San Diego CA— The San Diego Foundation today announced $229,850 in grants that will help local municipalities launch age-friendly programs and enact policies that support quality of life for older San Diegans.
According to the U.S. Administration on Aging, the population of San Diegans 65 and over is expected to double between 2000 and 2030. To prepare for this shift, The San Diego Foundation is committed to growing the adoption of age-friendly action plans by local municipalities throughout the region. To date, the Age-Friendly Communities Program at The San Diego Foundation has facilitated the age-friendly efforts of six municipalities – the cities of Carlsbad, Chula Vista, La Mesa, National City, San Diego, and County of San Diego – by providing technical assistance grantmaking and support.
The grantmaking comes as California Governor Gavin Newsom released the new Master Plan for Aging, which outlines a 10-year blueprint for leaders to build an equitable California where everyone has the opportunity to age with dignity and independence in the place that they call home.
“Meeting the needs and preferences of our aging community is increasingly important as we grow a more vibrant region,” shared Katie Rast, Director of Community Impact at The San Diego Foundation. “By implementing policies and programs that address these shifting demographics, we can better utilize the talents and energy of our older adults and build thriving communities for all San Diegans.”
The Age-Friendly Communities Program promotes systems-level change in partnership with experts on aging, community advocates, as well as local governments and agencies, including the County of San Diego’s Aging & Independence Services. Together, partners prioritize age-friendly initiatives in eight domain areas, including transportation, housing, outdoor spaces and buildings, community support and health services, respect and social inclusion, communication and information, and civic participation, and employment.
The $229,850 in grants will support five initiatives led by the municipalities who, in partnership with The San Diego Foundation, have signed on as global age-friendly communities, including:
City of Carlsbad
The $50,000 grant will support the Move Carlsbad program, which increases personal mobility, independence, and socialization opportunities for adults over the age of 65. The City of Carlsbad will provide education on app-based rideshare transportation, and partner with a rideshare provider to offer redeemable transportation vouchers in order to encourage older adults to use these types of mobility services and feel confident in doing so.
City of Chula Vista
This $49,850 grant will fund the Age-Friendly Communities Program Technical Support, which addresses social isolation, technology barriers and connecting older adults to resources. This program will utilize telephone service to provide information, automated check-ins and social networking for all older adults in Chula Vista, and in doing so, address immediate needs and connect the adult population to resources and each other.
City of National City
The $50,000 grant will help support Senior Saturdays at Kimball Park, which strives to improve the lives of residents’ livability by building communities where they can stay connected and meaningfully engaged. The City of National City will hold monthly social, artistic and cultural events at Kimball Park, offering age-related resources that address health services, transportation, housing, social participation and more.
City of San Diego
The $50,000 grant will help support the Connecting and Engaging program on behalf of the City of San Diego, Parks and Recreation Department to decrease social isolation. The program will provide and promote opportunities and education for older adults on the use of technology in order to access social, fitness, cultural, intergeneration and educational virtual opportunities, resulting in improved self-confidence.
La Mesa Park and Recreation Foundation
The $30,000 grant will support the La Mesa Community Garden on behalf of La Mesa Park and Recreation Foundation, to create the first public community garden in La Mesa. This space will provide opportunities for adults over 50 to participate in events, garden classes, and youth gardening education sessions to encourage social participation, improve access to healthy eating, exercise and active living in an inter-generational space.