ABOUT THE AGE-FRIENDLY COMMUNITIES PROGRAM
The AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities encourages states, cities, towns and rural areas to prepare for the rapid aging of the U.S. population by paying increased attention to the environmental, economic and social factors that influence the health and well-being of older adults. This network is part of the larger WHO Global Network for Age-friendly Cities and Communities. The WHO Global Network for Age-friendly Cities and Communities (the Network) was established to foster the exchange of experience and mutual learning between cities and communities worldwide.
WHO IS INVOLVED?
Currently, there are over 200 cities and counties in the United States that are listed as part of the network. Miami-Dade County joined the network in November 2016. The following communities have joined in Miami-Dade County:
- Coral Gables (May 2018)
- Cutler Bay (March 2016)
- Doral (2020)
- Hialeah (2021)
- Miami (August 2018)
- Miami Beach (February 2020)
- Miami-Dade County (November 2016)
- Miami Lakes (June 2018)
- Miami Shores (November 2018)
- Palmetto Bay (March 2017)
- Pinecrest (July 2016)
HOW TO JOIN THE NETWORK OF AGE-FRIENDLY COMMUNITIES
Joining the network means that a municipality is committed toward making their community more age-friendly.
- STEP 1: ENTERING THE NETWORK
- Communities seeking to enroll in the are required to submit an application, as well as a letter of commitment, which must be signed by the jurisdiction’s highest elected official.
- Both of these documents should be provided to the AARP staff member with whom the community has been working. Applications can be emailed to: LCantwell@aarp.org.
- In addition to the required application form and letter, some communities choose to pass a resolution or issue a proclamation.
- STEP 2: PLANNING PHASE
- This step has four elements:
- Establishment of mechanisms to involve older people throughout the Age-Friendly city cycle
- A baseline assessment of the age-friendliness of the city.
- Development of a 3-year city wide plan of action based on assessment findings
- Identification of indicators to monitor progress
- Age-Friendly Assessments
- Action Plan
- STEP 3: IMPLEMENTATION & EVALUATION
- On completion of the planning phase, and no later than two years after joining the Network, cities will submit their action plan to WHO for review and endorsement. Upon endorsement by WHO, cities will then have a three-year period of implementation.
- At the end of the period of implementation, cities will be required to submit a progress report to WHO outlining progress against indicators developed in Phase 1.
- WHO Resources
- Miami-Dade Resources
- STEP 4: CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENTS
- Upon completion of phase 3, cities will be able to continue their membership to the Network by entering into further implementation cycles and continuing to stay connected to the network.
- This step has four elements:
THE BENEFITS OF MEMBERSHIP
Members of the AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities become part of a global network of communities that are committed to giving their older resident the opportunity to live rewarding, productive, and safe lives. The benefits of membership include:
- Access to a global network of participating communities, as well as aging and civil society experts
- Access to key information about the program, such as the latest news and information about best practices, events, results, challenges and new initiatives
- Opportunities for partnerships with other cities, both domestic and international
- Mentoring and peer-review evaluation by member cities
- Public recognition of the community’s commitment to become more age-friendly.
- Speaking engagements at conferences and events hosted by AARP and promotion through AARP’s media channels
- In Miami-Dade, connecting to other local communities that are also working to become age-friendly to share ideas, resources and next steps.