Our city’s vibrant culture and history has endless opportunities to be enriched even further in coming years. We are a community that is known for collaboration, ingenuity and innovative solutions. As our residents live longer and healthier lives, opportunities are abundant to integrate more fully the knowledge, wisdom and talents of older adults. Bexar County is expected to nearly double its population of older adults over the next 20 years, with similar growth rates through the year 2050. San Antonio is a city that is culturally primed to lead the nation to embrace meaningful changes that improve the quality of life for all generations, by inclusively supporting solutions to ensure we can all thrive as we age.
Successful Aging and Living in San Antonio (SALSA) was created by the San Antonio Area Foundation to increase leadership, collaboration and funding to ensure older adults have access to necessary services, information and support systems.
Starting with community-based research, strategic planning and collaboration, SALSA's mission is to transform our community by advancing practices and policies that improve the quality of life of vulnerable older adults in Bexar County.
SALSA has aligned their work to that of the World Health Organization’s Eight Domains of Livability. These domains have also been adopted by AARP and the City of San Antonio, creating a collaborative focus on aging successfully.
Collective impact brings people together, in a structured way, to achieve social change.
SALSA is a collective impact initiative. “Collective impact” describes an intentional way of working together and sharing information for the purpose of solving a complex problem. Proponents of collective impact believe that the approach is more likely to solve complex problems than if a single nonprofit were to approach the same problem(s) on its own.
SALSA participants are a combination of individuals and organizations, with representatives from the business community, local government and the social sector. SALSA partners are working on issues of housing, transportation, socialization, engagement, health, and caregiver support.
The SALSA Journey
The SALSA Steering Committee is a group comprised of cross-sector community partners representative of the relevant ecosystem that provides strategic direction for the Collective Impact initiative and champions its work.
Working Groups are the heartbeat of the SALSA collective impact: where action occurs and goals are brought to life. SALSA Partners are working on issues of housing, transportation, socialization, engagement, health, and caregiver support.
The SALSA workgroups are:
The SALSA Workgroups have generated reports and resources to better tell the story of Aging in San Antonio.
The Transportation Workgroup believes that older adults in all parts of the county should have equitable access to a variety of affordable, accessible, spontaneous and appropriate transportation options that allow them to go where they want, when they want.
Transportation for Older Adults: Summary of Issues, Actors, and Solutions Fall 2020
The Workgroup commissioned a white paper to highlight the challenges facing the existing transportation system for older adults and people with disabilities, and to propose a solution to improve service coordination, accessibility, and data collection.
This SALSA Workgroup works towards a vision where neighborhoods and housing across Bexar County are safe, affordable and accessible for older adults, at all income and abilities levels resulting in successfully aging in place.
Summary of Barriers and Solutions to Senior Housing
The Housing Workgroup released its Barriers and Solutions report at a community meeting in September of 2019. This report summarizes the barriers that impact housing for older adults in San Antonio and proposed solutions, as identified in prior studies and community planning initiatives. The contents summarize the work of many organizations and individuals over many years. The report is divided into two sections. The first section highlights the barriers specific to housing for older adults. The second section of this report highlights barriers to housing more generally, including but not limited to housing for older adults.
The Caregiver and Socialization Workgroup wants to ensure older adults and their caregivers are aware of and have access to available resources in the community. The Workgroup members focus on the best ways to share data, provide information, and promote resources. They come together and contribute their time, expertise, passions, and lived experiences to help develop and implement strategies to contribute to the San Antonio community where older adults are respected, thrive and enjoy connected lives.
Family Caregiver Toolkit
With input from family caregivers the Caregiver and Socialization Workgroup created a dynamic toolkit for caregivers. This toolkit offers resources to those spouses, family, and significant others who provide care for their loved ones. The success of most care plans—from hospital discharge to everyday care in the home—often rests on the shoulders of the family caregiver. We hope this toolkit assists new or experienced home-based caregivers to understand their role and provides information about essential support for the challenge’s caregivers may face.
The Reframing Aging Initiative is a long-term social endeavor designed to improve the public’s understanding of what aging means and the many ways that older people contribute to society. Ultimately, this greater understanding will counter ageism and guide our community’s approach to ensuring supportive policies and programs for us all as we move through the life course.
There's a better way to talk about older people. ReFraming Aging can help.
This new approach, developed by the renowned FrameWorks Institute and based on social science research techniques, can help you change the conversation, be more persuasive, and influence public understanding to create a more just, inclusive, and age-friendly society.
San Antonio Organizations Committed to the Reframing Aging Initiative:
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