Lifelong Montclair Making Communities More Senior Friendly
Katie York, Director of Senior Services at Lifelong Montclair, explains how her organization is working to make communities in New Jersey friendlier for senior citizens.
"We're pleased to be joined by Doctor Katie York, who is director of Senior Services at Lifelong Montclair. How you doing? Good, how are you? I'm doing great. Now since I live in Montclair, by the way you don't have to live in Montclair to care about this subject, you just have to want to live a long and healthy life, what is Lifelong Montclair? Because I live there, does that mean later on, it's gonna be a good place for me to be? I hope so, I hope we're making it a good place now for our current seniors. Lifelong Montclair is an aging in place initiative that started out with funding from the Partners For Health Foundation, and now it's a formal township initiative, so it's part of the Division of Senior Services in the Township of Montclair. Okay, that whole expression "aging in place"? Yes. You gotta, I'll use an academic term, operationalize that concept, would you please? Sure. Yeah, so aging in place is like you said, you allude to a nebulous term, "place" can be defined so many ways, it could be within the home you live, the community you live, we are focusing on aging within our community rather than a home that might not be appropriate for you to age in. But it's really about making sure people can remain safe, happy, and healthy in their community. Example? Like an example of an activity? Well, an activity would be improving people's awareness of support systems that exist in the towns that we've put together, a directory of senior services, we're launching a website so that they can be online, so people can access it either directly or the people who give them trusted information can get them the information they need, so that they know what's available, what services are out there to help them be able to meet that goal of aging in place. And aging in place also, doctor, talks about nutrition, and health, correct? Sure. Yeah, certainly health is an important part of it, so making sure people know about prevention and the services that are available, we're fortunate in Montclair to have two hospitals that serve the region, and a variety of other healthcare providers. So making sure people are connected with those services is always important. Let me ask you, there are all kinds of... excuse me, there are lectures and a whole range of other initiatives, let's put up the website if we could, so people can get more information throughout this segment, if we could do that it'd be great, let me ask you something, overall, and your doctorate is in the field of...? Gerontology. Which is? The study of aging..."