Many older people long for companionship - but don't relish going into a care home. Now a chain of pioneering specialist retirement villages offers the benefits of commmunity PLUS independence.
We all know that time moves faster and the body moves slower as we reach our fifties, sixties and beyond. But it’s not all bad news.
For some of us, this is a time of time for taking it easy and savouring what life has to offer. Perhaps our children have left home, which means more time to ourselves.
Possibly we have grandchildren that we can watch growing up without having the frontline responsibilites of parenthood. Maybe we’ve been able to stand aside from the rat race by moving into retirement or semi-retirement.
But it’s not always plain sailing. Many of us become lonelier as we grow older. Our children have flown the nest, perhaps to another part of the country, or even abroad.
We no longer have the companionship of the workplace. And over the years, we’ve just lost touch with many of our old friends.
We all crave company, even if that just means having a few people around us to talk to. But in this hi-tech, fast-paced world, where people have to worker longer hours to keep their heads above water, time is at a premium.
As result, many older people can become marginalised.
In dozens of locations across the Midlands and North of England a pioneering project is now underway to break down the sense of isolation that some of us experience as we get on in life.
At the core of the project is the idea of specialist housing schemes.
These are mini-retirement villages for older people that provide a sense of purpose and community, plus a little bit of love, care and attention.
The housing schemes are run by the ExtraCare Charitable Trust.
The not-for-profit organisation works hand in hand with local councils, housing associations and government bodies to offer affordable housing, companionship and care.
Comprising of 12 retirement villages and 17 smaller housing developments, they are designed to allow older people of 55 to stay active, keep connected and get involved with their local communities.
Facilities and activities
The housing schemes offer medical and care facilities 24/7, and facilities such as libraries, restaurants, and landscaped gardens, communal lounges and guest suites plus a range of onsite activities including:
Already the lives of many older people across the Midlands and North of England have been transformed by this pioneering project.
To find out more check out the ExtraCare Charitable Trust website.