Dying matters is a website for those in the final months of their lives, their families, friends and carers. Their aim is to help to support people to be able to die as they wish.
As well as practical information on what to do when someone dies, it also has an online forum where people can post about their experiences of death and their concerns.
Dying Matters currently have over 30,000 members talking about dying.
For more information see: http://help.dyingmatters.org/
Life Reimagined is a web platform that helps people to re-evaluate their skills and pursue new ambitions. It brings together a whole range of experts in personal development, ageing and transitions to guide positive life changes from new employment opportunities to improving one’s health.
It does this through a personalised guidance system that involves six practices that help to guide personal change;
- Reflecting on the stage that you are currently at in your life and your feelings about it
- Connecting with others to share your ideas of change and learn their perspectives and experiences
- Exploring thinking honestly about the road you could take in life
- Choosing the direction you wish to take
- Repacking ones priorities in order to take the steps necessary to achieve this new direction
- Acting on the steps needed for action
For more information see: http://lifereimagined.aarp.org/how-it-works
For a video on their work see; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kT7eTMW1EDE
Vintage communities bring people together to find local solutions to local problems.
Staff at Vintage Communities work intensively in small areas (usually a ward or smaller) for 6-9 months. They gather enthusiasts, older people, local representatives of clubs and societies together, and act as a facilitator to help the group map their local assets and problems. Older people in the group then take the lead on designing and delivering new initiatives to improve their community.
The first Vintage Community was set up in Balham in 2011 where the group has hosted a street party and an event where neighbours show what they have to offer to others for example cooking, dog walking and teaching a foreign language.
The ultimate goal is for the community group itself to function independently, and so in time staff at Vintage Communities move on to support another community to get started.
For more information see:
For a video detailing their work in Balham;
Death café (which is part of the impermanence group of projects surrounding death and dying) founded in 2011 is a place for people to eat, drink and discuss anything they like surrounding death and dying.
They hold both face to face groups and have also started trialling online chat groups.
So far around 1,000 people have attended Death Café’s in England, Wales, the U.S., Canada, Australia and Italy.
The Death Café’s objective is “To increase awareness of death with a view to helping people make the most of their (finite) lives”.
For further information about your nearest Death Café see:
The Legacy Centre is an online web platform to help people talk about later life, death and legacy, allowing people to prepare for end of life.
The website is in its infancy at the moment, but it plans to host people’s legacies though film and videos, and provide tips and tools for families wanting to prepare for the end of life and create products (like home movies and charting why certain items are special to an older person) for future generations to access.
The Legacy Centre are currently looking for partners and backers to prototype the idea. For more information see:
Spots of Time have a mission to make it easier for people to put their spare ‘spots of time’ to good use in their communities through making it easy for others to share their time and talents with care home residents.
People can get involved by picking from a large range of activities that they can host at their local care homes. Activities such as: sharing your favourite mix tape, gardening tips, learning skills from residents or teaching crafts such as knitting, painting, and collage.
They also provide an opportunity for drama groups to rehearse, for beauticians in training to practice, to share writing or poetry and even to bring your own pet along to meet the residents!
For more information see:
The wisdom bank provides a platform for people approaching retirement to share their skills and insights with those that need their advice.
The site has three main feature:
- Find-allows people to find others who may be able to help through their personal experiences you can search based on; wisdom that the person wishes to share, profession, skills and interests even personality traits.
- Share-offers a platform to share the transferable skills an individual has to offer such as how to care for an older relative as you age.
- Connect- to link with others to capitalise on the ‘wealth of unused wisdom out there’ such as Doris who asked for interviewing hints and tips and received a wealth of comments in return from experienced professionals.
Results from a large collaborative pilot involving 90 people from 10 countries illustrate the importance and appeal of wisdom bank. Details of these results can be found here
For more information see: http://www.wisdombank.org.uk/
A video describing the Wisdom bank and how it can benefit you can be found here
Baking with Friends is a new idea to pair older people who are alone or who experience loneliness but have a love for baking with younger people who want to learn to bake things from scratch.
In return, the younger people who are keen to try volunteering – some, for the first time – will inspire older people about the transforming effect of technology and the internet. Through sharing, meeting (and eating!) the project aims to reduce isolation in older people and bridge both the generational and digital divides.
The project is the brainchild of UK Online who run more than 3800 community-based UK Online Centres around the country helping people get started with computers and the internet. It is backed by Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) via the Skills Funding Agency (SFA).
For more information: http://www.ukonlinecentres.com/
Intergen creates opportunities for older people to work with young people in schools. Older volunteers go into schools to help with reading, specific skills and classes with the aim of improving aspirations and attainment of the children they are mentoring.
Initially based in Sale, there are now clusters in Stockport, Tyldesley, Chorleton and Tower Hamlets.
To make it all happen Intergen recruits and appoints an older person to be the coordinator for the cluster of three schools. Co-ordinators are responsible for recruiting older people living locally to become volunteers in the Intergen schools, organising a social event and a business meeting once a term.
The programme is unusual in that independent academic evaluation has been done since 2000, with the latest reports by Manchester Metropolitan University available online.
For more information see: http://www.intergen.org.uk/