Age UK West Cumbria - A History
Established initially as Age Concern Northwest Cumbria in 1993, Age UK West Cumbria is a local independent charitable company. It raises all its own funds through six local charity shops, a ‘one stop equipment shop to support independent living, contracts and grants to deliver particular services, donations and a range of fundraising activities. All monies are used locally to improve the lives of older people in Allerdale and Copeland.
The charity employs 37 staff and is supported by over 120 volunteers. It has its headquarters in Workington, but has community-based teams working across Allerdale and Copeland using a variety of community assets. These locality ‘hubs’ give people better access to information, services and activities in their neighbourhood, while improved understanding of local communities enables a more ready response to their needs.
Age UK West Cumbria provides a range of services to help people stay active, healthy, independent and involved in their communities. These include: information and advice, support to find the right services, help to claim benefits and deal with money issues, support to enable safe discharge from hospital, nail-cutting, disability living equipment advice and sales, Day Activities and groups, Hearing support services, Falls Prevention support Befriending, shopping services and loneliness prevention services. In addition to this we are involved in a number of intergenerational projects designed to support community cohesion. A majority of these services are provided free to clients through contracts and grants.
The charity also offers opportunities for people to socialise, take part in activities, develop new activities or use their skills and experience as volunteers to help make life better for others in the community. It works closely with local people to carry out research, campaign on issues of importance and influence local provision for older people.
Age UK West Cumbria works with many partners at local, regional and national level. At local level it has played a key role in the development of prevention approaches to Health and Social Care and been a pilot for a number of innovative national and regional initiatives. It is a brand partner of Age UK, the national charity and a member of the new Age England Association – combining its strengths with others to help address the challenges of an ageing population and bring about positive change.