Bring your community together & help those over 50 to overcome isolation

Celebrating over 50s in Birmingham

Celebrating over 50s in Birmingham
A fantastic FREE event celebrating Birmingham's over 50s taking place on 29 March at Austin Court in Birmingham. Bollywood dancing, art, food and more!    Our annual "Spring Forward" event for people over 50 in Birmingham is this year focussing on making connections and staying positive in later life.  Spring Forward has been organised by Groundwork West Midlands in partnership with Birmingham Voluntary Service Council (BVSC), and will take place from 10am on Friday, March 29, at Austin Court on Cambridge Street in Birmingham. Samantha Julius, Community Project Coordinator at Groundwork West Midlands, leads on supporting the group of older people who have helped organise the event. She said:   ”It’s important to celebrate the contributions people over 50 make to Birmingham, so that we can be proud of the community we live in. By working together, we have come up with an interactive and fun event with lots of opportunities to ......

Communities Representative needed for Birmingham City Partnership Board

Communities Representative needed for Birmingham City Partnership Board
Birmingham City Partnership Board – Communities Representative The Birmingham City Partnership Board is seeking to recruit a Communities Representative to provide a communities-based perspective on board matters, and to contribute to the board’s agenda based on this perspective. The role will work in close partnership with the Voluntary Sector Representative to provide a strong and coordinated civil society input to board business.   About the Birmingham City Partnership Board The Birmingham City Partnership Board was established in September 2018 to drive positive change collectively for the city of Birmingham. Its intention is to provide a regular way for representatives of different sectors to build trust between themselves and to collaborate in addressing relevant strategic opportunities, with a view to helping the city move towards a more agile and distributed leadership approach. For further information about the role, please see the role description HERE.   To express an interest, please submit eith......

How to make friends after 50.

How to make friends after 50.
Making friends as adults is not as easy as when you're younger. Making friends when you're over 50, perhaps retired - can be even trickier. No longer having the daily rythm of activities, or a space where we are put together with people in our community through classes at school, or a work place, can make it increasingly difficult to make friends in later life.  However, it is never too late to meet new people, and indeed make new friends in life! One of the best places to start is with yourself. Think about what you enjoy doing and start from there. Often, when we have not had a chance to enjoy ourselves for some time, we loose confidence in our ability to do things, and in ourselves. We can forget what makes us really happy. If you enjoy gardening, start with that. Start going outside, or plant indoors. If it......

Ex-bobby still on the beat

Ex-bobby still on the beat
Baughan House movers and shakers build great connections in the Tyburn community One of the groups funded by Ageing Better in Birmingham is a sitting exercise group which takes place at Baughan House, a sheltered accommodation complex in Pype Hayes, north Birmingham. The class has been going for the past 5 months and is run by Janine Smith, from Positive Movers, an ex-police officer who really keeps the group members on their toes as she encourages them to join in with lots of different types of sitting exercise, from scarf waving and playing maracas, to having fun with hoops! “Sometimes, coming to a group like this is the only contact older people have with others in their neighbourhood” said Laura Grigg, Network Enabler from the Ageing Better Tyburn Hub.   “Coming along every week means that people inevitably have a chance to make friends – whereas before, they were just strangers” The clas......

Pink Sou’westers visit a Byzantine church and celebrate their 10th Anniversary

Pink Sou’westers visit a Byzantine church and celebrate their 10th Anniversary
Pink Sou’westers are a group of LGBT people who offer affordable, accessible and inclusive events for all ages and for people from all over the Midlands. Like many other groups in Birmingham, Pink Sou’westers have benefitted from funding provided by the Ageing Better in Birmingham programme.   Their latest outing was to the Church of the Holy Prince Lazar, in Bournville, a stunning Serbian Orthodox church that was built by political refugees from Yugoslavia on land purchased from the Cadbury family in 1968. As we listened to the interesting talk about the church and how all the elaborate wall paintings and murals were completed by just one man over a period of 7 years, it was clear that these sort of outings are really enjoyable for all members.  Bob, 71, from Hockley explains how Pink Sou’westers offers a variety of trips and visits, typically every month. He said, “They always try to make......

Celebrating the importance of community and the amazing people of Sparkbrook

We joined the Ageing Better Sparkbrook Hub in celebrating Christmas and the people who has made a huge impact in tackling loneliness and isolation in the local area. Attending the event, and listening to Nigel Brookhouse, CEO of Narthex Sparkhill, one of the organisations behind the Sparkbrook Hub, it was clear that there was much cause for celebration, apart from just the Christmas festivities! Emphasising the massive importance of community and paying tribute to the amazing strengths of the Sparkbrook local people, Nigel said “The Ageing Better programme has helped the Sparkbrook Hub to support 50 individual citizens groups, engaging with 1,250 people in the area.” He added; “This has made a real difference to the local community by tackling loneliness faced by those who have been most isolated”. Nita and Stephen, who provide local citizens with support, explained more about the broad range of Ageing Better activities taking place across Sparkbr......

From Jamaica to Birmingham

From Jamaica to Birmingham
Millicent Gobbinsingh, 66, of Newtown, Birmingham, tells us more about her experiences of coming to England, and about taking part in the Ageing Better in Birmingham programme.   Millie was born in Port Antonio, Jamaica. When her parents decided to seek a better future for the family, they left the Caribbean island for Britain. Millie was 13 when she joined them in Birmingham. Speaking of her experience she says it was difficult, and “bloody cold!” She started school in September that year and in the first week the head master called her parents in following an incident. It had been snowing all day, and Millie, not owning a proper coat to defend against the British weather, had been hiding under a number of coats in the cloakroom, refusing to go outdoors. “I’m not going out there!” she had shouted. Asking how she felt about moving to the UK, she says she had been ......

A neighbourly Xmas in Birmingham

A neighbourly Xmas in Birmingham
Every Christmas there are stories around older people and how you can get involved to help a lonely elderly person by volunteering. Usually this means befriending, either by phone or in person. Whilst having a volunteer come round for a cup of tea and a natter can be great - even life-changing for some people – befriending relies on referrals and organisations to establish these connections. And if visits are in person, they require a volunteer who lives within relatively easy reach of the older person’s home.   WHAT THE RESEARCH TELLS US In a UK-wide study of more than 2,000 people in August 2016, data collected by One Poll showed that feeling lonely where you live is not just an older person’s issue. Almost 30% of respondents aged 18-34 admitted to feeling isolated, compared to 14% of those aged over 55. Further data from a private social network called Nextdoor shows......

The street was our kingdom, our safety net

The street was our kingdom, our safety net
As we approach Ageing Together Week 2019, Nina, one of our Age of Experience members with extensive involvement in the Ageing Better in Birmingham programme, shares her experience of growing up in Birmingham. Read her story below.    "Growing up in the 1960s and 70s was great. I would play with my first ever best friend, Clare, and her brother Joe. Most of our time was spent across the road on the factory steps; we would take our mothers’ sheets and tie them round the rails to make ‘houses’. One year my mother bought me a Silver Cross pram for Christmas from the antiques shop across the way. I don’t know how many times that pram went up and down the street with dolls (and friends!) in it. Life was carefree. I would go to the sweet shop to get my dad’s cigarettes and the owner always let me choose a penny swe......

Connect Sparkbrook

Connect Sparkbrook
Not long ago, a new project called Connect Sparkbrook, launched in Sparkbrook. It’s part of the Ageing Better in Birmingham programme and will be delivered by The Muath Trust. With a focus on Sparkbrook as an area, it aims to improve connectivity and reduce isolation for people over 50. The project will develop local people’s skills, knowledge and understanding of local voluntary and community organisations and community groups and individuals. Mumtaz Shah, of The Muath Trust, is the Project Co-ordinator for Connect Sparkbrook and responsible for the day to day delivery. Having extensive experience in working within the Community Development Sector, Mumtaz understands the necessity for a joint-approach in this area. He said: “I’m very excited about this new role. The project has a lot of potential to improve connectivity and combat social isolation for those over 50 in Sparkbrook. There are several organisations that are doing excellent community development and enga......

Proud Baggies launch the 1968 Club - A campaign to help reduce loneliness amongst the older LGBT+ population

Proud Baggies launch the 1968 Club - A campaign to help reduce loneliness amongst the older LGBT+ population
Proud Baggies, West Bromwich Albion’s official Supporter Group for LGBT+ fans has launched a campaign in support of reducing social isolation amongst LGBT+ elders. In association with Ageing Better Birmingham and with support from Birmingham LGBT’s Ageing with Pride programme, The ‘1968 Club’ will offer free tickets, travel and refreshments at all WBA home games throughout the season for LGBT+ people over 50 who find themselves isolated from the community. Piero Zizzi, Proud Baggies founder says “we have a unique opportunity to support older and socially isolated LGBT+ people who otherwise would not engage with other LGBT+ people, by offering a safe environment to attend football matches accompanied by members of our group. The 1968 Club is a fitting title since to be eligible you have to have been born before we won our 5th and most memorable FA Cup”. Research shows that older LGBT+ people are especially vulnerable to loneliness a......

Job advert: Community Project Coordinator

Job advert: Community Project Coordinator
Community Project Coordinator Salary: £24,176 per annum37 hours per week Based in Tipton with regular travel across the West Midlands region This job role is part funded by the National Lottery, through the Heritage Lottery Fund. The Heritage Lottery Fund invests money to help people across the UK explore, enjoy and protect the heritage they care about. Groundwork West Midlands are looking for an enthusiastic Community Project Coordinator to take a leading role in 2 exciting projects; Every Step of The Way and Kick the Dust: Future Proof Parks. The post holder will be responsible for all aspects of their projects, from planning and delivery to management and reporting. You will need to have a broad understanding of, and interest in, community and health and wellbeing, along with effective administrative and organisational skills and an ability to prioritise your own work programme. Experience building capacity and resilience of volunteers is essential, ......

Ageing Better in Birmingham Opportunity – quotes requested to deliver the Walking Maps project (Part of Tyburn Local Action Plan)

Ageing Better in Birmingham Opportunity – quotes requested to deliver the Walking Maps project (Part of Tyburn Local Action Plan)

 

Ageing Better in Birmingham is requesting quotations for the provision of the Walking Maps project, which is part of the Tyburn Local Action Plan. The deadline for the submission of quotations is Monday 3rd December 2018 at 5pm.

Further information regarding this opportunity can be found within the Brief for the project which can be accessed here

The Tyburn Local Action Plan can be accessed here for further background information.

Ageing Better in Birmingham Request for Quotation opportunity – Sitting Service (Older Carers Local Action Plan)

Ageing Better in Birmingham Request for Quotation opportunity – Sitting Service (Older Carers Local Action Plan)

Ageing Better in Birmingham is requesting quotations for the provision of the Sitting Service project within the Older Carers Local Action Plan. Further information on our Priority Area Local Action Plans can be found on our website at https://www.ageingbetterinbirmingham.co.uk/latest-news/update-priority-area-local-action-plans

More information in regards to this opportunity can be found on our e-Tendering portal In-Tend https://in-tendhost.co.uk/bvsc and submissions will be managed through this system.

The opportunity is now live and the deadline for Bidder's Response is Wednesday 19th December 2018, 12pm noon.

Get involved with Ageing Together Week 2019!

Get involved with Ageing Together Week 2019!
  Ageing Together Week takes place across Birmingham from Monday, January 21 to Sunday, January 27, 2019 to raise awareness of isolation and spread the message that people do not need to be alone. Citizens, community groups and organisations are encouraged to get involved.   By 2020, in Birmingham, almost 57,000 people aged 65 plus will be living alone. Nationally, the number of people who report feeling lonely has more than doubled since 1980. Human company is vital to our happiness. Without it, we are more likely to experience a decline in physical and mental wellbeing. Recent studies demonstrate links with stress, lower self-esteem, disturbed sleep, cardiovascular disease, dementia and other mental health outcomes. Loneliness is said to have the same effect on a person’s health, equivalent to that of smoking or alcoholism, and more severe than not exercising or obesity. Communities up and down the country are making a di......

Birmingham Wellbeing Portal Making a Big Difference

Birmingham Wellbeing Portal Making a Big Difference

Wellbeing Portal launched to support Birmingham citizens   Birmingham residents who are looking for local activities, support and services that encourage wellbeing and an active and healthy lifestyle can now search a new online directory called Route2Wellbeing that describes over 1,500 local, community-based services and activities.   This new initiative is already “making a big difference” to Birmingham citizens. The Route2Wellbeing Birmingham portal is the ultimate guide to services, activities and support provided by the city’s voluntary and community sector. From diet and exercise to personal help with bereavement, debt advice or immigration; from support for carers to employability or mediation services – all of these things play a part in our physical and mental wellbeing. Route2Wellbeing Birmingham has been developed by Birmingham Voluntary Service Council (BVSC) and Sandwell Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) with funding from Sandwell and West Birmingham Clinical Commissioning Group. Designed from scratch for ease of use, the por......

Ageing Better in Birmingham Request for Quotation – Care and Repair Scheme (Tyburn Local Action Plan)

Ageing Better in Birmingham Request for Quotation – Care and Repair Scheme (Tyburn Local Action Plan)

Ageing Better in Birmingham is requesting quotations for the provision of Care and Repair Scheme; a Project within the Tyburn Local Action Plan. Further information on our Priority Area Local Action Plans can be found on our website at https://www.ageingbetterinbirmingham.co.uk/latest-news/update-priority-area-local-action-plans

More information in regards to this opportunity can be found on our e-Tendering portal In-Tend (click here), and submissions will be managed through this system.

The opportunity is now live and the deadline for Bidder's Response is Friday 30th November 2018, 12pm noon.

Circus skills in Edgbaston

Circus skills in Edgbaston
DEMCAF– Helping carers and the Dementia sufferers they care for, to be less isolated and more involved with the local community Demcaf are an Ageing Better in Birmingham group who meet on the first Tuesday of every month at St Georges church, Edgbaston to provide a support network, activities and socialising to people over 50 with Dementia, and their Carers. What struck us about this group was that it was not just carers and the cared-for who came along, but also a large number of volunteers - people in the community and members of the church who are interested in the wellbeing of others and who want to lend a hand and make a difference to the lives of people in this very practical way. We spoke with Jenny Astley, aged 78 from Selly Oak, Birmingham. For the past 12 months, Jenny has been coming to Demcaf with her husband David, w......

Addressing older people's isolation in Sparkbrook

Addressing older people's isolation in Sparkbrook
A new exciting project is starting in Sparkbrook, Birmingham. This is a call for partners to come forward and engage with the project.  This project, as with the development of the Ageing Better Hub, recognises that other organisations, not engaged with the Collective, deliver services for and to older people. We have identified some of these who will become partners in the development of activities and we will seek to engage others as partners or participants within this programme as it progresses. The programme aims to develop skills and processes in all organisations. We acknowledge that groups will be at different levels of progress and skills and this project will seek to support the sharing of skills and the progress of support offered by 'emerging and embryonic' groups, enabling them to address the issue of isolation in older people within the Ward.' Deadline for quotes is Friday 26 October. Please visit http://www.muathtrust.org/AgeingBetter.aspx for......

New project aimed at making Tyburn an 'age-friendly' neighbourhood

New project aimed at making Tyburn an 'age-friendly' neighbourhood
Sustrans is delivering Age Friendly Tyburn, a project aimed at increasing an ‘age-friendly’ neighbourhood and reducing social isolation by creating a positive long-term improvement of the physical environment in the Tyburn Ward. This project is funded by BVSC and is part of the Ageing Better in Birmingham programme. It will run until June 2020.   What is the project about? Sustrans will be working to support people in Tyburn to identify aspects of the urban environment that make travel and connectivity to the community difficult, such as crossing points, links between neighbourhoods and access to green spaces. An initial audit of the area will lead to developing and trialling ideas that positively enhance their neighbourhood environment to make it Age-Friendly and make access for over 50s easier. The trials will initially be low cost and short term – but with the view to using them as evidence to establish lasting positive chang......