HALIFAX – Business, non-profit, academic and public sector leaders wrapped two days of discussions in Halifax on Friday, about how seniors can live more independently, actively and contribute to, and benefit from, the province's silver economy.
"Everyone has to recognize the demographic realities of our aging population, and the summit provides an opportunity to view aging from a positive standpoint," said keynote speaker Michelle Ray. "Most importantly, Nova Scotia recognizes the contribution seniors make within our communities, and the advantage of using their wealth of wisdom and experience."
The province today announced at the summit its continued commitment to the Positive Aging Fund and the Age Friendly Communities Grant programs. The funds support priorities identified at the summit, including better networks among seniors and groups that work with them, and services that support their continued contributions in their communities.
"Seniors are a powerful resource, and these grants help our communities make the most of their experience and abilities," said Seniors Minister Denise Peterson-Rafuse. "Making sure seniors have options to contribute in meaningful ways to the areas where they live remains a top priority for the province."
Municipalities can apply for Age Friendly Communities Grants of up to $5,000 to plan and develop structures or services that are more accessible and inclusive of seniors.
Non-profit community organizations can apply for Positive Aging Fund grants of up to $10,000 for projects that improve the health and well-being of seniors, and encourage them to participate.
"This grant gave our organization the opportunity to bring seniors, students and Centre of Geographic Sciences staff together to create an online community map," said The Age Advantage executive director Heather LeBlanc. "Everyone benefitted, seniors received new skills and students received skills and practical experience working on the mapping project.
The total amount of these grants is up to $390,000.
Applications must be received by Sept. 12.
Summit participants said they found it valuable for their work and responsibilities.
"We are working on a project designed specifically around the changing needs of our seniors population, and to have so many resources in one place at the summit is key to addressing the diverse needs of our seniors population," said Patterson Home Sales general manager Duncan Cann. "No longer is it a matter of discussion, it's a matter of urgency, and everyone needs to take action."
For more information on the grants, including application kits, call 1-800-670-0065 or visit www.gov.ns.ca/seniors/positive_aging_fund.asp and http://novascotia.ca/seniors/age_friendly_program.asp .