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Service providers from all sectors need to respond to a much more diverse older population.
Here are examples of how local Age UKs, working with partner organisations, are developing their work to provide culturally inclusive and accessible activities and services for older people from black and minority ethnic (BME) communities:
The Access for BAME Elders project provides a person centred planning service for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic older people. Person centred planning gives BAME elders and their supporters the opportunity to explore what matters to them. It aims to create a common language for them to express these wishes to those around them, including health and social care professionals.
‘I enjoyed it, it helped me to tell my story and have a report ready to hand for any social worker or doctor’ (BAME elder)
BAME elders co-produce a person centred plan focussing on where they are now, where they want to be and what support is needed to get there. Volunteers work with an elder for a 12-week period; issues addressed can range from developing a healthier lifestyle to improving social contact and support to access services.
The Moneywise project provides benefits, money and housing advice in Somali and Bengali. Age UK Camden also runs Somalia coffee mornings and ten week computer sessions in Somalian. To find out more call the duty advice line on 020 7837 3777.
This project is in partnership with the Greater London Forum for Older people. It has involved various events throughout the year, including a discussion forum and information sharing session on Wills and Probate, focussing on Wills for people from the Muslim community. A discussion forum on ‘Local Authority Budget Cuts and how they affect you’, was also held with the Golden Age Club in Brixton - a mixed group of older people from a range of ethnic minorities.
For more information contact: George Clerk, Age UK London on 020 7091 2595, firstname.lastname@example.org
Surrey Minority Ethnic Forum (SMEF), in partnership with Age UK Surrey, is an independent forum set up to raise awareness of the diverse range of BME communities in Surrey. The focus is on identifying the specific issues facing older people from BME communities. A 50+ event brought together over 120 older people to discuss key issues. SMEF and Age UK Surrey are planning a joint programme of work to tackle some of the priority issues. Read the report ‘The Needs of Minority Ethnic Older People in Surrey’ and find out more on the SMEF website
For more information email email@example.com
AULSR provides services including a Leicester city BME Elders Forum which aims to maintain and improve the quality of life of BME elders through representation and engagement. The Forum took part in the consultation about the changed role of the local Health Watch, and is a member of the ‘Speak Out Network’ supported by the Care Quality Commission. Recent topics discussed at the Forum’s meetings include an awareness-raising session by the British Lung Foundation. A range of services are provided from Catherine House – a vibrant multi-cultural resource centre. These include: a Gujarati Day Care service, a Punjabi Day Care Service, a Muslim elders lunch club, and a lunch club for a mixed group of Asian elders. Find out more on Age UK’s Leicester, Shire & Rutland website
Apna Ghar Day Care Centre provides for physically or mentally frail older people from BME communities who require intensive day care. It provides adapted transport to the centre, personal care, and a range of therapeutic and social activities based on a personalised support and outcomes plan. This is the only provider of specialised care services to the BME community locally. Find out more by visiting Age UK’s Blackburn with Darwen website
For further information please email Age UK Blackburn with Darwen on firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01254 266 620.
Mary Seacole Court Day Centre provides an early intervention service to slow down the deterioration of the health and wellbeing of mainly, (but not exclusively), African and Caribbean older people. It provides a social environment with the promotion of independence and dignity embedded in its practices.The staff support the service users in making decisions that will shape their own service and encourage using dance, music, exercise, holistic treatments, arts/crafts and computer technology to share culture and experiences. There are a variety of activities planned for Black History Month at Mary Seacole Court, including a night of Jamaican comedy and poetry.To find out more contact: Tim Shelton, MSC Project Coordinator: email@example.com
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