Rural BC is experiencing a rapidly aging population, and long-time residents are choosing to remain in their 'home' communities. Most of these communities face significant challenges in meeting the mobility needs of seniors, including harsh winters, poor physical infrastructure, and lack of services.
Clearwater BC has made a commitment to becoming an age-friendly community. This project focuses on seniors mobility in the community. It emerged from a well-established partnership involving the CDI, the District of Clearwater and the Age-Friendly Community Committee, which is comprised of seniors organizations and organizations serving seniors.
The research project will engage local seniors in an assessment of shopping and service areas, community facilities, walking routes, and transportation. These field sessions will be complemented by workshops to review, and increase awareness of, the issues. The project will also involve in-depth interviews to explore considerations such as safety, accessibility, affordability, inclusiveness, helpfulness, and respect.
The final report from the project will include information and recommendations that can be used in planning and decision-making around mobility, an action plan, and the community mobility assessment tool that will be developed. This will be a resource that Clearwater can use into the future. It will also be distributed for use and adaptation by other communities in BC, Canada and beyond.
Research Team: Greg Halseth, UNBC; Leslie Grouix, District of Clearwater; Donald Manson, UNBC; Neil Hanlon, UNBC; Dawn Hemingway, UNBC; Laura Ryser UNBC; Jessica Blewett, UNBC; Anne Hogan RDFFG;