8 DOMAINS OF LIVABILITY: An age-friendly community examines its physical, social, and economic frame-works and makes needed changes that promote independence and a high quality of life for its citizens as they age. In this type of community citizens are able to remain in their own home or community even though there may be significant changes in their health and economic condition.
The availability and quality of certain community features impact the well-being of older adults. Developed by the World Health Organization, the 8 Domains of Livabilty framework is used by many of the towns, cities and counties in the AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities to organize and prioritize their work to become more livable for both older residents and people of all ages. While many communities tackle all eight domains at once, others choose to focus on select domains.
The World Health Organization has created a list of 8 Domains of Livability to assess essential age-friendly characteristics of a city:
Domain 1 – Outdoor Spaces and Buildings
Domain 2 – Transportation
Domain 3 – Housing
Domain 4 – Social Participation
Domain 5 – Respect and Social Inclusion
Domain 6 – Civic Participation and Employment
Domain 7 – Communication and Information
Domain 8 – Community and Health Services
The Age-Friendly Community program requires Northfield to create a three-year plan of action for the community based on findings from a survey, community outreach and continuing assessment. We are in the Planning phase where we develop an Action Plan and conduct a survey. Upon approval of the action plan, the community will begin implementation. After the plan has been in place for five years, a progress report will be submitted to the AARP Network. Evaluation of the needs of the city of Northfield will be ongoing, involving residents of all ages to identify new priorities as the plan progresses.
Making improvements in these areas will not only benefit our seniors, but the entire community. The city of Northfield is dedicated to improving the lives of all citizens so they can be prepared for future needs, and enjoy aging in their homes throughout their lives.