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Kansas City Jumpstart Grantees

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Eight partnerships in the Kansas City Metro Area were each awarded a "JumpStart the Conversation" grant on March 11, 2008. 

The winning projects exemplify the use of innovative ideas focused on creating livable communities for all ages and the theme of "housing for older adults." With the Kansas City metropolitan area approaching the two million population mark, these strategies help strengthen "aging in place" services and work to forge new partnerships and broaden the housing options between home and health-care facilities. Click here to view the grants below. 

The grants were provided in conjunction with a Kansas City workshop, titled Housing's Role in the Kansas City Metro Area: Developing a Livable Community for All Ages. The workshop was the fourth of six regional workshops around the country focused on creating livable communities for all ages. The workshops and grants are part of the national Aging in Place Initiative undertaken by Partners for Livable Communities (Partners) and the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a), with funding provided by MetLife Foundation. The workshop took place at the Kauffman Foundation Conference Center on February 4, 2008, and was hosted by the Johnson County Area Agency on Aging, the Mid-America Regional Council, the Shepherd's Center Kansas City Central, and the Wyandotte/Leavenworth Area Agency on Aging.
    
As a result of the workshop and grant opportunities, Kansas City officials believe that the metro area will have a renewed sense of urgency to approach community livability for all. In a city approaching the two-million population mark, with more than 11 percent of the population 65 years old and over, local organizations and individuals are energized to face the challenges that accompany this time of change. 

Kansas City Jumpstart Grants: 

  • Center for Practical Bioethics: to fund discounted enrollment for up to ten partners in the "Community of Practice" (COP) COP will be used to clarify issues, identify resources and models, and educate the growing list of partners.The Center for Practical Bioethics will provide facilitation through the COP model that will follow the conclusion of the three-week Aging-Friendly Communities online conference and provide ongoing support for the next six months to sustain interest, encourage participation and educate the partners and participating organizations in myriad efforts and opportunities for leadership. COP will help train participants by accessing and sharing experts from around the country, providing collaboration on successful models at work, and assisting the Center in developing common language and concepts. Archival access to presentations is a key element of this ongoing education. 
  • HomeSharing and Metropolitan Community College Foundation: to create the brochure called "Aging in Place Metropolitan Kansas City Resource Guide." Organizations and resources that share the mission of helping seniors to age in place will be the partners in developing this brochure. Their contact information will be compiled, and the brochure will be updated every six months to ensure accurate information and contacts. Participating organizations will meet to develop the scope of this document. A first printing of 1,000 brochures will be delivered to all offices and organizations that agree to have it publicly available to interested persons. 
  • InnerLight Ministries, Inc.: to initiate a quarterly event called the "Senior Citizen Community Information Fair." At this event, older adults can identify and locate the service(s) they need. This event will gather organizations from a vast number of services that are already available but are unknown to older adults. Emphasis is placed on services pertaining to housing options, home maintenance, finance, health care, elder care planning, transportation needs, and other support services. This service will unite the older adult community and will be of assistance to a wider range of people outside the aged community, who will eventually be in the same age group as those whom these events are targeting.
  • Jewish Family Services: to develop and implement a "Good Neighbors" program for adults age 65 and older. The program is designed to bring the elements of a retirement community to the community at large. Members of the Good Neighbors program can request minor home repairs; chore services; information and referral; transportation; safety/home modifications; and health assessments. The program meets the needs of older adults who desire to remain in their own homes rather than moving to a seniors-only community. This model is a fusion of several innovative programs around the world, including the Beacon Hill Village model in Boston, MA; the Supportive Community model developed by the Association for the Planning and Development of Services for the Aged in Israel; the St. Louis NORC; and the S.A.I.L. program in Madison, Wisconsin. 
  • Metropolitan Community College Longview in partnership with the Metropolitan Community College Foundation and KC MASS Services: to host a seminar on housing needs and options for older adults and inform the 50-plus population of specific, innovative housing options to enable them to "age in place." The seminar will provide an opportunity to educate professionals from the building contractor and real estate industries, and it will garner their support and active participation in this initiative. Follow-up classes and seminars will provide additional information on specific aspects of "aging in place."  MCC-Longview will offer supplementary educational and enrichment classes and workshops to enhance an independent lifestyle. With the combined resources of the Metropolitan Community College district, MCC-Longview is positioned to provide educational and support services and elicit established and prospective partnerships in the business and social sectors.
  • Metro Lutheran Ministry in partnership with Ivanhoe Neighborhood Association and the City of Kansas City: to create a partnership between one of the largest neighborhood associations in Kansas City with a high number of older adults, the Ivanhoe Neighborhood Association, and the City of Kansas City, Missouri, to assist older adults with monitoring and minor home repair work necessary for overall community safety. Through the partnership a quality care system will be developed which will identify and refer older adults who need monitoring of their health and well-being. Participants will be monitored on an ongoing basis and will receive the necessary advocacy to ensure their safety. Older adults will also be referred and will receive necessary repair work on their homes.
  • Thomas J. Brown, Jr. Foundation, Inc.: to provide the groundwork to recruit competent and skilled professionals with experience in minor interior and exterior home repair and lawn maintenance that will have a direct and positive impact on older adults. By developing a network of resources, tailored to the needs of seniors, and utilizing funding from local businesses, housing and government agencies, and senior assistance programs, the TJB Foundation will extend its services to a minimum of fifty octogenarians by the end of 2010. With the expansion of the Foundations resources, a wider range services can be extended to Kansas City area residents. Many octogenarians are faced with health, financial, and accessibility issues; it is the goal of the Foundation to provide a portion of relief from the everyday responsibilities of maintaining their residences to a level of dignity that can only enhance their quality of life. The Foundation has recruited companies in the following areas to provide services: HVAC, lawn service, electric, plumbing, roofing, gutter service, carpentry, and painting.
  • University of Kansas Medical Center Research Institute, Inc. in partnerships with the University of Kansas Medical Center - Occupational Therapy Education, Physical Therapy Education, and Teaching and Learning Technology departments: to develop a collaborative educational tool for students to begin exploring ways to modify a home environment for facilitating "aging in place." Students will explore a two-story home in a virtual environment, assess how the home meets the needs of an aging adult, and make recommendations for changes to the home.  Students will revisit the modified virtual home and determine if their recommended changes were successful choices for supporting older adults at home. This experience allows students to try different modifications, make errors, and determine alternative solutions. The result of this educational tool will be to better prepare students as future clinicians for assessing the home environment and assisting families with "aging in place" options.
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Life Sciences Initiative

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Kansas City, MO

An initiative of the Kansas City Area Life Sciences Institute that has brought unprecedented research and commercialization opportunities to the Kansas City area.

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Silver Haired Legislature

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Kansas City, MO

An elected body of officials, ages 60 years or older, serving a number of communities across Northwest Missouri.

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Climate Protection Partnership

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Greater Kansas City

Local businesses that promote environmental strategies as a necessary action for the continued economic success of the community.

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The Role of Housing: Developing a Livable Kansas City Metro Area for All Ages

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This report documents the Aging in Place Workshop in Kansas City which focused on one of the most critical issues facing older adults—finding affordable and suitable housing options. Click here to download the report.

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Jan Kreamer

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Former President of the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation, for her pioneering efforts to redefine the leadership role that community foundations have in creating regional cooperation across the United States..
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