Written by Adam Rees, BAB Director
Bristol is well known as loving a “city” tag. Whether it's city of sport, learning city or green capital. We like to celebrate activities and themes under one of these banners. When BAB proposed to work with Bristol Council on achieving “AgeFriendly City” status, many thought that this was just another epithet.
The World Health Organisation manages a global network of Age Friendly communities, and rather than being a title to announce and celebrate, the goal is to make a city a place that consists older people in all aspects of the city, rather than just in terms of adult social care.
Why do we choose to install benches that look “designer” but don’t provide necessary back support?
Why do we try and put as much information onto one tiny bus timetable, when the people who need it can’t read it?
In June, we will be launching our Age Friendly charter that will celebrate what we already do and encourage people to find ways of making bristol more “age friendly” through some slight changes structure, font or policy. We want to get local issues (like benches and community activities) as well as city-wide issues (such as bus routes, housing policy or health), but we need communities, organisations and public sector bodies to work together on this.
Obviously, many of the issues that stop Bristol being age-friendly (lack of toilets, cycle paths, buses!) also stop the city being child friendly, dementia friendly or just friendly! While BAB's priority is older people, our work will benefit many different groups in the city, and we are proud of that.
This is why we have come together with a number of groups to collectively work under the banner “Bristol: A City for ALL Ages”. We each have our own priority groups, but we are committed to supporting each other in our work and coming together when we can to ensure the best us.
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