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Self Management Assessment and Resource Tool (S.M.A.R.T.)

EPA National Community Recognition Program - Question 8

Our community has established interagency committees, task forces, or other community partnerships with local aging organizations, service providers, and agencies to coordinate activities and programs with smart growth and active aging/physical activity components and work with community planners.


Organizations that tackle the problem of sedentary lifestyles must consider the many factors that influence older adults’ lives. Therefore, organizations will need to engage multiple levels of community infrastructure and expand their level of social and environmental influence. An integrated and collaborative approach will involve individuals and organizations in health care, social services, transportation, parks and recreation, exercise and fitness, senior living facilities, community planning, and other diverse areas of professional expertise.

Some of the challenges of initiating and maintaining a community partnership, task force, or committee will be enlisting volunteers or professionals who will commit to the task long-term, keeping committee members informed and updated, keeping the group motivated, and helping team members work cooperatively for the sake of the common goals.

Getting Started

Start with a list of potential individuals and organizations that could join the committee. Consider taking advantage of local partnerships that have already been established. If the goal is to use as many community resources as possible, then group membership should be open to anyone who has an interest in the group’s goals. Be sure to include community citizens on the roster. Decide if the group will charge a fee for membership to cover the coalition’s costs, and what role each member will play and how tasks will be assigned or distributed.

Internet Resources on Building Community Partnerships

Community Partnerships for Older Adults
http://www.partnershipsforolderadults.org/  Link to EPA's External Link Disclaimer

New York State Department of Health
Engaging Partners
http://www.health.state.ny.us/nysdoh/chac/partners2.htm Link to EPA's External Link Disclaimer

University of Kansas Community Toolbox
Creating and Maintaining Coalitions and Partnerships
http://ctb.ku.edu/en/dothework/tools_tk_1.htm Link to EPA's External Link Disclaimer

Examples of Effective Partnerships

Greater Lafayette Coalition for Living Well After 50
(Example of community coalition)
http://www.livingwellafter50.org/ Link to EPA's External Link Disclaimer

Partnering to Promote Healthy Aging: Creative Best Practice Community Partnerships
http://www.healthyagingprograms.org/content.asp?sectionid=31&ElementID=160  Link to EPA's External Link Disclaimer

Contact the Aging Web editor to ask a question, provide feedback, or report a problem.

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