Age-Friendly Communities Updates: October 2023


We will add articles about Age-Friendly Communities to the Age-Friendly Updates page regularly to inform the progress of Caerphilly’s over 50 programmes. Posts will include some views on the Age-Friendly process.

Caerphilly will not be the only topic for our blogs. We will publish news from around Wales when it is available.

1. Across WalesThe Caerphilly Over 50 Age-Friendly Logo

1.1 Applications to the Network of Age-Friendly

Communities and Cities

The Vale of Glamorgan’s application to join the Age-Friendly network has been successful. Denbighshire, Ceredigion, Swansea, and RCT are also applying to join the network. It is encouraging that the number of applications is increasing.

1.2 A new Working Group on Engagement

A Working group will now develop an evaluation approach for engagement in Age-Friendly Communities. The group includes representatives from Local Authorities, experienced academics, Age Connect, and COPA (our Chair and Vice Chair).

This will assess differences in practice as sources of learning occur in Age-Friendly Communities across Wales. Hopefully, this will encourage the continued sharing of experiences.

Dave McKinney drew the group’s attention to the COPA paper, “FRAMEWORK FOR ENGAGEMENT OF OLDER PEOPLE IN AFCs”. The Older People’s Commissioner has endorsed this.

This approach excited the WHO, and they encouraged our progress.

2. Caerphilly

2.1 Age-Friendly Communities Lead Officer

The new Age-Friendly Lead officer joined, as a temporary appointee, in time to attend the Steering Committee meeting in early September. He has already had two lengthy discussions with our chair. He is looking to encourage others to join the Steering group.

2.2 Virtual Reality: Inside – Outside Project

Unfortunately, through the summer, there have been a variety of issues that have limited the number of carers available. So, it has been necessary to reconsider if we can embed the activity in the Care Homes.

We recognised at the outset that helping individual residents view the headsets might not be an efficient use of the Carers’ time. Creating events with several residents was likely to be more achievable. By introducing a Chromecast with a smart TV, the video from the headset would display in a 360-degree, 2D picture. While waiting for their turn, those waiting could see what the resident with the headset was reacting to.

The setup that was used for our initial demonstrations would be ideal for these events. This would require finding volunteers so that the ‘event’ could be run with a carer and volunteer with several residents. We have had an initial discussion with Caerphilly Cares and have some ideas to explore that might achieve this.

3. A View from Cymru Older People’s Alliance

3.1 Forum Representatives (FR) Meeting

We met with the Older People’s Commissioner’s (OPC) Officer and Representatives from the Welsh Government (WG) to review progress across Wales with Age-Friendly Communities. It was pleasing to see so many of the FRs attending. They made many constructive comments based on the document COPA had circulated to all attending. The OPC Officer and WG Representatives were equally constructive in their responses. They accepted that the development of AFC across Wales was far from uniform. The involvement of older people was seen as critically important.

They thought that the current funding was likely to be secure until the next elections in Wales. Beyond that, it would depend on the new government.

3.2 Meeting with Future Generations Office

A meeting is being arranged with a senior officer from the Office of the Future Generations Commissioner.

3.3 AGM and Conference

COPA AGM/Conference this year will be held in Pontypridd. Speakers will be Helena Herklotz, Older People’s Commissioner, Care Forum Wales, Mario Kreft MBE, or Mary Wimbury. The latter will address “The value and role of the private care sector”.

COPA has arranged a hybrid video conference with hubs in Swansea, Anglesey, and Conwy. This will allow members unable to travel to take part.

October 2023

Age-Friendly Updates: JUNE 2023 Age-Friendly Updates: JULY 2023 Age-Friendly Updates: SEPT 2023