The Isle of Wight is already a place where many older people play an active part in their community, and where many are able to access most of the services and amenities they need.
However, there are also large numbers of older people who struggle to live the life they would wish, sometimes feeling lonely and isolated and who at times can’t get out and do what they want to do.
As part of Age Friendly Island this project is working with the World Health Organisation’s ‘Guide to Age Friendly Cities’ and has become the first rural area in the UK to become Age Friendly. Age UK Isle of Wight and Community Action IW are working to create an environment where the community is set up to help older people live safely, enjoy good health and stay locally involved.
The project uses the eight domains included in the ‘Guide to Age Friendly Cities’ to create an Age Friendly Island, which are:
- outdoor spaces and buildings
- social participation
- respect and social inclusion
- civic participation and employment
- communication and information
- community support and health services
In the past year the Age Friendly Island Strategic Project has been working on:
- Over 200 professionals have received Age Friendly Training from Bembridge Parish Council, Hampshire Police, HMP Service, IW Fire and Rescue Service, Southern Housing, Southern Vectis, Red Funnel and representatives from Pan Management Group, Pan Together and ERMC.
- Train the Trainer has been piloted with Southern Vectis, who are now rolling out this training to all drivers in the wider ‘Go South Coast’ company.
- 822 Isle be Safe and Well Visits have been carried out by IW Fire and Rescue Service.
- An Age Friendly Island Surgeries Toolkit and short film have been produced and is now being promoted nationally.
- Dementia Friendly Church Services are becoming established.
- Isle of Wight Against Scams (IWASP) Led by Trading Standards has been formed to addresses doorstep crime and scams within the home.
- Age Friendly Public Forums have been delivered every quarter and have been attended by over 163 people. Themes covered have included Age Friendly Surgeries, Health Care Redesign, Transport, Employment and Scams.
- More than 2,000 pupils from 23 different schools across the Island have been directly involved with Age Friendly Island, through assemblies, lessons and special events.
The Age Friendly Communities Project is part of the Age Friendly Island partnership funded by the National Lottery through the BIG Lottery fund. The aspiration of the 5-year programme is to make the Isle of Wight a truly great place to grow old, while also tackling social isolation.
The partnership includes organisations committed to building an Island that values, respects, and actively supports older people, with the voice of older residents at the heart. Encouraging older adults to take a more active role in their communities, and enabling their voices to be heard by services and organisations across the Island.
For more information on the Age Friendly Island programme please contact us on (01983) 525282 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.