PYCA’s Social Engagement Programme
PYCA’s Social Engagement Programme is a new service, funded by the Leicester Ageing Together partnership which is part of a Big Lottery funded programme aiming to address social isolation amongst people over the age of 50.
PYCA’s Social Engagement Programme will support older people who are isolated and suffering multiple deprivations, providing them with improved opportunities for the development of life skills, skills sharing and improved integration achieved through a programme of support, training, advice, counseling, guidance, and advocacy.
The proposal will tackle isolation and loneliness amongst older people by:
- Offering information, advice and guidance programme catering to individual needs and functioning as a drop-in service. From IAG sessions we will be able to ascertain the level of support that each participant needs. We will then offer appropriate training if required and also channel people into a range of social programmes and activities to meet their needs.
- Offering training in IT & social networking, enabling them to increase access to develop new networks. Social Networking will help older people who may have become isolated within their community, giving them a new way of communicating both locally and world-wide, putting them in touch with like-minded older people both in the UK and also with family members and friends world-wide.
- Helping to build bridges for older people across different communities by holding open days planned, themed on different aspects of learning, health and wellbeing.
- Recruiting volunteers (young & old) who will act as Community Champions to attract older people into the programme. Each Community Champion will be offered training in community development (NOCN Level 1 & 2).
- Offering relaxation and yoga sessions, guided walks and outings which will not only improve their health but also aid social cohesion.
- Highlighting the needs of older people through the programme of open days and other educational events, also developing focus groups for more detailed discussion that may lead to future changes in the ways that services are offered and organised in future.
- Celebrating different cultures with open days providing a window into different communities in Leicester.
- Isolated older people having improved IT & social media skills & increased confidence, self-esteem and access to meaningful activities and services
- Enabling isolated older people from different communities to work together to celebrate difference and overcome barriers through open days
- Community champions will have increased community skills allowing them to better connect with isolated older people engaging them in suitable activities and to represent the needs of older people
- Enabling partner organisations to have improved understanding of elderly BAME communities and that services they offer are responsive to individual and cultural needs.