Age-Friendly Communities in Manitoba

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1 Age-Friendly Communities in Manitoba Rural Municipality of Macdonald, Manitoba Age-Friendly Rural Municipality of Macdonald Community Survey February 2010 Individuals in the Rural Municipality of Macdonald completed a brief questionnaire, adapted from the Centre on Aging, University of Manitoba, to collect information on the age-friendliness of their community. A total of 95 questionnaires were completed from seven communities in the Rural Municipality of Macdonald including Starbuck, Brunkild, Domain, LaSalle, Oak Bluff, and Sandford. This summary reflects the responses for the Rural Municipality of Macdonald.

2 Summary of Survey Responses The Rural Municipality (R.M.) of Macdonald is currently participating in the Age- Friendly Manitoba Initiative supported by the Seniors and Healthy Aging Secretariat of the Province of Manitoba. To collect information on the age-friendliness of the R.M., the Macdonald Age-Friendly Advisory Committee distributed a questionnaire to six communities (Brunkild, Domain, La Salle, Oak Bluff, Sanford and Starbuck) within the R.M. of Macdonald in May of A total of 95 questionnaires were completed as follows: Brunkild (7) Domain (8) La Salle (33) Oak Bluff (13) Sanford (12) Starbuck (17) Five individuals did not indicate which community they were from. This report summarizes the findings from the 95 individuals who completed the Age-Friendly Communities Survey; 53% identified themselves as a senior. Most Age-Friendly Areas Residents in the R.M. of Macdonald identified the following areas as the most agefriendly: Seniors in my community are generally treated with respect (87.2%). Seniors feel safe when walking alone during the day in my community (86.3%). Snow clearing in my community is done in a timely manner (80.0%).

3 Least Age-Friendly Areas Through the survey, residents identified the following areas as least age-friendly: Sidewalks in most or all areas of my community are well maintained (paved, even and not a lot of cracks) (17.4%). Transportation (not provided by family or friends), such as that available through Macdonald Services to Seniors in my community is affordable for seniors (17.0%). The health care services that are provided in my community meet needs of seniors (16.8%). Official, written information, such as forms or brochures is adapted to the needs of seniors in my community (e.g., large print) (15.2%). There are enough programs in my community that bring seniors and children together (e.g., school reading programs) (13.2%). There is enough assistance available in my community for completing official forms (e.g., help with filling out income tax forms) (13.0%). There are enough exercise classes specifically for seniors in my community (10.8%). The waiting times to get into senior housing are reasonable in my community (10.1%). There is enough housing for seniors in my community (9.5%). The job opportunities in my community accommodate the needs of seniors (e.g., part-time work is available) (6.8%). There is enough subsidized housing for low-income seniors in my community (6.7%). There are enough lifelong learning programs specifically for seniors in my community (e.g., computer courses) (5.5%). There are enough paid job opportunities for seniors in my community (5.4%). Public telephone answering services in my community are adapted to the needs of seniors (e.g., instructions are given slowly enough) (4.3%). There is enough rental housing in my community for people 55 years and older (3.2%). There is enough rental housing for younger people in my community (3.2%). The transportation that is available for individuals with disabilities is sufficient in my community (2.2%).

4 Priority Areas Individuals were also asked to write down the top five issues they felt needed to be most urgently addressed in their community. Sixty-seven participants (70.5%) identified at least one priority area. These written comments were grouped into the priority areas as shown in Figure 1: Housing (e.g., 55+ housing, affordable housing, condos, rental housing, affordable housing for young and old, one-floor housing) Sidewalks/road crossings (e.g., fix and enlarge sidewalks, sidewalks need repairs, improve sidewalks, more sidewalks, safe road crossings on main streets) Recreation/social programs (e.g., affordable sports/recreational activities, exercise centre, drop-in centre for seniors to use during the day and teens in the evening, social activities for men, new community facility) Community services/programs (e.g., mobile library service, access to shopping, delivery service for groceries, meal program, help with renovations around the house) Health services (e.g., doctors, medical services, medical facilities, pharmacy, home care); safety (e.g., improve lighting on streets, petty theft and vandalism, more RCMP presence, control speeding on residential streets) Transportation (e.g., transportation, Handi Transit, regular shuttle to and from the city for shopping and medical appointments) Information (e.g, more information on services needed, more information on what is going on in community, notify by phone of activities, services provided to seniors should be more advertised and explained) Building accessibility/public washrooms (e.g., automatic doors at bank/ credit union, easy access to all businesses, public washrooms, wheelchair accessibility); and, Walking paths/bike trails (e.g., walking paths, hiking trails, bike trails).

5 Figure 1: Priority Areas Identified by Participants Housing 61% Sidewalks/road crossings Recreation/social programs Community services/ programs Health services Safety Transportation Information Building accessibility/ public washrooms Walking paths/bike trails 36% 31% 27% 24% 24% 21% 19% 18% 18% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% % of Participants who Identified Area as a Priority Age-Friendly Survey Responses Housing There is enough housing for seniors Housing for seniors is affordable There is enough subsidized housing for low-income seniors The waiting times to get into senior housing are reasonable There is enough housing for younger people There is enough rental housing for people 55 years and older There is enough rental housing for younger people Transportation The transportation that is available for individuals with disabilities is sufficient. The public transportation (not provided by family or friends), such as that available through Macdonald Services to Seniors is affordable for seniors. A Handi Transit is a service that would provide transportation for people who are unable to travel independently. Services are typically offered on a cost recovery basis. Would you use this service?

6 Safety Crime and vandalism are a problem Seniors feel safe when walking alone during the day Seniors feel safe when walking alone during the night There is adequate lighting in my community Infrastructure There are sidewalks linking residences and essential services in most or all areas of my community The road signs are adapted to the needs of older drivers (e.g., large signs) Sidewalks in most or all areas of my community are well maintained (paved, even and not a lot of cracks) Snow clearing is done in a timely manner There are enough street crosswalks in business areas There are enough street crosswalks in busy residential and/ or recreation areas There are enough public washrooms in key areas of my community (e.g., business and recreation areas) Most or all businesses are readily accessible to seniors (e.g., have wheelchair ramps, automatic doors) Social Participation/Recreation Walking trails are accessible to seniors There are enough exercise classes specifically for seniors There are enough recreation programs specifically for seniors (e.g., card games, arts, crafts) There are enough lifelong learning programs specifically for seniors (e.g., computer courses) There are enough programs that bring seniors and children together (e.g., school reading programs) Recreational activities, such as exercise and other recreational programs, are generally affordable for seniors

7 Community/Work Force Participation There are enough volunteer opportunities for seniors There is enough official recognition for seniors who volunteer (e.g., an appreciation banquet or volunteer awards) There are enough paid job opportunities for seniors The job opportunities accommodate the needs of seniors (e.g., part-time work is available) Information/Advocacy Information about community events is readily available to seniors. Information about the services and programs provided by various organizations is readily available to seniors. Official, written information, such as forms or brochures is adapted to the needs of seniors (e.g., large print). Public telephone answering services are adapted to the needs of seniors (e.g., instructions are given slowly enough). There is enough assistance available for completing official forms (e.g., help with filling out income tax forms). There are enough seniors advocacy services available (e.g., Macdonald Services to Seniors) Respect and Social Inclusion Seniors are generally treated with respect Public Meetings specifically include seniors Planning processes in my community specifically consider the needs of seniors

8 Health and Community Services The home care services for seniors are sufficient The services that help seniors around the home (e.g., snow removal, lawn care, cleaning, etc.) are sufficient The health care services that are provided in my community meet the needs of seniors Access to health care that are not provided in my community is generally convenient (e.g., services not too far away, appointment times are convenient). I am aware of the services available through Home Care I am aware of the services available through Macdonald Services to Seniors I am aware of the services available through Public Health I am aware of the services available through White Plains Recreation District I am aware of the services available through Emergency Services I am aware of the services available through Regional Health Authority I am aware of the services available through local community groups I am aware of the services available through Churches I am aware of the services available through RCMP I am aware of the services available through Macdonald Fire Department The views expressed herein reflect the opinions of the participants and do not necessarily represent the views of the Age-Friendly Communities Community-University Research Alliance (CURA) or the Centre on Aging. This summary was prepared by the Age-Friendly Communities CURA. The Age-Friendly Communities CURA is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. Team leader: Dr. Verena Menec, Canada Research Chair in Healthy Aging, Director, Centre on Aging, University of Manitoba For more information contact: Centre on Aging, University of Manitoba 338 Isbister Building Winnipeg MB R3T 2N2 Phone: (204) Fax: (204) Web site: Published: February 2010

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