Results for 'social isolation'
Explores how the care sector can take advantage of the power and potential of digital technology and social networks to develop new models of support for older people. The effective use of digital technologies – based around the internet, computers, mobile phones, social networks, telecare and telehealth – are critical in enabling people to live more independent and fulfilling lives, irrespective of their health and care needs. This is especially true as the demand for care services increases. The paper, using a range of good practice examples, highlights the role of digital technology in alleviating social isolation, enabling access to information and knowledge and in supporting the lives and work of many carers around the UK. The paper calls for a better shared understanding of innovations in this sector, a more co-ordinated and coherent approach to enable carers and care seekers to easily access online information and support, greater shared learning, collaboration and partnerships, and the promotion of events that showcase digital technology innovations in care which could be adopted by local authorities, the NHS and housing providers, as well as being purchased by people funding their own support needs.
COLLINS Angela B., WRIGLEY Julie
This report evaluates the overall impact of the Joseph Rowntree Foundation Neighbourhood approaches to loneliness programme. The main principles of the Neighbourhood approaches to loneliness programme are that community activities can contribute to the well-being of people at risk of, or experiencing, loneliness; that such people can play a central role in these activities; and that this involvement can also enhance community well-being. This report is based on consultation with community researchers, professional stakeholders, programme staff and community members. The report highlights that good practice requires skilled staff who are able to communicate effectively and provide pastoral support to volunteers; reveals changes in community researchers resulting from their involvement in the programme; demonstrates where there has been community impact; and shares wider lessons which can be learnt from taking a neighbourhood approach.
KEMPTON James, TOMLIN Sam
Loneliness occurs at all stages of life but little attention has been paid to its incidence and impact in the oldest old (85+), the fourth generation. This report begins by exploring: loneliness and why it matters; the incidence of loneliness in older people; and what is known about loneliness in the oldest old (85+). It then looks six contextual criteria that should be considered when initiating or commissioning interventions to tackle loneliness: rural and urban living; gender; health; living alone; community resilience; intergenerational interaction and ageism. Using case study analysis of projects that are tackling loneliness effectively, the report then explores practical steps that can be taken to reduce levels of loneliness among the oldest old. The case studies include one-to-one interventions, group services and building social networks; and encouraging wider community engagement. The case studies also illustrate the continued willingness of individuals of all ages to get involved in their local community. Whereas people might once have volunteered informally to help people they knew, ‘permission’ to initiate contact, through formalised and structured opportunities, is important. This is an important pointer as to how our modern society can organise itself to help address loneliness.
MENTORING AND BEFRIENDING FOUNDATION
This guide aims to give an overview of the range, diversity and positive impact of mentoring and befriending activity. Using case studies and programme examples, it outlines a range of mentoring and befriending approaches and identifies the key potential outcomes, including reduced offending, improved community cohesion, improved access to employment, reduced social isolation, higher aspirations and increased independence. The document also explains how the Mentoring and Befriending Foundation can support commissioners identify effective programmes.
HEMINGWAY Ann, JACK Eleanor
A UK charity established a network of 70 friendship clubs in the south of England, facilitated by volunteers, with the aim of promoting well-being for older people. The charity provides venues and transport for participants to meet and enjoy activities locally every week for 2 hours. This article reports on a 3 year research project exploring the impacts of the intervention, using qualitative research methods and including participant observation and individual and focus group interviews. The study was based on 10 of the friendship clubs and collected information from 82 members and 18 volunteers. The article describes the intervention and the study methodology. It presents the results, with illustrative quotations from participants, covering views on the risk of becoming isolated, feeling isolated, and friendship and support. It identifies additional factors that can predispose an individual to become socially isolated, including environment and safety fears, fear of falling, and loss of confidence, and notes that even when living with their families older people can still feel socially isolated. It reports that club members and volunteers viewed themselves as assets for each other, offering support, advice and friendship, and that, overall, the perceived benefits for attendees of attending the friendship clubs fell into 3 key areas: improved well-being, social relations, and mental and physical health.