Tufts Health Plan Foundation has announced a two-year grant of $200,000 to the University of Massachusetts Foundation to provide strategic support for the Age-Friendly Boston initiative, which supports healthy aging through access to community resources, services, and supports that older people need and want.
This is one of 16 new community investments totaling nearly $1.8 million that reflect the foundation’s commitment to make cities and towns great places to grow up and grow old.
“Each community will follow its own path to becoming age- and dementia-friendly. Support from Tufts Health Plan Foundation helps ensure resources reach underrepresented communities at greatest risk for disparities,” said Nora Moreno Cargie, president of the foundation and vice president, corporate citizenship for Tufts Health Plan. “Everyone has a voice; it’s important that we listen.”
Age-Friendly Boston, which represents a partnership of the City of Boston Commission on Affairs of the Elderly, AARP Massachusetts and the Gerontology Institute at UMass Boston, follows the framework established by the World Health Organization for age-friendly communities. Over time, the foundation has invested nearly $500,000 with UMass Boston to help develop the city’s initiative.
With a 75-point action plan in place as a blueprint, the initiative is moving forward to make sure the city’s structures and services are accessible and inclusive to resident of all ages.
The research team from UMass Boston’s Gerontology Institute helped develop the action plan and will work throughout the process to build collaborations with community and faith organizations, businesses, older people, and other key partners. The team will evaluate progress toward plan goals and develop a strategy for engaging community members and circulating information about city programs and series for older people more widely.
“The city of Boston has made a major commitment to age-friendly initiatives and we are proud to be a part of that effort,” said professor Jan Mutchler, who has led the Gerontology Institute team. “We’re grateful to the Tufts Health Plan Foundation for their continuing support of this work.”