April 2013

Alliance Membership Latest

The Alliance now has 926 followers on Twitter and 332 organisations have now joined us as Alliance Members.  New members this month include:

LinkAge Bristol

St Helen’s Senior Voice

The Positive Ageing Company

Age UK Blackburn with Darwen

Pure Body Training

Warrington Older People’s Engagement Group

Digital Outreach

Gravesend Sailing Club

Hope Nutrition

Aylesbury Vale District Council

Ashfield Voluntary Action

Date for Your Diary:

On 23rd May, the Alliance working group on Healthy Workplaces will launch a new Employer Resource Guide.  Hosted by the Association of British Insurers, this breakfast launch will bring together organisations who have partnered in its production and those it seeks to influence.  The Employer Resource brings together simple tools and practical solutions for employers to assist them in managing a healthy and productive workforce.  It has been designed as an easy to use resource for employers of all sizes and business support organisations.  For more information, contact a member of the Secretariat.

Working Group Updates

Loneliness & Isolation:

The group met on 30 April and discussed the work of the Second Half Centre with its founder Jill Shaw Ruddock.  There was also an update of progress by Vintage Communities with their demonstrator sites in London and on the Big Lottery’s funding programme.

Money Matters:

At a meeting on 22 April, Helen White from ABI (Association of British Insurers) reported they could no longer chair the group, although ABI will remain in contact with its work.  Barry Wilford from the East Midlands Later Life Forum was appointed as the new chair.  The group discussed mapping key organisations offering financial information, services provided & starting with gathering everyone’s top five money advice enquiries.   

Improving the Lives of Excluded Older People:

The group met on 26 April at the offices of Action on Hearing Loss. Attendees included members from the NPC, NDTi, Beth Johnson Foundation, Elderly Accommodation Counsel, Association of Chief Police Officers, and Age UK. Of particular interest was the draft document from the Elderly Accommodation Counsel, detailing First Contact Schemes across the country. The intention now will be to provide a “How to” guide to encourage organisations to set up such schemes where they do not currently exist.

New Website Update

The new website is almost ready.  We have been focussing on resolving a number of issues to make the site more accessible and future proofed.  Older people, Working Groups and Members have had the opportunity to comment.  We are looking for more photos, resources and blogs to show the diversity of work underway so please do contact us if you can help and we’ll be happy to acknowledge your contribution.

Spotlight on Alliance Members’ Matters

Age UK held its For Later Life conference on 25 April.  Age Action Alliance had a well situated exhibition stand which attracted significant interest from conference delegates, including Martyn Lewis, NCVO and YouthNet Chair.  For anyone who wasn’t able to attend, do take a look at the excellent speaker presentations on Age UK’s website here.  You can also download a copy of their annual Agenda for Later Life report which mentions the Alliance on page 10.

Carers UK is carrying out a comprehensive survey, capturing carers’ experiences of social care services, the NHS, the benefits system and technology.  The State of Caring Survey also looks at the impact of caring on the ability of carers to work alongside caring, the impact on their health, finances and relationships and what support carers need to live their own lives. The key findings of the research were announced at Carers UK’s State of Caring Policy Conference on the 1May. 

The Optical Confederation is keen to share details of a new guide to the domiciliary eye health service.  The leaflet Sight Tests at Home’ developed by the Optical Confederation’s Domiciliary Eyecare Committee, also endorsed by the College of Optometrists and the Thomas Pocklington Trust, explains the key aspects of eye care for those who are unable to visit a high street optician unaccompanied due to a mental or physical disability. For details of their press release please click here. And here for a downloadable PDF with more information on this essential service.

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