Shaking up the Status Quo

Next Avenue, public media’s first and only national service for America’s booming 50+ population*, has begun a year-long project on aging well, planning for the changes that aging brings and shaping how society thinks about aging. The most recent article – A New Twist on Planned Senior Communities, by Beth Baker, describes four communities that focus on wellness and quality of life. Not just about old people-croppedHer first featured community is Healthy Living Community, a town-within-a-town in Liberty, MO, that will focus on wellness and intergenerational living. Leading the development is Steve Shields, a pioneer in transformative eldercare and CEO of Action Pact. The community springs from a collaboration between Action Pact and Liberty Hospital and Healthy Living Centers of America. In this community, town life will center around a “Healthy Living Center” complex that includes 6,500 square feet of: state-of-the-art exercise space, a yoga studio, a spinning room and four swimming pools as well as a restaurant, bistro, theater and childcare center – all open to the broader Liberty community. Baker emphasizes thatAbout all-cropped a core element of this community will be households, rather than traditional assisted living or nursing homes — for those who need long-term care services. As the community continues to develop, there will be a variety of housing types. The first phase will open in 2017. Read the full article here.

Beth Baker, a long-time freelance writer whose work has appeared in the Washington Post, AARP Bulletin, Washingtonian, and Ms. Magazine, is the features editor of BioScience, the journal of the American Institute of Biological Sciences. Ms. Baker is also the author of Old Age in a New Age: The Promise of Transformative Nursing Homes and With a Little Help from Our Friends, Creating Community as We Grow Older — both available from Action Pact’s webstore.

Of further interest:  Action Pact recently offered webinars on both the Healthy Living Community, with Steve Shields as guest and With a Little Help from Our Friends, Creating Community as We Grow Older featuring Beth Baker as the guest.  If you would like to watch these shows, they are also available in the webstore.

Twin Cities Public Television (tpt) in St. Paul, Minn. produces Next Avenue for the PBS system and 84 PBS stations are local affiliate partners.