Results for 'social networks'
COLLEY Kathryn, et al
Scottish research study to examine the barriers preventing older people, including older people with long-term health conditions and disabilities, from accessing outdoor recreation opportunities. The research involved two stages: an investigation of the spatial distribution of older people using small-scale geographical units and semi-structured interviews with 27 older people across three case study sites of varying levels of urbanity and access to different types of green/blue natural resources. Results from the spatial distribution analysis found that remote areas and isolated small towns had higher concentrations of older people and older people with health problems or disabilities. It also identifies that the negative impacts on the well-being and resilience of local communities are also likely to be stronger in remote areas, with challenges in accessing medical and care facilities. The case study work found the barriers to participation in outdoor recreation by older people are multiple and inter-related. Key categories of barriers identified in the interviews were: poor health and (im)mobility; lack of or reduced social connections; fragility and vulnerability; lack of motivation and time commitments; safety; and weather and season. Key implications for policy and practice identified from the research include: for interventions to address the multiple and interrelated barriers preventing older people from participating in outdoor recreation, using integrated and holistic approaches involving different organisations; for ‘green prescribing’ by doctors and medical professionals to be integrated with existing initiatives (eg walking groups) which offer opportunities for overcoming social and motivational barriers; and for interventions to identify ways of providing transport access to outdoor spaces to older people.
This report, commissioned by Friends of the Elderly, looks at the key factors likely to shape the future of older-age loneliness in the UK over the next 15 years. It identifies the challenges and opportunities in reducing loneliness and highlights possible interventions and preventative measures. The report draws on existing research resources, in-depth interviews with six older people who lived alone, and data from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing and Government Actuaries' Department forecasts on age, marital status and partnership status. Areas discussed include: the implications of demographic change; wealth and work; leisure and social life; family and friends; the use of new technologies for contact and communication; and independence and connectedness at home. Key findings include: a connection between low contact with family members and loneliness, a link between poverty and loneliness; and the potential of technology to reduce loneliness.
MENTAL HEALTH FOUNDATION
Examines how investing in building and maintaining good relationships and tackling the barriers to forming them positively impact on mental health and wellbeing. The evidence shows that people who are more socially connected to family, friends, or their community are happier, physically healthier and live longer, with fewer mental health problems than people who are less well connected. The paper looks at relationships across the life course and why they matter, focusing on children and young people, adults and later life. Higher rates of mental health problems such as depression and anxiety have been associated with loneliness, isolation and social rejection during adolescence and similarly having few close relationships has been linked to higher rates of depression and stress in older adults. The report calls on national governments, public bodies and employers to promote good relationships and tackle barriers, including mounting pressures on work–life balance and the impact of bullying and unhealthy relationships.
INNOVATION UNIT, GREATER MANCHESTER PUBLIC HEALTH NETWORK
This is a practical guide for getting started and growing asset based primary care at scale. It highlights examples of asset based approaches from both within Greater Manchester and beyond. Assets can be broadly grouped into: personal assets e.g. the knowledge, skills, talents and aspirations of individuals; social assets e.g. relationships and connections that people have with their friends, family and peers; community assets e.g. voluntary sector organisations (VSO) associations, clubs and community groups; and neighbourhood assets e.g. physical places and buildings that contribute to health and wellbeing such as parks, libraries and leisure centres. Drawing on research with commissioners, GPs, the community and voluntary sector, public health professionals, patients and the general population, the guide sets out what it takes to make asset based primary care work in practice, and what it would take to adopt it, not just in isolated pockets but across a whole neighbourhood, system or region. It details the background to asset based care, presents ten case studies and makes recommendations for how to develop an asset based primary care in a locality. Key steps to developing and implementing an assets-based approach include: setting up a team to lead the work; understanding which patients to focus on; understanding and mapping the user journey; understanding which approach will work best in a community; creating a development plan for the neighbourhood team; implementing and evaluating the plan; and planning for sustainability.
PARSFIELD Matthew, et al
The final report of the Connected Communities for Mental Wellbeing and Social Inclusion programme, which looked at how different interventions can contribute to the development of resilient, inclusive communities with higher wellbeing. This report examines how interventions affect relationships and attitudes, and how relationships and attitudes affect individuals' and communities' ability to develop social value. The programme involved a survey residents in seven ward-sized localities, an analysis of the data for insight into local social networks and wellbeing, and work with local people to develop projects to support social connections. Results found that community-led action and targeted interventions can strengthen local communities and lead to substantial benefits. It is argued that by investing in interventions which build and strengthen networks of social relationships, four kinds of social value or ‘dividend’ shared by people in the community will develop: wellbeing, citizenship, capacity, and an economic dividend through improved employability and health.
This report outlines the progress made in implementing Local Area Coordination in England and Wales between 2012 and 2015. This intervention aims to reduce demand for health and social care by intentionally working to support individuals, families, carers and communities to stay strong, diverting people from formal services wherever possible through sustainable, local, flexible individual and community solutions. The report, which include examples of implementation, stories of success and data describing the improved outcomes and efficiency, suggests that early development sites are demonstrating significant improvements in the quality of people's lives while also providing savings to public services. The stories in this report illustrate how Local Area Coordination: builds individual, family and community resilience; reduces demand for services; reduces isolation and loneliness; increases choice, control and contribution; builds inclusion and citizenship; is a catalyst for reform; and simplifies the system for local people. The report concludes with the suggestion that the strength of Local Area Coordination rests in its ability to act as a single, local, accessible point of contact - simplifying the system, reducing duplication and focusing on strength, inclusion, leadership and citizenship for all.
BAKER Keith, IRVING Adele
A promising approach to the management of dementia is ‘social prescribing’. Social prescribing is a form of ‘co-production’ that involves linking patients with non-clinical activities, typically delivered by voluntary and community groups, in an effort to improve their sense of well-being. The success of social prescribing depends upon the ability of boundary-spanning individuals within service delivery organisations to develop referral pathways and collaborative relationships through ‘networks’. This article examines the operation of a pilot social prescribing programme in the North East of England, targeted at older people with early onset dementia and depression, at risk of social isolation. It is argued that the scheme was not sustained, in part, because the institutional logics that governed the actions of key boundary-spanning individuals militated against the collaboration necessary to support co-production.
An evaluation of a Skills for Care funded a programme of 12 pilot projects, across 11 organisations, for 12 months in 2013/14 designed to support the development of dementia friendly communities (DFCs), by improving community understanding and awareness of dementia and supporting people living with dementia and their carers to participate in their communities. Section 1 of the report provides an introduction both to the underlying objectives of the programme, and to the participating pilot sites. Section 2 presents an overview of the cross-cutting themes and issues identified across the sites, including motivation and engagement, working with the wider community, intergenerational aspects, engaging with GPs and the NHS, and impact and outcomes. The methodology for the evaluation included analysis of written reports; and one to one semi-structured interviews with project leads. The report highlights the importance of motivation and personal engagement as driving forces while suggesting that most projects encountered difficulties – to a greater or lesser extent – in trying to work with the wider community in developing awareness and understanding of dementia. A few of the projects were addressing intergenerational dimensions of dementia awareness and were working with schools, or were planning to develop such work. In working with a range of local partners many projects were deliberately engaging with the NHS in general and with GPs in particular to increase diagnosis rates. The report concludes that equipping people with the skills and understanding to respond to the needs of people with dementia has great potential to bring about transformational change and to enable genuine social inclusion.
This report looks at the scale and impact of loneliness among older people and argues that the arts are a powerful tool to tackle the problem. It suggests that older people need a broad range of opportunities and activities to help them maintain healthy social relationships. These can include care and befriending support, but just as important are opportunities that connect them to their communities, such as faith, learning, fitness, leisure and cultural activities. The arts are an effective way to tackle loneliness but can be overlooked by older people’s services. The report provides some practical actions for this activity to be increased and a list of resources. It contains an appended series of ten case studies drawn from some of the arts organisations currently funded by the Baring Foundation. These illustrate some of the many ways in which the arts can make a difference: in rural locations or in the inner city, in a residential care home, a community or an arts venue, through reinventing the tradition of the tea dance for the 21st century or in a major new festival.
This article provides a baseline analysis of social capital in the UK, using the latest available data. The data are based on 25 headline measures proposed by the Office for National Statistics, which cover four key aspects of social capital: personal relationships, social network support, civic engagement and trust and cooperative norms. Key findings include: around 1 in 10 people in the UK reported feeling lonely all, most, or more than half of the time in 2011/12 and just over a third said that they wish they could spend more time with their family and have more social contact. Nearly 1 in 5 people reported looking after or giving special help to someone sick, disabled or elderly and nearly a fifth of people had given unpaid help or worked as a volunteer in a local, national or international organisation or charity in the last 12 months in 2012/13. Half of people reported being very or quite interested in politics and around two-thirds thought people in their neighbourhood could be trusted. Nearly three-quarters of people felt people in their neighbourhood get along with each other and are willing to help each other.