Tuesday, 12 June 2012

County Council Cabinet Approves Measures To Reduce Isolation And Lonliness Among Older People

The County Council's Cabinet has approved a new approach designed to reduce lonliness and isolation among older people living in Cambridgeshire.

The Community Navigator project will coordinate and enhance existing networks of support  working closely with local communities, statutory and voluntary organisations to enable older people to find the services and support they need to meet their individual needs.

The work of the Navigators will build on the existing best practice in Cambridgeshire by supporting the existing safeguarding measures provided by the County Council and other organisations in the County.

County Council Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, Councillor Steve Tierney, said: "One of the biggest problems faced by our older residents is lonliness and isolation - even for those who live within our supportive communities.

"The development of the Navigator project is at a very early stage, but we are fully committed to providing the services and support older people need to live full and fulfilling lives, while at the same time ensuring they can stay within their home and local community wherever possible and a key to this is identifying the needs of the individual and ensuring they know what help and advice is available to them from both the County Council and other organisations across Cambridgeshire."

Cabinet (June 12) approved a three-year pilot scheme which will appoint a paid Community Navigator in each district council area who will develop closer links with their local communities, voluntary and statutory agencies and work with local people to identify gaps in existing services, and also help to support and develop the volunteers who are often the first point of contact for older people.

Cllr Tierney, added: "Similar schemes elsewhere have had a very positive impact on efforts to ensure that older people are able to have the best possible quality of life, while at the same time reducing the lonliness and isolation that some older people experience.

"There is already much work going on in Cambridgeshire and where there are already individuals, groups and charitable organisations involved we will endeavour to champion and support them whenever possible."

For more information go to: www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/CMSWebsite/Apps/Committees/AgendaItem.aspx?agendaItemID=5469