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Home Front and Center: Supporting Access to Affordable and Quality Housing

February 23, 2022

We are excited to share with you RRF Foundation for Aging's (RRF) latest issue brief in a series of publications describing the Foundation's approach to grantmaking and improving the quality of life of older people. Home Front and Center: Supporting Access to Affordable and Quality Housing gives an overview of the rise of housing insecurity for older adults, describes some of the work the Foundation is funding to promote safe and affordable housing, and invites others to join us.Our Approach to Increasing Safe, Affordable Housing for Older AdultsWhile the issue of accessible housing confronts millions of Americans, the problem is especially acute for older adults. But for those whose access to safe and affordable housing has been limited by economic inequities and discrimination, such as communities of color and LGBTQ+ individuals, the disparities of housing insecurity loom much larger. And with the end of COVID-19 eviction moratoriums, the threat of homelessness confronts many older adults with low or fixed incomes. For these reasons, and more, studies show that the ranks of homeless older people are rising fast, despite a decline in homelessness in other age groups.RRF Foundation for Aging has been at the forefront of collaborating with organizations and individuals developing and advocating for promising approaches to bolstering housing access, security, and equality for older people. Our grantees are helping older tenants of Chicago organize for better housing, advocating for stronger rights under federal housing laws, gathering data on affordable housing availability, and much more.Read our latest issue brief to learn more about our Three Strategies for More Affordable, Supportive Housing and the innovative work of our grantees in this important area.We look forward to partnering with you on this critical work!Click "Download" to access this resource online.

Engaged and Thriving: Promoting Social and Intergenerational Connectedness

October 28, 2021

We are pleased to introduce RRF's third issue brief in a series of publications describing the Foundation's approach to grantmaking and improving the quality of life of older people.  Engaged and Thriving: Promoting Social and Intergenerational Connectedness gives an overview of older adults' experiences of social isolation and loneliness, describes some of the work the Foundation is funding to promote social connectedness, and invites others to join us in developing creative, innovative solutions to address this critical component of healthy aging.RRF's Response to this CrisisMeaningful connection is a fundamental part of what constitutes a good life at any age. And although relationships may be many or few and may vary in intensity and duration, they are a kind of emotional lifeblood, nourishing us and playing a critical role in our larger health and well-being, especially as we get older. Of course, the flip side of social connection is isolation and the feelings of loneliness that may follow.In one study, 40% of older adults reported feeling lonely and 24% were socially isolated. There are many reasons why older adults can be isolated and as the COVID-19 pandemic brought to light, the unequal allocation of resources has further created a divide that separates many of us from the technological supports and services that can provide needed connections to people and programs.RRF is responding to this crisis not only by funding innovative projects to address social isolation and loneliness, but also by supporting the development and implementation of new assessment tools to measure these issues and their impact. In addition, we are asking questions that will lead to better understanding of what works and why, and how to best replicate those successful efforts. Read our latest issue brief to learn more about RRF's Four Strategies Towards Greater Connection and the innovative work of our grantees in this important area.Click "Download" to view this resource online.

Working Together to Achieve Economic Security in Later Life

January 21, 2021

We are pleased to introduce RRF's issue brief on Economic Security in Later Life. This is the first in a series that, together, will describe the foundation's approach to grantmaking and to working to improve the quality of life of older people. It is also an invitation to others to partner with the foundation to develop new and innovative ways that will enable more older adults to achieve a greater measure of financial well-being.RRF envisions a future in which all of us, as we age, have the means to achieve a secure and dignified later life—sufficient income to meet basic expenses; assistance, if needed, to plan and manage our income and savings effectively; and a stable, equitable public and private system of supports, services, and protections that can help us achieve and maintain economic well-being.All too often, discussions of economic security lay blame on individuals and their inability to "save for retirement." Most of us, however, work hard throughout our lives (and many of us must continue to work well past a traditional retirement age). We pay taxes, contribute to Social Security and other programs and help our communities in many ways. Despite this, financial struggles in later life are distressingly common, resulting from larger economic forces beyond our control, systemic inequities, and an insufficient safety net.This brief describes RRF's interest in promoting economic security in later life, as well as our commitment to generating innovative solutions to the challenges we face. We look forward to joining with others in this important work.Click "Download" to access this resource.