Newry, Mourne and Down District Council Hosts Prestigious Age Friendly Conference
On Wednesday 11 November 2015, Newry, Mourne and Down District Council along with a wide range of agencies hosted a conference ‘Celebrating Age Friendliness’. Over 200 delegates were in attendance to share the experience of the achievements that the Age Friendly Strategy has achieved on its journey since it was launched in 2014.
Newry, Mourne and Down District Council Chairperson, Councillor Naomi Bailie welcomed MLA’s, Councillors, citizens along with representatives from various age organisations and groups including statutory, voluntary organisations and agencies.
Speaking at the conference she said, “This event highlights the approach taken by the Council in partnership with a range of agencies and voluntary and statutory organisations to making our district Age Friendly and how this is progressing. Through working together on this initiative all the partners have demonstrated their commitment to making our district a really great place in which to grow older, that is supportive, valuing and enabling for older people. At a time when the demographics of our population are changing and people are living longer it is important that we acknowledge the wealth of experience and benefits that our older citizens bring to our communities and society as we strive to work together through imaginative and cost effective partnerships to improve the health, wellbeing and quality of life for them. I commend all the members of the Age Friendly Strategic Alliance who are working together to achieve this worthy aim.”
Dr Alan Hatton-Yeo, MBE, who was the guest speaker at the Conference said, “I am delighted to speak at today’s conference, particularly as Ireland has played such a key role in the development of international understanding of Age-Friendly Cities and Communities, not least through the international adoption of the Dublin Declaration. In Wales our collaboration with Irish colleagues has been an important in informing the development of our national Age-Friendly Community Programme.”
The event, which was chaired by Ms Pamela Ballantine, provided an opportunity to demonstrate how the district has been delivering on the Age Friendly Agenda over the past year and how the Strategic Alliance Partnership has been working together in order to enhance the quality of life for older citizens in the area. Delegates also heard about the experiences of age friendly programmes in other areas and an interactive Q&A session gave them the chance to directly engage with the various speakers on the many issues raised. All present found the Conference to be very informative and welcomed the on-going implementation of the Age Friendly Strategy.