The Herald Bulletin

Evening Update

Local Business

October 21, 2013

Survey shows area seniors like their communities but concerned about health/wellness

People ages 60 and older in east central Indiana overall have a good view of their communities as a place to live but remain concerned about health and wellness issues and about access to community information, according to a survey conducted this spring.

The Community Assessment Survey of Older Adults (CASOA) was part of a statewide effort to determine needs and viewpoints on a variety of issues facing older adults.

LifeStream, the local Aging and Disability Resource Center for East Central Indiana, was among the 16 Area Agencies on Aging throughout Indiana that participated in the survey about six key areas: overall community quality, community and belonging, community information, productive activities, health and wellness, community design and land use.

The survey was conducted by the National Research Center (NRC) in Boulder, Colo., and was done with assistance of the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration and the Indiana Association of Area Agencies on Aging. LifeStream, which is one of the AAAs in Indiana, covered Delaware, Blackford, Jay, Randolph, Henry, Madison and Grant counties. The local results were statistically weighted to reflect population of the area.

Questions included respondents’ perceptions about the communities in which they live, their overall physical and mental health, whether they think their neighborhood or living condition is safe, whether they feel there are adequate community resources available, how they feel about retirement and more.

The results give an overall picture of how adults 60 and older view various dimensions of their community and it also gives us information to consider as we look at programs and services, resource allocation, advocacy and engagement for older adults in our area. The long-term goal is to have a community of elders that is more engaged, supportive and supported, empowered, independent and vibrant.

Overall, most of the adults ages 60 and older surveyed gave high ratings to their community as a place to live, and about three-quarters of older adults said they would recommend their community to others. Almost three-quarters of respondents had lived in the community for more than 20 years and almost 9 in 10 plan to stay in the area throughout retirement.

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