The Purposeful Aging Los Angeles Initiative: The Purposeful Aging Los Angeles Initiative (PALA) is a groundbreaking initiative and partnership, between the County and the City of Los Angeles, other cities, AARP, the private sector, and universities. The partnership was formed to help the Los Angeles region prepare for a dramatic demographic shift in the older adult population that will occur by 2030. PALA’s ultimate goal is to make the Los Angeles region the most age-friendly in the world.
PALA is creating a more coordinated system of service across LA County’s 88 cities and two Area Agencies on Aging (City of Los Angeles, and Los Angeles County). PALA continues to help Los Angeles County enhance its understanding, planning, and coordination to meet the needs of its aging population.
PALA was formed to help prepare LA County for a forecasted dramatic increase in the aging population. Los Angeles County’s 2 million residents aged 60+ are expected to near 3 million, 28% of the County’s population, by 2030.
The initial phase of the PALA initiative focused on community engagement from 2016-2018 (information can be found on purposefulagingla.com)
A survey of the community yielded more than 14,000 responses and identified local priorities. Results were analyzed by leading researchers and distilled into 8 Domains of Livability: Communication & Information, Community Support & Health Services, Emergency Preparedness & Resilience, Outdoor Spaces & Buildings, Social Participation, Respect & Social Inclusion, and Transportation.
PALA’s initial phase resulted in an Action Plan which outlined recommendations drawn from listening sessions with experts, community members, and advocates. Eight working groups were formed to implement the Action Plan in 2019, drawing from relevant County and City departments, community organizations, academics, service providers and interested older adults.
PALA Phase II
PALA Phase II, started on January 01, 2022. It is the continuation of PALA priorities focusing on the 8 Domains of Livability (reference AARP site) that will make Los Angeles become more livable for both older residents and Angelenos of all ages. PALA aims to better serve the large, diverse, and growing aging population of Los Angeles by sharing best practices, identifying gaps, and advocating for older people on issues ranging from connectivity, housing, emergency preparedness, and social isolation.
PALA Phase II continues the work outlined in the Action Plan including supporting further alignment of services and deepening collaboration of the new stand-alone Los Angeles County Aging & Disabilities Department by increasing partnership between Los Angeles County and City of Los Angeles. Additionally, further service delivery alignment includes reducing the digital divide, assisting older adults experiencing homelessness and addressing food insecurity. In addition to the eight Domains of Livability, PALA Phase II incorporates the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Community Living, and No Wrong Door (NWD) approach which focuses on building community partnerships, providing services using a person-centered approach, and reducing the number of barriers for accessing services
According to the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP):
The population of the United States is rapidly aging.
By 2030, 1 of every 5 people in the U.S. will be 65 or older.
By 2034, the number of adults older than 65 will be greater than the number of children under 18.
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