As an independent partnership of organisations, we work together to take a collaborative approach to the challenges of an ageing society and promote opportunities and contribution by older people themselves.  These resources have been developed by members either in partnership or are considered good practice by Alliance members.

Key Resources

EngAgeNet’s comprehensive new publication: ‘A New Narrative on Ageing’

Member Resource

Negative portrayals of older people are commonplace: the media is largely preoccupied with the assumed cost of ageing, reinforcing a view that older people are dead weight in society - non-productive beneficiaries of state largesse; at the same time, however, they are perceived as well off, and in the eyes of some social commentators responsible for both the housing crisis and youth unemployment.  Like any group outside the social mainstream, older people are routinely stereotyped and are the subject of many false assumptions and untruths.

All Resources

Self-help guides – Care & Repair England, working with Silverlinks

Alliance Product

Self-help guides on Making your home a better place to live with a long-term condition Care & Repair England, working with Silverlinks, has a range of self-help guides for older people with long term conditions and their carers on making their home a better place to live. There are six guides covering respiratory, macular and heart disease, dementia, stroke and arthritis; and a general online guide for people with long term conditions. Each guide advises on what people can do to their home to make living with long term conditions more manageable. They look at areas such as: - • design and layout • lighting and heating • safety, security and technology • gadgets and equipment • going out and about The aim is to make life easier so that people can continue to live independently and do the things they want to do. The guides also describe the range of alternative housing options and offer suggestions about where to find more detailed information, advice and help. You can access the guides on Silverlink’s Information for Older People page.

Spotlight on Older People – 20th March – 23rd April 2017

Alliance Product

Chat Mats from Coffee Companions really are for anyone, anywhere at any time – especially when mind reading doesn’t work. However, some people will feel nervous or daunted by the idea of sitting there with a Chat Mat on their table waiting to see if someone will join them – that is why Coffee Companions also includes the notion of Companions Hour. Locations that register via the website will be listed so that those either living in or visiting the area can see who is particularly happy to welcome new and existing customers wanting to chat. In the longer term this will have a nominal monthly cost to encourage locations to keep their listing up to date (we don’t want someone to pluck up their courage, perhaps venture out for the first time in a while, and then be turned away) but for the next 3 months (at least), locations can ‘give it a go’ for FREE with no long term obligation.

  • For the location this may be a way to fill the empty tables at a time that is normally quiet.
  • For individuals this can provide a stepping stone to something more – new connections or a place to eat when cooking is unappealing.
  • For groups this might provide a chance to talk to potential new members, chat through ideas with a new group of people, or simply provide a focus for a group outing.
  • For business locations this might provide an easier alternative that arranging a full on Randomised Coffee Trial.
A sense of humour can become hidden if there is no one to share it with. Following a conversation about ageing at a Companions Hour one of the regular attendees dug out the poem ‘When I am an old woman I will wear purple’ to share. The following week one of the older regulars came along dressed from head to toe in purple! When locations register they get a window sticker to help let people know the time of the Companions Hour. This can provide a reason for a local community listing which may be free, and we are happy to share information on social media, and in our other press coverage, to help build the impact for all. We also provide some disposable Chat Mats for giving out to customers at any time – some put them on the tables between the salt and pepper, others put them by the sugar, and yet others give them out at the till as they serve customers. Whatever approach is taken we love to get feedback to share with others and develop our thinking. During a Companions Hour conversation turned to books that individuals were reading. This created interest in trying authors and genres that individuals had not tried before. It became a feature of this group that as they finished a book they would lend or give it to others creating common interests across the age gap of over 50years. Some have pointed out that coffee can be expensive or not to everyone’s taste. Anything that brings people together is encouraged, even a glass of water. Where cost is an issue then a great initiative called Suspended Coffees might be the answer. They suggest a small act of kindness in the form of those that can afford a coffee to ‘buy one forward’ for someone that can’t. The possibility of a location combining both initiatives so that everyone, regardless of income, can have a coffee and a chat is truly exciting. Caroline Billington
Mobile General Enquiries 07954 440241 0845 003 0630
www.coffeecompanions.co.uk

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Helpful Websites

Snapshot Analysis of the Age Action Alliance

Alliance Product

Many thanks to those of you who have contributed your time and effort to help inform discussions of the Alliance’s future. We have conducted a research project. It explores the Alliance’s value and suggests three priority areas to consider when moving forward: (1) finding a sustainable funding model, (2) reviewing the working groups, and (3) increasing members’ involvement. The analysis builds on existing AAA material and general members’ surveys from 2012 and 2014. In addition, semi-structured interviews and an online survey were conducted with Secretariat and Alliance members. Attached is link to the summary of the findings and the SWOT analysis. http://ageactionalliance.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/Snapshot-Analysis-of-the-Age-Action-Alliance-Summary.pdf. The full report is available on request.