By Kieran O’Mahony
KINSALE is leading the way in becoming an Age Friendly Town that seeks to embrace older people in the community.
At a recent event in Acton’s Hotel, Deputy Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr Alan Coleman presented a number of businesses with Age Friendly Charters, detailing specific actions to benefit older people and Age Friendly stickers, following training last November.
Local business owners, managers and staff in the town took part in the Age Friendly Business Recognition Programme, to look at ways businesses can cater for the needs of older people who visit or live within the community.
‘Ageing is a matter that affects us all. As life expectancy increases, the onus is on society to adapt in a manner that provides older people with the physical, economic and social opportunities to ensure they enjoy the best quality of life. Therefore the development of an age-friendly society, with businesses taking the lead, is both urgent and timely,’ said Cllr Alan Coleman at the event.
Kinsale, as an age friendly town, ensures that businesses are welcoming, supportive and safe. It also promotes community activities and provides services that are widely known and easily accessible to older people.
A key objective of the programme was to raise awareness within the Kinsale business community of customers with dementia and to reduce the stigma attached to the conditions. ‘There are plenty of economic arguments to be made to support the Kinsale Age Friendly Business Recognition Programme – we all know about the greater spending power, disposable income and customer loyalty but most importantly it is the right thing for businesses to do,’ said Tomas O’Brien from the Kinsale Chamber of Tourism and Business.
The first businesses to take part in the programme include AIB, Bank of Ireland, Fintan Lynch Hairdressers, An Bookstór, Fitzgerald and Partners, Lloyd’s Pharmacy, The Blue Haven, The Trident Hotel, Acton’s Hotel, Alto Holistics, Market Place Surgery, Murphy’s Grocer, Kennedy’s Opticians, Kinsale Dental Practice, SuperValu, Centra, Maloney’s Pharmacy, Atlantic Offshore Adventures, Sip Coffee Lounge and Wine Bar and Sheehy Brothers Auctioneers.
Age Friendly Ireland and Kinsale Community Response to Dementia facilitated this programme with the support of Cork County Council and the Kinsale Chamber of Tourism & Business.