

Four local Lake County services (Lake County Health and Human Services, Community Partners, North Shore Area Partners and the Arrowhead Area Agency on Aging) want to hear from community members about what they think would make Lake County a more liveable area for older residents and those of all ages. Your participation in this survey will help them develop an action plan over the next five years, and beyond, to increase the quality of life for all residents. The importance of collecting survey data from local residents is an integral part of their ability to adjust to the ever-changing demographics of the area. There are currently more Minnesotans over the age of 65 than school age children in the state. This is a first in Minnesota’s history.

The survey covers all of the above topics and invites participants to rate the quality of care and services currently in place. It also encourages folks to add anything else they may wish to see or may need in the areas of housing, transportation, accessibility, and community support.

Questions on the survey ask how housing impacts people’s ability to age in place in Lake County, how transportation needs impact the residents, how they are able to meet individuals needs that may require more assistance to stay in the area, how they can afford those services, as well as how to ensure public spaces are adequately accessible and useful to residents. The survey also asks how to keep residents engaged in the community with social activities to maintain mental health, looks at opportunities for residents to work for pay or volunteer their skills, how to keep people connected in today’s modern society of technology and communication, and also how to assist in all ages feeling valued. This survey looks at how to work towards sharing intergenerational wealth and knowledge where all individuals are honored for what they have to offer.

What would make Lake County a great place to grow up and to grow old? The survey should take anywhere from 5-20 minutes depending on how in depth you would like to get. You can find the survey in paper form at Lake County Service Center in Silver Bay, at the North Shore Area Partners office, the Clair Nelson Community Center in Finland, and at the Silver Bay Public Library. If you prefer to take it online, please scan the QR code or go to: https://bit.ly/Age-FriendlyLC.

Participants in the survey will be entered into a drawing to win a $50 gift card! Your opinion and needs matter! Help by contributing your thoughts so they can work together on building a thriving and sustainable future for all Lake County residents. If you are able to assist an older person who may not be as tech savvy, please take the time to give them a voice in moving forward and advocating for a quality life for all that call the beautiful North Shore home.

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