Three organisations get lottery funding to help older people

Nesta, The Age of No Retirement and the Design Council have received shares of £9.5m from the Big Lottery Fund to support projects designed to help older people lead better lives

The Big Lottery Fund has awarded grants totalling more than £9.5m to three organisations to develop innovative ways of helping older people.

Nesta, the social enterprise The Age of No Retirement and the Design Council have all received a share of the funding, which will support projects designed to help older people lead healthier and more fulfilling lives.

Nesta will receive £5.5m over the next five years for eight ideas designed to mobilise people to tackle the problems of an ageing society.

This includes local user-led groups to support people affected by strokes or respiratory conditions, an app that allows off-duty medical professionals to respond to life-threatening medical emergencies and a scheme to recruit volunteers to get fit while reducing isolation for local older people.

The Design Council will receive £3.7m over three years that will bring together older people, social innovators and health and care service commissioners to improve quality of life among the elderly.

The programme will initially be based in south-west England and partners in the project include UnLtd, the South West Academic Health Science Network and the Centre for Ageing Better.

The Age of No Retirement will receive almost £500,000 over 18 months to bring together business, government, the media and the public to share and implement ideas on how older people can live more fulfilling lives. This will be supported by an online crowdsourcing platform that will be launched on 19 May.

The three projects applied through the Big Lottery Fund’s UK Accelerating Ideas funding approach – according to the Big Lottery Fund’s website, this "aims to get great ideas and practice more widely shared and adopted across the UK".

Dawn Austwick, chief executive of the Big Lottery Fund, said: "These projects challenge existing notions of how we support older people. By involving them in designing new services and technologies, we are putting them in the driving seat and enabling them to reap the most benefit. This gives people a greater stake in their lives and communities, and delivers more personalised and sustainable approaches to health and social care."

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