Charity’s report outlines strategy to support people approaching later life
The Centre for Ageing Better has announced it will focus on four key areas to support the ageing population and allow people to enjoy later life.
Considering both social and economic factors, the report, ‘Transforming later lives – our strategy,’ outlines the ways in which it aims to help people who are living for longer.
According to the Office for National Statistics, a child born today has a 50 percent chance of reaching 100 as well as predicting a 26 percent increase in people aged over 65 and a 55 percent increase in those over 85 by 2030.
Ageing Better’s response to this demographic includes a strategy for improving health, housing, employment, and communities. The charity says it has prioritised these areas following its two years of research, exploring which factors make a positive difference to people’s quality of life in older age.
The four areas the Centre for Ageing Better has announced it will improve on are: fulfilling work, safe and accessible homes, healthy ageing and connected communities.
Four key aims
Ageing Better’s first goal is to have one million more people aged 50-69 in fulfilling work by 2022.
Highlighting that employment rates rapidly fall after the age of 55, Ageing Better says that fulfilling work is crucial in making sure individuals remain financially secure later on in their life.
The charity says it will support employers to become more age-friendly, promote health at work, and find new ways to support people who want to get back into work.
Safe and accessible homes
In its second goal, Ageing Better outlined that it aims to help make one million fewer homes to be defined as hazardous and half of all new builds to meet accessibility standards by 2030.
It also sets out to ensure there is a range of suitable homes, that current homes are adapted, and better information about housing options is available for people approaching later life.
Additionally, the charity wants five more years free of preventable disability and to reduce the gap between the richest and poorest people in disability-free life expectancy by 2035.
With good health allowing people to remain active and independent, the Centre for Ageing Better looks to bring together a wide range of organisations who can ensure individuals age well and support local areas to take an integrated approach to healthy ageing.
The final goal the charity underlined is to increase the number of over 50s who feel like they belong in their neighbourhood by 2030.
Ageing Better pledges to help communities create the physical environment required for people to build social connections and become age-friendly so that everyone feels like part of a community.
Dr Anna Dixon, Chief Executive of the Centre for Ageing Better, said: “We are living longer than ever before. The prospect of a 100-year life is an incredible opportunity, but we need to take radical action if more of us are to enjoy those extra years.
“Too many people today suffer in poor health, without access to decent care, live in unsuitable homes, in places that leave us feeling disconnected and lonely.
“We need major changes across our communities, in our workplaces, to our housing and to our approach to healthy ageing if we are to make the most of this opportunity. Too many people currently risk missing out on a good later life.”
In addition, Ageing Better recently carried out research about home adaptations to outline the importance of future-proofing homes for later life.
“No single organisation can achieve this level of change on its own,” Dr Dixon continued. “Over the next ten years we will work with a wide range of partners including national and local government, private, public and the voluntary sector towards achieving these ambitious goals.
“We will urge them to take action and help them to make the changes we know will make a positive difference to later lives.”