About Age-friendly Peterborough

The Age-friendly Peterborough motto is "together we can."

Statistics show a growing need to support, promote and advocate for healthy aging. "Together we can" make this community an inclusive and thriving location for older adults.

Age-friendly Peterborough Advisory Committee

The Age-friendly Peterborough Advisory Committee was created in June 2017 for two primary purposes:

  1. to advise local governments on issues related to aging; and
  2. to guide the implementation of the Age-friendly Peterborough Community Action Plan.

Age-friendly Peterborough Advisory Committee advises City Council and County Council (through the Joint Services Steering Committee), Curve Lake First Nation Council (through their Health and Family Services Committee), and Hiawatha First Nation Council. Age-friendly Peterborough Advisory Committee is supported by four working groups which are comprised of local organizations, staff, and local volunteers. The structure below collectively represents Age-friendly Peterborough.

Current Age-friendly Peterborough Advisory Committee members

  • Councillor Dave Haacke, City of Peterborough Council Representative
  • Councillor Ron Black, County of Peterborough Council Representative
  • Councillor Arnold Taylor, Curve Lake First Nation Council Representative
  • Councillor Cynthia Gray, Hiawatha First Nation Council Representative
  • Alison Carey, City of Peterborough Community Representative
  • Ruth Snider, County of Peterborough Community Representative
  • Joanne Pine, Curve Lake First Nation Community Representative
  • Hiawatha First Nation Community Representative: Vacant
  • Stephanie Bolton, Staying Mobile Working Group Representative
  • Dawn Berry Merriam, Basic Needs Working Group Representative
  • Nick Stone, Learning and Contributing Working Group Representative
 Age-friendly Peterborough Partners
 Our network includes representatives from:
  • First Nations
  • Academia and researchers
  • Planning
  • Transportation
  • Accessibility
  • Not-for-profit agencies
  • Senior sector businesses
  • Government
  • Health care professionals
  • Senior center and club representatives
  • Communications and marketing specialists
  • Retirement residence and home care providers
  • And most importantly, those with lived experience 

Age-friendly Peterborough Vision

Peterborough is a thriving region that is inclusive, respectful, and accessible to people of all ages and abilities.

Age-friendly Peterborough Values

Alignment Alignment Icon
Meeting the goals of the Age-friendly Plan will require alignment with related community plans. Action will be achieved by integrating the Plan outcomes within existing service-delivery and planning and governing structures.
Collaboration Collaboration icon
Supporting healthy and active aging is everyone’s responsibility. Enhancing quality of life for older adults requires engagement of, and cooperation between older adults, all levels of government, service providers, community-based organizations, and civil society.
Diversity Diversity Icon
No two older adults are the same, and every person experiences the process of aging differently. Diversity of culture, race, gender, sexual orientation, physical and mental ability, and economic circumstance should be recognized and respected in all populations, including older adults.
Equity Equity Icon
Older adults, particularly those who experience vulnerability or marginalization, may require specific supports to access services depending on their circumstances. All older adults should have access to the services they require regardless of income, ability, or geography.
Inclusion Inclusion Icon
To live is to age. Healthy and active aging is a process for everyone. Relationships across generations and across differences strengthen communities and support all residents to live and age well.
Interconnection Interconnection Icon
Creating age-friendly environments requires work across sectors which exist in relation to one another. Changes in one sector may impact access and service requirements in another.
Transparency Transparency Icon
The Age-friendly Peterborough Advisory Committee is committed to ongoing reporting on progress measures and the outcomes of the Age-friendly Plan.

Strategic Directions

Basic Needs

 Age-friendly Peterborough Community Support and Health Services Icon of a blue heart with a plus sign.Community Support and Health Services

 Age-friendly Peterborough housing icon. Housing

Diverse Housing Supply Age-friendly Peterborough housing icon.
Diversifying the housing stock in our region will provide the infrastructure needed to support aging in place.
Appropriate Housing Choices Age-friendly Peterborough housing icon.
Ensuring an array of housing choices can support older adults to select and transition to appropriate housing as needed.
Supports to Age in Place Age-friendly Peterborough housing icon.
Providing a range of supports including home maintenance and in-home care, can help older adults remain in their homes for as long as possible.
Enhanced Support Services for Vulnerable Older Adults Age-friendly Peterborough Community Support and Health Services Icon of a blue heart with a plus sign.
Some older adults, especially those living in poverty, may benefit from specific programs and services to help them as they age.
Diverse Community Support Programs Age-friendly Peterborough Community Support and Health Services Icon of a blue heart with a plus sign.
Community Support Programs that go beyond primary health care recognize and respond to the unique needs of older adults.
Health Care on Time and In Place Age-friendly Peterborough Community Support and Health Services Icon of a blue heart with a plus sign.
Increasing the availability and coordination of health care across the region will enhance the ability of older adults to access appropriate and timely care.

Staying Mobile

Age-friendly Peterborough transportation iconTransportation 

Age-friendly Peterborough outdoor spaces icon. Outdoor Spaces and Buildings

Affordable transportation options   Age-friendly Peterborough transportation icon

Rural transportation options help older adults access services, and take part in social activities, supporting them to remain in their community of choice as they age.

Improved public transit   Age-friendly Peterborough transportation icon

Reliable, affordable, accessible, and convenient public transit systems increase older adults' mobility and ability to travel independently in the community.

A safe, well-maintained road network   Age-friendly Peterborough transportation icon

Well-maintained roads with enhanced safety features can support older adults to travel safely and confidently throughout the region.

A safe, well-maintained, and connected active transportation network   Age-friendly Peterborough transportation icon

Active transportation infrastructure supports people to remain active as they age.

Adequate, accessible parking   Age-friendly Peterborough transportation icon

Accessible parking can enable older adults to complete daily tasks, run errands, and easily access services.

Complete community design Age-friendly Peterborough outdoor spaces icon.

Communities that include a mix of housing, services, and recreation spaces support older adults to remain in their community of choice as they age.

Building Relationships

 Age-friendly Peterborough social participation icon Social Participation 

Age-friendly Peterborough outdoor spaces and building icon. Outdoor Spaces & Buildings

Age-friendly Peterborough respect and social inclusion icon.Respect and Social Inclusion

Vibrant downtown commercial areas Age-friendly Peterborough outdoor spaces and building icon.

Commercial areas that are accessible, vibrant, and welcoming can support older adults to engage in the social, civic, and economic lives of their communities.
Age-friendly parks & community facilities Age-friendly Peterborough outdoor spaces and building icon.
Parks and community facilities that include age-friendly amenities and features can support older adults to remain socially connected and active as they age.

Outreach to isolated older adults Age-friendly Peterborough social participation icon

Older adults may experience periods of social isolation; outreach and engagement programs can support these individuals to re-engage in their communities or mitigate the negative effects of isolation.

Intergenerational programming Age-friendly Peterborough respect and social inclusion icon.

Fostering intergenerational connections can support older adults to build and maintain lasting relationships and dispel myths and misperceptions about aging and older adulthood.

Diverse representations of aging Age-friendly Peterborough respect and social inclusion icon.

Recognizing the diversity of individuals' identities and experiences as they age creates an inclusive environment for older adults of varied cultures, races, genders, sexual orientation, abilities, and economic circumstances.

Age-friendly businesses Age-friendly Peterborough respect and social inclusion icon.

Businesses with accessible features and age-friendly customer service will empower older adults to confidently purchase services and products.

Learning and Contributing

 Age-friendly Peterborough social participation icon Social Participation

 Age-friendly Peterborough civic participation and employment Participation & Employment

Age-friendly Peterborough communication and information icon.Communication and Information

Accessible public meetings and events Age-friendly Peterborough social participation icon

Accessible meetings and events support older adults to remain active and engaged as they age.

Support for volunteerism Age-friendly Peterborough social participation icon

Well-coordinated and well-promoted volunteer opportunities can help older adults identify and engage in roles that align with their skills and interests.

Diverse and flexible employment opportunities Age-friendly Peterborough social participation icon

Flexible employment opportunities support older adults to remain employed in appropriate roles as they age.

Transparent and participatory decision-making Age-friendly Peterborough civic participation and employment

Transparent and participatory decision-making processes empower older adults to contribute their unique perspectives, experiences, and skills to decision-making processes.

Access to information Age-friendly Peterborough civic participation and employment

Making information readily accessible in a variety of formats will help older adults obtain the information they need to remain engaged and informed.

Life-long learning opportunities Age-friendly Peterborough civic participation and employment

Providing education and learning opportunities for older adults allows individuals to continue to learn and grow as they age.

Diverse social and recreation opportunities Age-friendly Peterborough communication and information icon.

Access to a variety of social and recreational opportunities can support older adults to remain socially engaged as they age.

Age-friendly Peterborough Advisory Committee History and Successes

In 2008, the Peterborough Seniors Planning Table was formed to create opportunities for integration and capacity building within the system of services that support seniors and their families. Members were cross-sectoral representatives from senior support service organizations. The Seniors Planning Table was an informal group with City staff involvement and two co-chairs who provided leadership to the 60 members.
In 2014, we recognized the need to have older adults incorporated into the conversation, so the governance was changed, and the group was branded as the Peterborough Council on Aging. Ontario Trillium Foundation funding was received, and a Coordinator was hired to conduct research, community engagement and develop the Community Action Plan.

In 2017, the Community Action Plan was completed, and endorsed by City Council, County Council, all eight Townships, Curve Lake First Nation, and Hiawatha First Nation. The Plan was organized into four goals and 146 actions were proposed.

In 2017, the organization was rebranded as Age-friendly Peterborough and the City of Peterborough agreed to be the lead. The Age-friendly Peterborough Advisory Committee (AFPAC) was approved as a sub-committee to the City/County Joint Services Steering Committee (now the Peterborough Regional Liaison Committee) by the City of Peterborough Council on July 31, 2017 with the mandate of implementing the Age-friendly Peterborough Community Action Plan.

In the same year, a family bequeathed approximately $375,000 to the United Way for projects that support seniors. Thereby, the United Way provided funding for AFP initiatives outlined in the Community Action Plan.


In 2018, the City of Peterborough and the County of Peterborough agreed to create a a full-time Age-friendly Coordinator position to implement the Community Action Plan and focus on aging issues in the community.

In 2018, AFPAC accepted 2 awards: Sustainable Peterborough Partnership Recognition Award and Ontario Age-friendly Community Recognition Award.

In 2019, AFPAC provided input to the City’s Planning and Development Services that applied an age-friendly lens to the draft Official Plan.

In 2020, COVID-19 had a significant impact across the globe.  AFP and other senior sector organizations provided innovative solutions to keep older adults in the greater Peterborough area engaged, promote interaction, and combat isolation.

In 2020, AFPAC submitted a letter to Peterborough area MPs Maryam Monsef and Philip Lawrence, and MPPs David Piccini and Dave Smith to emphasize the need for improvements in our long-term care system.

Trent University and peopleCare Communities are collaborating to improve the lives of local seniors, advance research on aging, and enhance student learning through the creation of a new not-for-profit 224-bed long-term care (LTC) home located on the University’s Symons Campus. Representatives from AFPAC provided input for the university-integrated seniors village. AFP will be involved in the planning process as the project progresses.

At the onset of the pandemic, AFP was instrumental in the senior community by enhancing communication. AFP and Peterborough Public Health co-chaired the Teleconference: Agencies Supporting Older Adults through COVID-19 to provide a forum that enabled information sharing and partnerships to respond to COVID-19 and post-pandemic responses to support seniors.

Starting in 2020, AFP has co-chaired the Eastern Ontario Age-friendly Network.

AFP received Ministry of Seniors and Accessibility Inclusive Community funding to evaluate the AFP Community Action Plan, conduct an internal process review, and facilitate community consultation to prepare AFP for a new strategic plan. The one-year project started in April 2021 and will be completed in March 2022.


Age-friendly Business Strategy

The goal of this strategy is to improve and increase the experiences older adults have with local businesses and organizations. Important factors that help make a business age-friendly include: better customer service, accessibility enhancements, and more employment opportunities.

An Age-friendly Business Guide has been designed to provide insight into the older adult market and to provide practical, no-cost, and low-cost tips to assist businesses in reaching and engaging the growing market of older adults. The Age-friendly Business Task Force is developing a program that includes a workshop, an age-friendly self-assessment tool, and recognition strategy. The objective of the program is to train staff how to engage older adult customers, especially those with dementia and other health issues, and how to make the physical environment safe and comfortable. AFP will publicly recognize businesses who participate in the program and take steps to become more age-friendly. The Age-friendly Business program will resume soon. 

AFP Communication Strategy
The Age-friendly Peterborough Communications Strategy lays the foundation for a strategic approach to communications. Through a consultation process involving members of the Working Groups of AFP, insights were gathered to help shape this Strategy. AFP operates throughout a wide geographic area and speaks to diverse audiences. To ensure these audiences are reached, efforts must be organized and strategic. This Strategy brings together the knowledge and tools needed to connect Age-friendly Peterborough with its stakeholders.
Be Prepared Workbook and Workshops

Age-friendly Peterborough and partners developed a Be Prepared Workbook that prompts older adults to gather information needed in an emergency and prepares them for a change in health or circumstance. The Workbook includes information, checklists, reflective questions, discussion topics with family and friends, and where to go for additional resources. There are five chapters:

  • Emergency Preparedness;
  • Personal Safety Planning;
  • Next Step Housing;
  • Advanced Care Planning; and
  • Final Wishes.


In 2022, AFP received funding from the Ministry of Seniors and Accessibility to develop the Be Prepared program, print the workbooks, and deliver free workshops in the community. From June to November, our facilitators conducted almost 40 workshops and distributed 500 workbooks.


AFP will schedule focus groups in the winter 2023, where we will invite past workshop participants to share their experience completing the workbook, what information they have utilized, and what changes to the project we should consider. We will incorporate their feedback into the second edition of the Be Prepared Workbook. Thank you to United Way Peterborough & District who has generously funded year two of the project and workshops will be scheduled in spring and fall of 2023. Email afpmin@peterborough.ca if you are interested in hosting a workshop.


The PDF of the Be Prepared Workbook is available by request and is posted on the Age-friendly Communities Ontario website. http://sagelink.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/Be-Prepared-Workbook-AFP-2022.pdf The project was highlighted at the Age-friendly Communities Ontario, Inspiring Inclusive Communities in Ontario: Moving age-friendly insights into action conference in 2022. The presentation can be viewed at this link at time 1:18 https://sagelink.ca/inspiring-inclusive-communities-in-ontario/

Health and Housing Navigation Study
The goal of the Study is to improve awareness of and access to housing and health resources now and into the future for our aging population. Age-friendly Peterborough will use these resources to assist local seniors, their care-givers, and families to find the appropriate health services and housing accommodations so they may stay in their homes as long as possible.
Rural Community Transportation - "The Link"
The Township of Selwyn has received a 5-year grant of $1.488 million starting in 2019 from the Ministry of Transportation to implement a rural transportation program that services the Township of Selwyn, Curve Lake First Nation and the City of Peterborough. Community Care Peterborough is also a partner in this program.
Social Isolation to Social Connection: Seniors and their Familial and Formal Caregivers Responses to COVID-19

Social Isolation to Social Connection is a partnership project that was built on the AFP Health and Housing Navigation Study. The health and social services, and housing inventory is expected to be available to the community in June. Social Isolation to Social Connection projected the needs of older adults in the future and proposed promising practices.

Research was gathered through:

  • Senior and their caregiver interviews about their experiences with social isolation 
  • Social isolation reports and documents 
  • Community member and provider discussion about what is needed to reduce the negative physical, mental, and social impacts of the pandemic  

As a result of the research, ten recommendations were developed. These include advocating for additional support for seniors to age at home and enhanced social and physical activities; advocating for affordable, supportive, communal housing options; promoting local programs and services available including transportation options and technology support; and providing communication about public health guidelines and health care. 

Project Summary

Transit Education Program
The goal of the Transit Education program is to improve the mobility of older adults by increasing their ridership on Peterborough Transit. This will be done by increasing awareness of transit and reducing barriers to the service.
Walk and Roll Assessments
The purpose of the Walks is to identify physical features in a specific area, such as a stretch of sidewalk or municipal park, which may be barriers for older adults to use and enjoy. The Walks also identify opportunities of enhancement to these areas that would improve the accessibility and enjoyment of the area by older adults.

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