Creating Community for a Lifetime
Update Report June, 2005

in this issue

Join Us!

CCFL Update


The Big Picture


Join Us!

Mark your calendars for the morning of October 7, 2005 (time TBD). CCFL is planning another community- wide event at Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park. More info coming soon!

For a complete listing of all upcoming CCFL meeting dates click here.

If you would like to help build an elder-friendly community in Kent County, contact Nora Barkey, CCFL initiative coordinator at (616)222-7012 or

Check out the CCFL initiative website at www.

Creating Community for a Lifetime Sponsors

Ensuring Kent County is a community that optimizes quality of life, independence and choice for older persons and all residents through collaborative planning and community action.

  • CCFL Update
  • Tremendous progress is being made in the CCFL work groups! The Caregiving and Transportation groups are sending their recommendations to the Core Council and the Awareness of Services group is putting the final touches on their work. Led by Bev Drake and Priscilla Kimboko, the Social and Civic Engagement Work Group launched in May with a lively discussion of current community resources for volunteerism, life-long learning, and employment for older adults. There is still time to join the group! Finally, the Community Based Services work group, led by Andy Zylstra, Department of Human Services, and Tom Czerwinski, AAAWM, will launch July 28. Read on for more information about each of the work groups:

    Affordable Housing and Home Modification Work Groups

    The Vision to End Homelessness is developing community recommendations that ensure the sufficiency and adequacy of housing in Kent County for all populations. Click here for more information.

    Awareness of Services Work Group

    The CCFL Awareness of Services work group is addressing elder knowledge of services - especially for those who are isolated, of low income, or people of color - in order to ensure all elders can access needed information and available resources. Click here for more information.

    Caregiving Work Group

    CCFL is working in concert with the Caregiver Resource Network to develop recommendations that address support for elder caregivers. The group has completed a draft of the community recommendations for review by the Core Council. Click here for more information.

    Community Based Services Work Group

    The Community Based Services work group will hold its first meeting on July 28 at 9:00 a.m. Please contact Nora Barkey at (616)222-7012 to join! Click here for more information.

    Social and Civic Engagement Work Group

    The Social and Civic Engagement work group is addressing the desire of older adults to maintain connections, to remain active through volunteer or paid activities, and to have opportunities to share their experience, creativity and wisdom in order to ensure that Kent County benefits from the contributions of older persons. Click here for more information.

    Transportation Work Group

    The Kent County Emergency Needs Task Force Transportation Subcommittee created time on their agenda to discuss the needs of older adults and to develop recommendations. Edits are now being made to the final draft of recommendations before being passed to the Core Council for their review. Click here for more information.

  • Calendar
  • Community Event - Save the Date

    The Advocates for Senior Issues, Area Agency on Aging of Western Michigan, and Grand Rapids Community Foundation will be co-hosting a community-wide event during the morning of October 7, 2005 at Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park. This event will build on last year's gathering featuring Marc Freedman which publicly launched the Creating Community for a Lifetime initiative. More details will be available in next month's e-newsletter. But, mark your calendars now - you won't want to miss it!

    CCFL Meeting Dates

    For a complete listing of all upcoming CCFL meeting dates click here.

    Learning Opportunities

    Click here for a listing of upcoming forums and conferences throughout the region.

  • The Big Picture
  • Smart Growth, Livable Communities, Aging- Sensitive Communities = Communities for a Lifetime!
    As CCFL work groups focus on developing recommendations for specific issues - housing, transportation, access to services and health care, and others - it's a good time to reflect on how all of these "pieces" might come together in our community planning process. Fortunately, we have much good work from national organizations and other communities to draw upon!

    A Report to the Nation on Livable Communities: Creating Environments for Successful Aging, AARP, May, 2005.
    This 108-page report seeks to expand community planning goals beyond addressing economic growth, sprawl and the allocation of scarce resources. Read more...

    Aging and Smart Growth: Building Aging- Sensitive Communities by Deborah Howe in collaboration with the Funders' Network for Smart Growth and Livable Communities and Grantmakers in Aging, December 2001.
    This 16-page paper is one of a series of reports developed to translate the impact of suburban sprawl and urban disinvestment on issues of importance to American communities and to suggest opportunities for progress that would be created by smarter growth policies and practices. It discusses environmental obstacles to elders' ability to age in place and remain active and engaged in their communities. Read more...

    Aging in Place: Coordinating Housing and Health Care Provision for America's Growing Elderly Population by Kathryn Lawler, Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University and Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation, October 2001.
    This 64-page report provides an in-depth analysis of the current situation for older Americans in terms of housing and health care: "Health concerns can create or compound the problems of an aging housing stock," the report points out, "and housing concerns can create or compound the health problems for aging individuals." Read more...

    Boomer News

    Addressing Labor Force Issues as Boomers Retire
    "With the impending retirement of the baby boom generation, employers face the loss of many experienced workers and possibly skill gaps in certain occupations," according to Barbara D. Bovbjerg, U.S. Director of Education, Workforce and Income Security, in her statement to the Special Committee on Aging of the U.S. Senate on April 27, 2005. Labor force growth, a major driver of economic growth, is projected to slow from 1.6 percent today to 0.3 percent by 2020, according to Social Security Administration projections. Read more...

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