Written by Adam Rees, BAB Director
This month we have seen the last of our pilot projects being completed. Bristol Ageing Better funded 24 pilot projects over the last year. The aim was to trial new ideas and exploring organisational solutions to reducing social isolation and loneliness.
Our pilots have included Group Work and Peer Support activities, Wellbeing Services and Intergenerational projects. Each of these projects aimed to reduce the isolation and loneliness of individuals through a specific type of activity.
Though the amount of funding for the pilots was relatively small (ranging from £5,000 to £15,000), there have been excellent examples of delivery partners finding creative solutions to the challenges that became apparent during the course of their projects. Although there have been some projects that have not recruited enough older people or have not met their goals for a number of reasons.
Whether the projects have been successful or not, the learning that we have got from all of these projects will be vital when we are deciding what to commission next…
We are currently collecting all of the learning from the 24 pilots as well as from other BAB projects and other work across the city. We are looking to develop models that will run over the next two years and seek to establish successful approaches to reducing isolation and loneliness.
Once we have collated this information and started to identify common themes and ideas that have the potential to deliver, we will be presenting these to our Older People Steering group. Our Steering group members will then be able to review all of the information and help us to refine these projects to a point where we can release Invitations to Tender on October 1st.
When we announced these further projects, we also hope to offer sessions for potential bidders in order to provide further information and to continue to encourage collaboration across the bids. This is the last large commissioning for the BAB programme and we are keen to ensure that these projects will contribute to the programme as well as addressing existing gaps in services for older people.
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