Healthy Aging

Healthy Aging Resources for Older Adults with Vision Loss, Families, Caregivers, and Providers:

Key MABVI links:

Image of a bland woman being guided down a hallway. Text: Your Role In Adjustment to Vision Loss

Accessibility Awareness Information & Trainings:

Your Role in Adjustment to Vision Loss is approximately a 45-minute video module geared toward family and caregivers.

Please share your feedback on the module with our brief survey HERE.

Other Links:

The Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs (EOEA), in partnership with Point32Health Foundation and the Massachusetts Healthy Aging Collaborative (MHAC), released a podcast series on age- and dementia-friendly innovations across the Commonwealth.

The podcast series, ReiMAgine Aging, tells the story of the age- and dementia-friendly movement taking place in Massachusetts. The series highlights local efforts that make the Commonwealth a great place to grow up and grow older together, including updating infrastructure, promoting volunteer and employment opportunities, providing access to culturally relevant food, expanding affordable supportive housing, increasing transportation options, supporting caregivers, and improving digital access.

The podcast highlights voices from statewide and community leaders, older adults, and non-profits through six compelling stories:

MABVI’s Healthy Aging & Age-Friendly Overview

Capitalizing on our deep experience working with older adults, MABVI a group of people facing the camera Woman in the middle has a white canelaunched an initiative in 2019 to help improve and build systems that support healthy aging, thanks to 3-year seed funding from Tufts Health Plan Foundation (now Point32 Health Foundation). MABVI aims to integrate low vision awareness and accessibility into city and statewide Age-Friendly efforts. We also aim to ensure equitable information access and inclusion of older adults with visual disabilities. MABVI is proud to be part of a network of project partners working to make Massachusetts an exemplar of an Age-Friendly and accessible state.

MABVI works in dozens of cities and towns throughout the state and brings decades of experience working with older adults who are blind or have low vision, a growing demographic. Our robust, integrated healthy aging model of vision rehabilitation addresses the whole person, not just their vision impairment. Disability justice and accessibility are at the heart of our work; which has relevance for all older adults.

Through this project, we aim to share our expertise with and learn from the larger age-friendly community by working collaboratively to meet the needs identified by all seniors and increase access to healthy aging resources. MABVI has relationships with many of the key connectors within the Age-Friendly community, including MA AARP, MA Executive Office of Elder Affairs, MA Councils on Aging, and MA Healthy Aging Collaborative (we serve on the Executive Committee of the latter).

MABVI leadership has participated in Age-Friendly efforts in Boston, Framingham, New Bedford, Springfield, and Worcester to strengthen city office and provider capacity to serve older adults with visual disabilities. Examples An accecss tech employee showing a participant how to use an iPadinclude:

  • Addressing accessibility barriers by offering cultural and accessibility staff training
  • Improving print and digital accessibility including technical assistance on digital accessibility
  • Expanding awareness of and embedding vision rehabilitation, accessibility resources, and other disability access issues into the fabric of Age-Friendly planning

MABVI is also learning from each city’s respective efforts, thus enhancing our work across the state, building our internal capacity to provide technical assistance in the age-friendly sector, with a focus on digital accessibility. MABVI aims to increase access to all of its services, but especially to expand our Access/Assistive Technology Training Program for older adults with visual disabilities.

The aspirational long-term goal of this project envisions that Massachusetts will embrace equitable information access and inclusion of older adults with blindness or low vision into all programs and services.

MABVI’s age-friendly work was guided, in part, by the outcomes of MABVI’s 2016 Solutions in Sight Summit. We brought together over 200 leaders, innovators, and bold thinkers to tackle these issues and propose forward-thinking solutions as we face the reality of an aging baby boomer population and an increase in age-related vision loss. Read more about the summit and our findings here. 

MABVI’s Executive Director, Sassy Outwater-Wright speaks about age-friendly sites with the Brookline Interactive Group

We would like to thank our most recent funding partners who have made this work possible:

* Grant award supports both the general MABVI program and our health aging/Age-Friendly work.

Many key agencies and organizations are now dedicated to Age-Friendly Massachusetts. Some of these entities are:

National Council on Aging’s Resources and Support for Older Adults Living Alone: A Comprehensive Guide

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