Survey on Lifelong Learning and Regional Collaboration in University Linked Continuing Care Retirement Community
Shota Tajima (Chiba University)
This paper reports interview survey on lifelong learning and regional collaboration for university linked CCRC (ULCCRC) in the United States and aims at considering the way of ULCCRC in Japan.
CCRC, continuing care retirement community, is an elderly community that can receive continuous care from a healthy period to an end-of-life period. Currently, the declining population in rural areas is a policy issue in Japan. As a priority measure of regional revitalization, 245 local governments are planning CCRCs. Thus, we interviewed 10 ULCCRCs in the US about the type of lifelong learning and the existence of regional cooperation, which are required in the Japanese CCRC.
As a result, the forms, places and prices of lifelong learning were diverse by the cooperating universities. There were few CCRCs actively engaged in regional collaboration with exchanges of facilities and people through lifelong learning.
From this investigation, following considerations were obtained. First point is the necessity of aggressive promotion of social participation in the region. Lifelong learning in Japan places emphasis on lectures, but it should include diverse social participation such as hobbies and enjoyment. Second point is the importance of participatory learning. Since social connections lead to extension of healthy life expectancy, university should give opportunities for collaboration with various students, local residents, and organizations. Third point is a support for motivation for residents to learn. Since there are few supportive institutions for lifelong learning in Japan, the creation of learning opportunity by university is highly valuable.
In conclusion, the ULCCRC in Japan is required to be responsible for not only education, but also indirect relationship with region through lifelong learning. It creates opportunities for social participation, provides participatory learning, and supports residents' willingness to learn.