What is an Older People's Champion?
An Older People’s Champion is an ambassadorial role, held by an elected Councillor.
Their job is to be a link between the council and older people in the local area and to amplify the voices of older people within the council chamber.
Age Scotland and SOPA have produced a role descriptor for the role which you can find below, or download by clicking here.
Different councils might choose to modify the role slightly based on local needs, but the basic principles should be the same across Scotland.
An Older People’s Champion is a Councillor who will work to ensure that older people’s voices are heard - giving older people the opportunity to live independent lives and supporting them to remain involved in their community.
Champions will help shape priorities and work with older people themselves, Council colleagues and partners from the public, voluntary and independent sectors to identify issues which effect people locally. This will include collecting and feeding back on older people’s concerns to wider Council, leading Council campaigns on older people’s issues and communicating Council policy back to the community and other partners.
Where appropriate the individual will represent the Council in matters relating to older people, for example:
- Launching new initiatives
- Participating in focus groups
- Attending local and national meetings
- Any other activities relevant to the older people’s agenda
The appointee may be in the political administration or in opposition parties. The role is apolitical, with a focus on representing the voices of older people from across the local area. We do not anticipate there to be any budgetary implications attached to the role.
Experience of the issues faced by older people would be beneficial but the ability to empathise and represent the views of others is more important. The Champion does not need to be an older person themselves.