Inaugural aging summit comes to Surrey this week

The average age of citizens in Surrey is up a year and a half since 2011, according to Census data

As baby boomers move into retirement, the average age of citizens across British Columbia is trending up.

2016 Census data showed that the average age of people in Surrey was 39 years old. That’s up a year and a half from 2011 when the average age in Surrey was 37 and a half years old.

With an aging population on the horizon, a number of organizations are hosting the inaugural Provincial Summit on Aging this week in Surrey.

On Nov. 2nd and 3rd, the City of Surrey is partnering with a number of organizations to host an event based on raising the profile and increasing the amount of community-based senior services.

By doing this, organizers of the event hope to help seniors promote their health while improving their independence, resilience and social connectedness.

Surrey city councilor Barbara Steele is a long-time advocate for seniors in Surrey, and she speaks highly of the work that the City of Surrey is doing with seniors.

“We have a good reputation for what we’re doing with seniors in Surrey,” said Steele. “We’re out there on a weekly basis doing everything from banking education to exercise programs.”

“We’re multi-faceted throughout the whole city.”

Steele mentioned a number of different programs that the city is hosting for seniors in the community. These include programs on housing, computer information classes. library services, fire services, and Translink programs to get seniors accustomed to transit.

“We are trying to eliminate the isolated senior who can’t get out or doesn’t want to get out,” she said.

By hosting the Provincial Summit of Aging, Steele wants to make contact with seniors in the city and highlight the wealth of programs that the city offers.

“We’re looking to make sure that everybody gets the information their looking for, and that they make contacts to stay in touch with people who can help them.

Steele says that seniors who are looking for different senior programs can visit the City of Surrey website, or they can email HBSteele@Surrey.ca

The United Way of the Lower Mainland, United Way’s Better at Home Program, Raising the Profile Project, B.C. Ministry of Health, the Active Aging Research Team from the Centre for Hip Health and Mobility at the University of British Columbia, and the B.C. Recreation and Parks Association are all partnering with the City of Surrey to host the event.

The sold-out event will take place at Surrey City Hall Atrium and Council Chambers, with the closing address coming from B.C. Seniors Advocate Isobel Mackenzie at 3:00 p.m.


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