SINGAPORE – Philanthropic organisation Lien Foundation, an advocate for quality pre-school and eldercare services, has commissioned local firm Colours to come up with 10 innovative senior living concepts and locate them in underused and overlooked plots of land in Singapore.
The 10 concepts, which feature in a new book titled, Second Beginnings, propose using the spaces under elevated MRT tracks, empty warehouses or stadiums to support the social or residential needs of the elderly.
To time in with the release of the book, The Sunday Times asks three senior citizens what kind of senior-friendly spaces and services they hope to see in their neighbourhoods.
Name: Andre Lobo
Former Occupation: Senior Manager, Advertising & Promotions, Frasers Centrepoint
Living arrangement: Lives alone in a three-room HDB flat
What type of senior-friendly spaces I want: I hope our shopping malls can become inter-generational community hubs . The malls should be a place where the elderly have access to important information, fitness facilities to build up our strength and mobility, and common spaces with free Wi-Fi where we can hang around and interact with young people.
Name: Pauline Neo
Former Occupation: Bank Teller
Living arrangement: Lives with daughter and son in a five-room HDB flat
What type of senior-friendly spaces I want: I would like spaces or facilities that let me spend my time meaningfully. I hope for a place that allows seniors to get together to start something new, such as a hobby station that teaches balloon sculpting to children. Earning an income through this station will be a bonus.
Name: Susan Lye
Former Occupation: Tour Guide
Living arrangement: Lives with daughter in a five-room HDB flat
What type of senior-friendly spaces I want: I go to the voluntary welfare organisation YWCA in Outram Road to interact with other senior citizens every Monday.
But for other seniors who cannot move around much, we need more grassy areas in the HDB estates where we can gather and motivate one another to participate in activities. A number of gathering spaces have hard cement ground and this is not very safe for seniors who are unstable on their feet.