November 2020: VISTA Spotlight
Meet Avery Crews. She serves as an AmeriCorps VISTA with the organization, Age-Friendly Louisville.
This photo was taken from a service partnership with the Cutambi Indigenous Community in Otavalo, Ecuador ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Avery Crews works with the nonprofit Age-Friendly Louisville (AFL), a part of the worldwide age-friendly initiative run by the World Health Organization. AFL is under the guidance of the United States lead, AARP Livable Communities. The goal of AFL is to ensure accessibility, equity, and inclusivity throughout Louisville for individuals of all ages. This organization works specifically in four domains that were determined by the community as the most needed sectors for improvement in Louisville: Mobility & Accessibility, Housing, Community Supports & Health Services, and Social Participation, Respect, & Inclusion.
Recently, the Age-Friendly Louisville held its 2020 Community Progress Report, one of the first tasks she took the full lead on. Typically, this event would have been held in-person as a means of sharing accomplishments towards the Strategic Plan goals for each of the domain workgroups. It was a bit different this year with the pandemic and the nature of the target audience of this organization. This event was a big growing point for Crews because it provided opportunities to connect with leadership and community partners to establish and meet the requirements for the event. The community maintained access and insight into everything the organization has worked to achieve since the last update. She made sure that the progress report was fully detailed, having it scheduled to the minute. Crews and the rest of the team were super excited to welcome guests from a housing justice agency here in Louisville (Louisville Forward) as well as the director of the AARP Livable Communities Initiative. The coming together of all these groups and individuals showed Avery the impact of AFL on the community. It also showed the value an organization like AFL can have on a massive amount of individuals. Avery looks forward to future community outreach programs and opportunities as she continues to spread the news about AFL.
A takeaway from Crews’ service so far is that a lot of misunderstandings between generations occur due to differences in communication styles. Working with aging adults has helped her to navigate a completely different communication network and better understand how she can better serve this sector of the population.