Vital Conversations - Giving Older Women in Greater Melbourne a Voice

The findings of the Greater Melbourne Vital Signs 2017 indicated that older women were facing challenges and, in some cases, extreme disadvantage across diverse aspects of their lives. Between 2012 and 2017, the number of older women couch surfing increased by 83% and a 75% increase in older women sleeping in their cars and presenting at homelessness services. The Foundation wanted to hear more directly from older women about their lives, the challenges they face and potential solutions. The researchers in this 2019 study consulted with older women to give them a voice on the issues they are facing. Social connectedness emerged as the enabler (or barrier) to positive outcomes in housing, financial security, health and wellbeing, and technical literacy.