If the Coronavirus crisis has taught us anything, it’s that radical change is needed in the way we look after the elderly in this country.
Age Space is launching a #Charterforchange – a comprehensive action plan to create fundamental changes to how we care for and support our elderly parents, relatives, friends and neighbours in the future. We would like to hear YOUR ideas too and invite you to join our #Charterforchange campaign.
The care sector and caring as a career has been under-resourced and under-valued for decades. An estimated 7 million unpaid family members, neighbours and friends care for elderly relatives across the UK. These extraordinary people, through their superhuman efforts, day after day, save the Government millions of pounds – so why are they given so little support or credit?
During the Coronavirus pandemic and the lockdown we have all protected our elderly and vulnerable through community-led support, care packages and social distancing companionship. The true value of our care homes and the care sector have finally started to be recognised. Let’s build on this – and make sure that they are appreciated and fully supported, too.
No idea is too big or too small, too silly or insignificant. Sometimes it’s the small things that make all the difference.
- What would make your life caring for an elderly relative or friend easier?
For example;- continued silver hour and priority online slots available in all major retail outlets for older people/carers.
- What barriers are there to care?
For example;- easy access to information signposting between health, social and voluntary sector services.
We will build your ideas into our #Charterforchange and strive to work with a range of experts and public bodies to amplify our voice and create a positive, healthy and happy future for our ageing population whatever their circumstances.
Let’s not waste this opportunity – the time for change is now!
Our three main objectives; –
- Planning for later life; Improve access to resources and information to help families better prepare and plan for care for older relatives living longer, and with more complex health needs. A toolkit of everything you need to manage the care conversation from easy Will writing and power of attorney to how to organise finance and access professional care.
- Make better use of technology to improve conversations between families and elderly care providers. Enabling families to feel more connected with their loved ones being cared for remotely with regular and standardised reporting mechanisms.
- Fight for flexible working which allows employees to have increased carers rights at work on a par with maternity/paternity leave.
Age Space will work with other National organisations and public bodies to call on Government and society at large to drive the positive changes needed to improve the lives of the elderly, their family and carers.
We would like to see ……..
- The Government publish its Green Paper on the future of adult social care and how it might be funded.
- A national debate about the future of our ageing population, care and funding.
- The establishment of an Independent body to oversee the planning and delivery of future care needs collaborating with central government, local authorities and care sector providers. This body should be led by a Care Tsar.
- A national campaign to make a career in the care sector better respected and resourced. Drive up training, standards and pay. Engaging with schools, universities and colleges to include care qualifications on the syllabus.
- Enshrining care for the elderly into our national school and college syllabus to build stronger and more resilient links between young people and the elderly.
- To harness the community response to COVID 19 and encourage the continuation of informal local shielding networks for older people.
- Much earlier and co-ordinated approaches to health, wellbeing and independent living.
- Easier and less expensive access to smart home technology – to enable people to live better at home with local/right support.
- Co-ordinate funding and support for charities and others on the ground to reduce duplication and fill gaps.
- Fight loneliness with smart thinking: re-think later life options such as multi-generational family living (mortgages, building); combining working and caring; creating vibrant retirement communities with on-site care as standard.
Sign up to join our #charterforchange here. Send us your ideas and we will compile all the suggestions and publish them here on the website and use them in our campaign.
Charter for Change
Founder & Director of Age Space