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Social isolation kills more people than obesity - and it's just as stigmatised

Posted on 25 October 2016



Groundwork West Midlands will be leading on the Every Step of the Way strand of Ageing Better in Birmingham, supporting the Experts by Experience, a group of older adults from across the hubs who themselves have experienced social isolation. Working to facilitate the co-production model, ensuring that at all levels, the programme is representing the views of older adults. The Experts by Experience will receive support and training to enable a meaningful contribution. The group provide insight and guidance to influence how the programme develops and delivers towards its target audience.

As part of Ageing Better in Birmingham BVSC have set up the Ageing Better Fund where communities can apply for up to £2000 to start new networks, run activities or events to help reduce isolation.

“We celebrate the skills, capabilities, strengths and experience of older people within communities. We will build on existing ‘community assets’ to increase community connections and access to local community led support.”

Working across five key geographic and thematic hubs and with multiple project partners we to aim to facilitate change in the way older people are considered by communities, inspiring and empowering citizens of all ages to participate, organise and influence activities to reduce isolation in later life.

Using a grass roots, asset-based approach, we aim to create a new movement for community action on ageing and isolation, empowering and enabling individuals and communities to participate in the project at all levels, helping to create sustainable change in communities based upon skills and strengths of individuals and groups. Increasing the amount of social and community connections that people have to reduce and prevent isolation in the future, share learning and best practice with other stakeholders to influence service design.

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