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Presenation to Virginia Governor's Conference

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Presentation to VA gov's conference

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Presenation to Virginia Governor's Conference

  1. 1. A SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITY FOR PERSONS OF ALL AGES GORDON WALKER ARE YOU INVOLVED WITH LOCAL GOVERNMENT, A REGIONAL PLANNING ORGANIZATION, A NON-PROFIT OR FOR PROFIT SERVICE PROVIDER? ARE YOU AN ADMINISTRATOR, AN ADVOCATE, A BOARD MEMBER, A PLANNER OR PRACTITIONER? IF SO. YOU ARE LIKELY ON THE FRONT LINE, RESPONDING TO A SOCIETY THAT IS AGING AND GROWING MORE DIVERSE. EITHER BECAUSE OF YOUR ORGANIZATION’S MISSION OR DUE TO DEMOGRAPHIC IMPERATIVES, HOW YOU MAKE DECISIONS AND USE YOUR COMMUNITY’S RESOURCES WILL GO A LONG WAY TOWARD DETERMINING THE QUALITY OF LIFE FOR TODAY’S OLDER ADULTS AS WELL AS THE LEGACY THAT ELDERS LEAVE ACROSS THE LIFE SPAN, FOR GENERATIONS TO COME. TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE, POSITIVE INVESTMENTS AND OUTCOMES WILL OCCUR MORE LIKELY WHEN COMMUNITY PLANNING ANSWERS TO SUCH SOCIETAL ALARM BELLS AS: 1) EXPECTED AGE GROUP RESOURCE COMPETITION DUE TO DEMOGRAPHIC SHIFTS 2) ANXIETY ABOUT CUTS AND CONSTRAINTS ON GROWTH IN HEALTH AND SOCIAL PROGRAMS AND BENEFITS 3) LIMITS ON NATURAL RESOURCES IN AN INCREASINGLY CHANGING ENVIRONMENT 4) DECISION MAKERS PRESSING NEEDS FOR THE MOST EFFECTIVE STRATEGIES DURING AN ERA OF FISCAL PRESSURES, AND 5) THE EVOLVING DEFINITION OF FAMILY , FRAYED SOCIAL BONDS AND CULTURAL DISRUPTIONS FROM A MORE DIVERSE AND MOBILE SOCIETY AT JUST PARTNERS INC , OUR INSTITUTES ON RACE MATTERS AND AGING MATTERS, START WITH A SIMPLE PREMISE –THE SOCIAL , HEALTH AND FINANCIAL ISSUES RAISED BY AN AGING AND MORE DIVERSE POPULATION NEED NOT BE SEEN AS PROBLEMS TO BE SOLVED. INSTEAD, WE CAN VIEW THE CAUSES AND CONSEQUENCES OF CHANGE AS OPPORTUNITIES TO MOVE FORWARD ON A PURPOSEABLE , COMMON ASPIRATION- A VIABLE FUTURE FOR ALL AGES. FROM THIS POINT OF VIEW, OLDER GENERATIONS ARE RESOURCES FOR THEIR FAMILIES, COMMUNITIES PLUS POTENTIAL ALLIES ON ISSUES OF CONCERN FOR ALL GENERATIONS. IN A VIABLE FUTURE , WE DO NOT NEED COMMON AGE OR COMMON RACE TO FIND COMMON GROUND . PERSONS OF ALL AGES, RACES AND ETHNIC GROUPS LEARN TO WORK TOGETHER FOR THE GREATER GOOD- TO MAXIMIZE THE VALUE OF OUR HUMAN, FINANCIAL AND NATURAL RESOURCES. PLANNING FOR A LIVABLE COMMUNITY FOR ALL AGES IS BEST SERVED BY A FOCUS ON SUSTAINABILITY, INTERDEPENDENCE AND INCLUSIVITY, THUS PROVIDING IDEAS AND STRATEGIES FOR
  2. 2. CREATING A VIABLE FUTURE FOR EVERYONE. BY APPLYING THIS INTERGENERATIONAL LENS FOR VIEWING PRAGMATIC PLANNING AND POLICY MAKING , A FRAMEWORK IS CONSTRUTED THAT WILL: 1) APPROACH CROSS SECTOR SOLUTIONS TO AGING ISSUES WITH OTHER GENERATIONS IN MIND 2) PROMOTE COORDINATED EFFORTS ACROSS PUBLIC AND PRIVATE ORGANIZATIONS DOING AGE WAVE PLANS 3) USE AVAILABLE BUDGETS FOR AGING IN WAYS THAT CAN ALSO ADDRESS OTHER COMMUNITY ISSUES 4) ADVANCE WAYS TO DIVERSIFY REVENUE SOURCES THAT GAIN SUSTAINABLE INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL SUPPORT FROM A BROAD RANGE OF ALLIES AND STAKEHOLDERS 5) CREATE HUMAN, SOCIAL AND POLITICAL CAPITAL THAT STRENGTHEN ENDURING COMMUNITY LIVABILITY 6) DEVELOP INTIATIVES THAT PROTECT AND PRESERVE THE ENVIRONMENT , FOR PRESENT AND FUTURE GENERATIONS, AND 7) ENSURE RESIDENTS OF ALL AGES AND CULTURES WILL HAVE A TANGIBLE SENSE OF CONNECTION TO THEIR COMMUNITY BY HAVING EQUAL OPPORTUNITY TO PARTICIPATE ACTIVELY IN THE CIVIC LIFE THAT SHAPES THEIR COMMUNITY’S FUTURE WITH ITS INITIAL USE IN CHARLOTTESVILLE IN 2003, AND ITS CONTINUING APPLICATION IN MORE THAN 20 OTHER COMMUNITIES , JUST PARTNER’S HAS TRACKED THE DEPLOYMENT OF IT’S VIABLE FUTURE TOOLKIT. FINDINGS AND CONCLUSIONS HAVE PRODUCED A SET OF “LESSONS LEARNED” ALONG THE WAY TO A LIVABLE AND SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITY FOR ALL AGES. THESE ARE: 1) IT TAKES ONE ORGANIZATION TO GET THINGS STARTED- BUT MANY TO REALIZE A VISION. HERETOFORE, COMPETING OR DISINTERESTED GROUPS CAN FIND PLENTY OF COMMON GROUND THAT SPEAKS TO A BROAD RANGE OF STAKEHOLDERS. THUS FORMING NEW AND EFFECTIVE COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS 2) AN ALL INCLUSIVE COMMUNITY INTIATIVE FOR ALL AGES OPENS UP MORE RESOURCES FROM FUNDERS , THEY ARE MORE LIKELY TO SAY YES TO A COALITION OF ORGANIZATIONS WITH A SHARED PURPOSE 3) EARLY AGREEMENT ON CORE UNDERLYING VALUES , AND ADOPTION OF A CONSENSUS BUILDING FRAMEWORK FOR ACTION, HELPS TO KEEP POTENTIAL CONFLICTS AT BAY. SUCH PRINCIPLES INCLUDE , A RECOGNITION THAT SINGLE INTERVENTIONS CAN PROVIDE MULTIPLE SOLUTIONS; INTERVENTIONS WILL HAVE AN EYE ON THE FUTURE; MULTI- GENERATIONAL FAMILIES ARE A KEY BUILDING BLOCK FOR A BROADER VISION OF HOPE ; AND THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING INTENTIONAL AND SYSTEMATIC ABOUT MEASURING RESULTS
  3. 3. 4)SIGNALLING , EARLY ON, A WILLINGNESS TO CHANGE TRADITIONAL POLICY AND PRACTICE WILL LEAD TO POSITIVE MISSION RESULTS . FOR EXAMPLE, TOO OFTEN, REQUESTS FOR PROPOSALS (RFPs) FROM GOVERNMENTS AT ALL LEVELS TARGET ONLY ONE POPULTION OR AGE GROUP, EVEN THOUGH COMMON INTERGENERATIONAL ISSUES EXIST. THIS PRACTICE, RE-ENFORCES FUNDING SILOS AND FOSTERS AGE SEGREGATION. ALTERING PARAMETERS TO FUNDING, CAN UNLEASH OPPORTUNITIES TO THINK IN NEW AND INCLUSIVE WAYS TO RESPOND TO COMMUNITY CONCERNS. 5) CHANGE, SHOULD BE NURTURED INTERNALLY ,NOT JUST EXTERNALLY. IT IS IMPORTANT TO GAIN THE SUPPORT OF BOARDS OF DIRECTORS, ELECTED OFFICIALS , BUSINESS OWNERS AND SENIOR MANAGEMENT; TO INSERT INTERGENERATIONAL, SUSTAINABLE AND INCLUSIVE LANGUAGE IN STRATEGIC AND COMPREHENSIVE PLANS, ON WEBSITES AND WITHIN STATEMENTS OF PRINCIPLES AND TO “CROSSWALK” THE AGE FRIENDLY PLAN ACROSS OTHER PLANS , SUCH AS THOSE ON HOUSING, LAND USE , PUBLIC SAFELY AND TRANSPORTATION 6) CELEBRATING SUCCESS, ALONG THE WAY, SETS THE STAGE FOR EVEN GREATER SUCCESS LONG TERM. RECONIZING ACCOMPLSHMENTS REGULARLY WILL PORTRAY A POSITIVE PUBLIC IMAGE, WILL BRING MORE RESOURCES INTO PLAY AND WILL HELP BALANCE A BIG VISION WITH THE SPECIFIC STEPS TO GET THERE. AND LASTLY, 7)COMMUNITIES CAN BENEFIT FROM HAVING AN INITIAL AND EXPEDIENT MEANS TO EVALUATE READINESS AND TO DO AND MEASURE LIVABLE COMMUNITY PLANNING, POLICY AND PRACTICE. ICMA , THE INTERNATIONAL CITY AND COUNTY MANAGERS ASSOCIATION, AND THE AGE MATTERS INSTITUTE OF JUST PARTNERS ,ARE WORKING TOGETHER TO DEVELOP A TWO PART “READINESS SCORECARD” TO HELP LOCAL GOVERNMENTS ASSESS, IN A COST EFFECTIVE MANNER ,THEIR CAPACITY TO DO INCLUSIVE AND COMPREHENSIVE AGE WAVE PLANNING . COMPLETING PART A OF THE SCORECARD, CAN BENEFIT ALL LOCAL COMMUNITY LEADERS, EVEN THOSE THAT HAVE NOT HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO BEGIN ANY AGE WAVE PLANNING. ITS SCORE WILL INDICATE IF A COMMUNITY IS READY TO ADDRESS ISSUES OF THE AGING POPULATION WITH A MULTI-GENERATIONAL, RACIALLY INCLUSIVE PERSPECTIVE . PART B’S ADMINISTRATION, WILL TALLY THE ESSENTIAL CHARACTERISTICS COMMONLY FOUND IN AN AGE FRIENDLY, FOR ALL GENERATIONS, COMMUNITY . COMPLETING THIS CHECKLIST, WILL NOT ONLY PROVIDE A REPORT ON CURRENT STATUS BUT ITS USE WILL BE A LEARNING PROCESS THAT PROMOTES A PARTNERSHIP, AMONG GOVERNMENT AND THE PRIVATE SECTOR . IN TANDEM BOTH SECTORS CAN SELF -ASSESS KEY COMMUNITY BUILDING COMPONENTS TO DETERMINE WHERE THE COMMUNITY ALREADY ACCOMMODATE S THE NEEDS AND EXPECTATIONS OF ITS OLDER RESIDENTS AND WHERE THEY SHOULD INVEST CAPACITY BUILDING RESOURCES INTENDED TO IMPROVE INTERGENERATIONAL OUTCOMES. THE SCORECARD’S PART B CAN ALSO BE USED, PERIODICALLY, AS A MECHANISM TO MEASURE PROGRESS AND ACCOMPLISHMENTS TOWARD A MORE INCLUSIVE , LIVABLE COMMUNITY. IT HAS BECOME CLEAR TO ICMA AND JPI, THAT ECONOMIC CONDITIONS AND OTHER PRESSING PRIORITIES MAY MAKE IT FINANCIALLY DIFFICULT FOR MANY COMMUNITIES TO UNDERTAKE THE IN DEPTH DATA GATHERING AND ANALYSIS REQUIRED TO DESIGN A COMPREHENSIVE STRATEGIC PLAN ON AGING. THEREFORE , WE ARE TEAMING UP TO CREATE A WORD BASED TEMPLATE ,CALLED A
  4. 4. STRATEGIC PLAN ON COMMAND (SPOC) , AS A HELPFUL WAY FOR ADDRESSING SIMULTANEOULSY THE LOCAL FISCAL CONSTRAINTS AND THE GEOGRAPHIC LIMITS OF ICMA AND JPI STAFF RESOURCE CAPACITY . BY TAPPING INTO THE COMMUNITY NURTURING INGREDIENTS OF THE VIABLE FUTURES TOOLKIT AND THE STRATEGIC PLANS WE HAVE PRODUCED TO DATE, WE HAVE GENERATED THE “RAW MATERIALS” NECESSARY FOR THE TEMPLATE TO BE A UNIVERSAL BLUEPRINT THAT CAN ALSO BE LOCALLY CUTOMIZED. THE “SPOC” WILL OFFER A GUIDED “HOW TO” PLATFORM FROM WHICH A COMMUNITY CAN FILL IN ITS SPECIFIC LOCAL DATA , THEN CONSIDER A RANGE OF BEST PRACTICE OPTIONS BASED ON THOSE LOCAL METRICS. THE PACKAGE OFFERED WITH THE STRATEGIC PLAN ON COMMAND WOULD INCLUDE A WRITTEN REVIEW BY A MEMBER OF OUR CONSULTANT TEAM , OF THE DRAFT PLAN DEVELOPED BY THE USER, ALONG WITH COACHING ASSISTANCE FOCUSED ON LOCAL IMPLEMENTATION. AS IS TRUE ALREADY WITH THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE SCORECARDS, ICMA AND JPI EXPECT TO ENTICE OTHER LEADERS IN LIVABLE COMMUNITY PLANNING TO JOIN US AS PARTNERS IN THE INNOVATION AND USE OF SPOC. VARYING PATHS ENSUE TOWARD A SUSTAINABLE AND INCLUSIVE PLAN, ONE BENEFICIAL AND MEANINGFUL TO ALL RACES AND AGES. YET I BELIEVE THERE IS ONE COMMON THREAD, A RECOGNITION THAT THE BEST WORK IS DONE BY COORDINATED AND COLLECTIVE ACTION THAT BEGINS WITH AN ACKNOWLEDGEMENT AND ACCEPTANCE THAT AN AGING AND DIVERSE POPULATION ARE A NATURAL GROWING RESOURCE THAT CAN PROSPER ALL GENERATIONS.

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