Helping People Over 50 Get the Services They Want

(Last Updated On: July 23, 2018)

Should people over 50 get the services that they want, rather than what “we” think they need?

Ageing Well Torbay think that people know best what they need and that they should be at the centre of any new services developed.

During their ‘Food for Thought’ sessions last year, many people over 50 identified themselves as being an ‘untapped resource’ and more able to support their peers (with low level DIY, gardening, shopping, household chores, neighbourly driving) to live inter-dependently.

However they recognised that there were barriers to helping or providing this natural support, such as the potential distrust or suspicion people fear their offers of support will be met with. Also many were worried about the possible ‘red-tape’ involved, such as the need for CRB checks and/or insurance, and some believed independence and pride might make people reluctant or embarrassed to even ask for or accept support.

Could you help Ageing Well design a collaborative “Stay put – Peer Support” project?

‘You don’t need to be a designer,’ they say, ‘you just need to bring your experience, knowledge and understanding of what would enable people over 50 to remain at home, and stay where they have been living for longer.  With you and interested organisations, we want to co-design a new ‘Peer Support – Stay Put’ project.’

They  are looking for collaboration between people over 50 and interested organisations, particularly those who either work with, provide or have experience of providing:

  • Home Support services– such as befriending, shopping, and domestic tasks
  • Gardening and DIY services
  • Agencies using innovative ways to attract and support volunteers, including those over 50 into the diverse range of volunteer options and choices
  • Home Care Support services
  • Volunteer driving schemes
  • Agencies who are exploring inter-generational support and training opportunities

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If you’re interested, they add, please come to as many of the AWT co-design workshops as you can, at Central Church, Torquay, 10.15-4.00pm on 2nd, 3rd and 9th August 2018. All travel and carers’ expenses will be paid
To book a place or find out more, call Sue McDermott on 01803 212638, or email, or use the following link to book online, via Eventbrite: Jope


Apart from five years studying in Oxford I’ve lived most of my life in London where for many years I was Head of English in a prestigious girls’ school, but since taking early retirement and heading West to be nearer to my two daughters - settling in Torbay with my wife, Anna, in 2011 - I’ve worked in the voluntary sector. I took on the role of Service Provider, for example, promoting the Red Cross Torbay Navigators Project, while now I’m a Trustee and part of the Media Team for our local Healthwatch. I’m a governor at Torquay Academy, too, giving me the chance to stay up to date with what’s happening in the world of education. Other interests, aside from friends and family, include art and art history, reading - from contemporary fiction and poetry to Elizabethan/Jacobean literature - history, politics, cooking, walking, and music, in particular Bob Dylan, the blues, and early Elvis. I love writing, too, with one novel published so far – Elvis in Wonderland – and another, Who’s There?, that still needs plenty of work!