In 2013 Innovations in Aging and Peak Vista Community Health Centers sought to identify what is working and what is not working in the community related to health and “aging in place,” funded by the Colorado Trust’s Convening for Colorado. This effort was called the Convening to Support Aging in Place for the Pikes Peak Region. In doing so, IIAC reached out to individuals and organizations that had been connected to its earlier gatherings and new partners to add a deeper understanding of the challenges. The convening participants were asked to provide feedback on factors affecting the capacity to age in place and to recommend action steps that could be taken collaboratively to address these factors. Over 100 stakeholders participated in the convening process.
The results of the convening validated the quantitative data that both the 2013 Quality of Life Indicators report and the 2011 Aging in El Paso County study had brought forward. By reengaging the community through bringing together senior stakeholders and service providers, Innovations in Aging has initiated the networking of advocates focused on the critical needs of older adults. The project called attention to issues central to the health and well-being of older adults in the Pikes Peak region, thus setting the stage to build a network of health equity advocates. The convening identified recommendations for the community to address to support aging in place and to improve access to health care for older adults, specifically mental health care for older adults.