People come together in Sheffield to celebrate ‘Ageing Better’ with National Lottery funding
People aged over 50 came together in Sheffield this week to celebrate ‘Ageing Better’, thanks to a multi-million pound investment by The National Lottery Community Fund, the largest funder of community activity in the UK.
150 people involved in the Ageing Better programme travelled far and wide from across 14 areas of England to spend two days (Tuesday 9 July and Wednesday 10 July) at Sheffield City Hall where they shared their skills, stories and experiences of growing older. This was the first national event of its kind for the £78 million National Lottery funded programme, where Ageing Better participants designed and delivered the activities and workshops.
Ageing Better develops creative ways for people aged over 50 to be actively involved in their local communities, with the aim to combat social isolation and loneliness. It is one of five major programmes set up by The National Lottery Community Fund to test and learn from new approaches to designing services which aim to make people’s lives healthier and happier.
People who have benefited from Ageing Better, including staff and volunteers, learnt about how the programme has helped tackle loneliness by empowering older people to challenge stereotypes, campaign about important issues and set up activities they would like to see in their communities. There were also walking tours of Sheffield to showcase a city known for its steel, snooker and theatres.
Joanne Stevenson from Ageing Better Middlesbrough, who attended the event, said: “It was wonderful to see how open and friendly people are across the different programmes. The event was really a great way to celebrate all the work we’ve been doing and share ideas on the future.”
Sophy Proctor, Head of Funding for Ageing Better at The National Lottery Community Fund, said: “This was a fantastic opportunity to hear directly from people who’ve participated in the Ageing Better programme. We learnt how thanks to National Lottery players, over 100,000 people aged over 50 have been sparking friendships, conversations and connections that are leading to valuable evidence to help decrease loneliness and isolation.”
Juliann Hall, Director of Care Health & Wellbeing at South Yorkshire Housing Association and Chair of Age Better in Sheffield, which hosted the event, said: “It was a real honour for the Age Better in Sheffield programme to welcome more than 150 people to our wonderful city. Over the course of the two days we heard about all the great activities, services and groups that are being hosted by older people from across the country to help people to connect with others and reduce their feelings of isolation and loneliness. We are thankful to The National Lottery Community Fund for giving us the opportunity to co-produce an event of this scale and to all the participants for their continued passion and enthusiasm.”
The National Lottery Community Fund distributes money raised by National Lottery players for good causes. Last year it awarded over £127 million to projects across the UK supporting older people. To find out more visit www.TNLCommunityFund.org.uk
- Date published