Previously in Life Course Scholars, we visited the communal garden in ERC and shared our neighborhood assessments. I did not know that this existed, so it was a very enriching and enlightening experience. I loved how material that had various uses around the campus was repurposed. For example, cement garbage bins were made into giant pots for plants. The repurposed material and joint effort towards creating a greener community transformed this space into a great place for quiet contemplation. Access to gardens has healthy benefits for seniors by keeping them active. Intergenerational gardens offer a healthy outdoor activity and an opportunity to engage with younger generations.
Last Friday, we presented our findings from the neighborhood assessments conducted in Hillcrest, Pacific Beach, and Barrio Logan. During the presentation on Hillcrest, it was noted that the green space was limited and the crosswalks did not provide adequate time to cross. In our neighborhood assessment of Pacific Beach, we found that there are many green spaces, such as Kate Sessions Park, Law Street Park, and Fanuel Street Park, there lack public toilets both indoors and outdoors. We also noted that there were bus stops every two or three blocks and the majority of sidewalks are wheelchair-friendly (i.e. dropped curb to road level).
From these various interviews, projects, and activities, I have learned about the diverse range of factors that contribute to healthy aging from dancing to the built and social environment to mindfulness meditation. The challenging part is now addressing how we will move forward to support these factors and enact positive change for elders in our society who are often neglected.
Thanks for reading,