Our first learning update focused on finding older people to take part in your project. This month builds on this learning further by looking at ways to make your project more accessible and inclusive.
We recommend reflecting on who is engaging with your project and, most importantly, who is not. What can you do to break down the barriers for those who are currently not engaging? It is likely that many of these barriers also contribute to experiences of loneliness and isolation, which is why we believe that taking steps to make your project more accessible and inclusive can really help with engaging the most lonely and isolated older people within society. Hopefully our learning provides you with a useful starting point for thinking about this.
Central to this learning is a willingness to ask. Don't be afraid to ask individuals how they would like to be communicated with or whether they have any support needs they would like you to know about. Going one step further, it is also important to build this willingness to ask into the structure of your project. By involving a diverse range of older people in the design and delivery of your project, it helps to ensure that you take different backgrounds and life experiences into consideration.
To help our delivery partners involve everyone within the community, we will be running a series of training workshops. This training is available to staff and volunteers within BAB-funded projects, and the first three areas of focus will be hearing loss, substance misuse and sight/dual sensory loss. See more information here.
Lastly, to help you reflect on learning we've developed a question bank to get your team discussions started.
BAB Programme Manager Carly Urbanski
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