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Results for 'social networks'

Results 1 - 10 of 62

Agents for change: an evaluation of the Somerset Village Agents programme

COMMUNITY COUNCIL FOR SOMERSET
2017

An evaluation of the Somerset Village Agents programme, which aims to reduce isolation and help connect excluded and vulnerable people with services that support them to improve their independence, health and wellbeing. It uses locally based staff who act as first point of contact for people needing information and support. The evaluation, undertaken jointly by South West Forum and Clarity CiC with support from University of Gloucestershire, included analysis of client data, interviews with clients and discussions with locally based staff. Analysis was carried out between October 2016 and February 2017. The results of the evaluation found that the Somerset Village Agents programme is highly regarded by clients, statutory agencies and voluntary and public organisations who have a connection with the programme. It is also helping the most isolated, lonely and vulnerable people in the community, especially older people and those with disabilities and/or long-term health conditions. Areas for potential improvement identified by the evaluation included expanding reach of the programme to reach more younger people and more work to build community capacity. A cost benefit analysis of the programme estimates that for the 21-month period reviewed the Village Agents programme cost £646,000 to deliver and generated £2.5 million in direct savings to the state and a further £2.74 million in wider social value. The report makes recommendations for the future development of the programme.

Bringing people together: how community action can tackle loneliness and social isolation

ANDERSON Zoe, et al
2019

Learning and examples from a range of community and voluntary sector projects tackling social isolation and loneliness in the UK. Drawing on the work of charities, the report considers the causes of loneliness, looks at 'what works' to prevent it and suggests ways to offer support to those who are isolated or lonely. Preventative initiatives include giving something back through volunteering, helping people to take on new interests, and investing in community spaces to help people share interests together. Examples to support those who are lonely or isolated include giving people choices in how to get involved and to make steps manageable, simple solutions such as befriending and peer support, tailoring solutions for different age groups, and using technology such as such as social media and computer tablets to widen access to support. The report shows that supporting people to improve their mindset, building new connections with others, building confidence and developing a new sense of purpose, can have a big impact in reducing feelings of loneliness and isolation. The report is based on interviews with funded organisations and staff in The National Lottery Community Fund staff.

Embedding community circles in support for older people living in residential care homes or extra care: a practical resource

ROUTLEDGE Martin, BARTON Cath, WILTON Sharon
2019

Based upon the first two years of experience developing Community Circles in Wigan, this resource shares learning and progress to date. It also outlines the key roles and activities to consider when setting up Community Circles in residential care homes and extra care housing. It will be useful for anyone wanting to include Community Circles as part of the offer of support for older people in residential care or extra care. It will also be of wider use to those looking to embed a range of person and community centred approaches in these types of support. Links to additional guides, reports, tools and materials are included throughout.

Social infrastructure: how shared spaces make communities work. Briefing

AMBITION FOR AGEING
2019

This briefing highlights the importance of shared spaces to help reduce social isolation amongst older people as the population ages and austerity leads to more and more state responsibilities falling to civil society. Shared spaces could be public libraries, commercial spaces such as cafes or leisure facilities and parks and green spaces. The briefing explains how different kinds of shared spaces help support different types and levels of social capital. This can be between people who share a common bond as well as connections between diverse groups of people. The ability to build even weak social ties with a diversity of people can help provide bridges to new social worlds, helping older people feel more connected to the places in which they live and improving resilience. The briefing summarises findings from the report, 'Social Infrastructure: how shared spaces make communities work' produced by MICRA as part of the Ambition for Ageing programme.

Social infrastructure: how shared spaces make communities work

YARKER Sophie
2019

This report, from the Ambition for Ageing project, identifies how social infrastructure in neighbourhoods can promote social interaction and reduce social isolation for older people. Social infrastructure provides spaces and opportunities for people to have social interactions and build connections. The report argues there needs to be a diversity of social infrastructure to support different types and levels of social connection, and considers the importance of the connections made between diverse groups of people - also known as bridging capital. It also looks at the types of social infrastructure that facilitate this, which tend to be places that the majority of the community would have the opportunity to visit, such as public libraries, cafes and parks and open public spaces. Key points include: that shared spaces within neighbourhoods are vital for reducing social isolation for older people; that different kinds of social infrastructure help support different types and levels of social capital; and the need for social infrastructure that supports intergenerational and intercultural encounters. Despite its often informal nature, social infrastructure is not naturally occurring and therefore The report highlights the need for direct investment and support to help the development of the social infrastructure and the creation of third places.

Addressing older men's experiences of loneliness and social isolation in later life

WILLIS Paul, et al
2019

A report summarising the key findings from a two-year study to explore how older men from different backgrounds stay socially connected and combat loneliness and social isolation. A total of 111 men aged 65+ from five different groups took part in interviews. The groups were: men who are single or living alone; men living rural areas; men caring for partners; gay men who live alone; and men living with hearing loss. The finding identify variations in experiences of loneliness and social isolation across different groups. Other key findings show that men valued groups that tried to increase social opportunities and interaction; they particularly valued mixed-age groups, and groups that facilitated emotional and social ties with other men. The briefing looks at the implications of the findings for social care, voluntary services, and for policy makers and commissioners of voluntary and community-based service. It calls for greater priority to be given to the long-term resourcing and running of community-groups for older adults. It also recommends there should also be more inclusive, tailored groups for older men in marginalised groups.

A life less lonely: the state of the art in interventions to reduce loneliness in people with mental health problems

MANN F., et al
2017

PURPOSE:: There is growing evidence of significant harmful effects of loneliness. Relatively little work has focused on how best to reduce loneliness in people with mental health problems. This study aims to present an overview of the current state of the art in loneliness interventions in people with mental health problems, identify relevant challenges, and highlight priorities for future research and implementation. METHODS: A scoping review of the published and grey literature was conducted, as well as discussions with relevant experts, to propose a broad classification system for types of interventions targeting loneliness. RESULTS: Interventions were categorised as 'direct', targeting loneliness and related concepts in social relationships, and 'indirect' broader approaches to well-being that may impact on loneliness. Four broad groups are described of direct interventions: changing cognitions; social skills training and psychoeducation; supported socialisation or having a 'socially-focused supporter'; and 'wider community approaches'. The most promising emerging evidence appears to be in 'changing cognitions', but, as yet, no approaches have a robust evidence base. Challenges include who is best placed to offer the intervention, how to test such complex interventions, and the stigma surrounding loneliness. CONCLUSIONS: Development of clearly defined loneliness interventions, high-quality trials of effectiveness, and identifying which approaches work best for whom is required. Promising future approaches may include wider community initiatives and social prescribing. It is important to place loneliness and social relationships high on the wider public mental health and research agenda.

Harnessing technology to tackle loneliness

WPI ECONOMICS, OAKLEY Matthew, ROSE Christina Bovill
2019

This report, commissioned by Vodafone and produced by WPI Economics, looks at the prevalence of loneliness in the UK and role technology can play in alleviating loneliness in older people by keeping them connected to their family and friends for longer. Focusing on chronic loneliness amongst people aged over 50, the report also provides new estimates of the potential scale of costs associated with loneliness, which it estimates as £1.8 billion per year to the UK economy. It highlights how technology can be used alongside more traditional community services to facilitate social interaction, and that learning how to use it more fully can reduce loneliness and promote an active lifestyle. This can help older people remain independent in their homes and communities and increase confidence and the likelihood of positive interactions. It can also help to maintain and build networks and contacts, with technology used as a way of keeping in touch with friends and family and accessing new communities and groups. The report outlines five recommendations to promote the use of technology in tackling loneliness, which over improving access to technology, increasing confidence and skills in the use of technology and supporting innovative technological solutions.

Chatty Cafe Scheme

Chatty Cafe Scheme

The Chatty Cafe Scheme supports cafes to designate a 'Chatter & Natter' table where customers can sit if they are happy to talk to other customers. The scheme aims to tackle loneliness by bringing people of all ages together from mums with their babies to older people.

Health and Wellbeing Innovation Commission Inquiry: social connections and loneliness

BEACH Brian
2018

This report reflects on how innovation can help foster and improve social connections to the benefit for all people in an ageing society. It also sets out examples of effective innovation in the area of social connections, opportunities and barriers to further innovation, and recommendations to support innovation. The report is based on an oral evidence session where expert witnesses gave evidence to the commissioners and research from ILC-UK. It is one of four publications from ILC-UK’s Health and Wellbeing Innovation Commission Inquiry, which examined the potential for innovation in the areas of health and wellbeing to ensure that services remain sustainable, address needs efficiently, and contribute to positive experiences in later life.

Results 1 - 10 of 62

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News

Moving Memory

Moving Memory Practice example about how the Moving Memory Dance Theatre Company is challenging perceived notions of age and ageing.

Chatty Cafe Scheme

Chatty Cafe Scheme Practice example about how the Chatty Cafe Scheme is helping to tackle loneliness by bringing people of all ages together

Oomph! Wellness

Oomph! Wellness Practice example about how Oomph! Wellness is supporting staff to get older adults active and combat growing levels of social isolation

KOMP

KOMP Practice example about how KOMP, designed by No Isolation is helping older people stay connected with their families

LAUGH research project

LAUGH research project Practice example about a research project to develop highly personalised, playful objects for people with advanced dementia
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