This initiative was driven by the fact that Hawai‘i is the most diverse state, and is growing older at a faster pace than the rest of the nation.
Hawai`i is the most diverse state, and is growing older at a faster pace than the rest of the nation. In 2030, 24% of Hawai`i’s population will be aged 65 or older, compared to 21% nationally. In Honolulu, 27% of residents will be 65 years and older by 2040. Worldwide, a demographic phenomenon is visible and is gaining momentum through the aging of the baby-boomer generation (born 1946-1964). Between 2010 and 2040, Hawai`i’s population 65 years and older will increase 104%, compared with our total population increase of 28% over the same period. Hawai`i is revered as one of the best places to grow old in America – in large part because of the beauty of the islands, clean and lush natural resources, and the thriving Aloha spirit. Our state leads the nation in longevity and has the longest healthy life expectancy, meaning that a 65 year-old Hawai`i resident can expect to live another 16.2 additional years of life in good health.
Older adults in Hawai`i want to age in place, remaining active and independent in their communities. More than half of Honolulu’s older adults, or 57% percent, have lived in their communities for twenty years or more.
The cultural traditions and values passed down from older generations to younger generations continue to strengthen our communities, informal support networks, and multigenerational households that foster intergenerational learning, and support the transfer of wisdom from one generation to the next.
Older adults (known as kūpuna) in Honolulu are a tremendous and valued resource and therefore, the city should offer ample opportunities for older adults to be engaged in the community and with younger generations (keiki).
Simultaneous with the demographic shift, a new paradigm is changing society’s perceptions of aging toward a more positive view that embraces the surplus of human capital that lies within the older adult population, and the potential for these assets to strengthen Honolulu as a community for all ages. Honolulu can be a place that is friendly to all ages and where all ages thrive.