Sussex Community Foundation hosted a ‘seeing is believing’ seminar at Billingshurst Community Centre on Wednesday September 17 to better understand the needs of older people in Sussex.
The charity raises funds for and makes grants to local charities and community groups across East and West Sussex and Brighton & Hove.
Around thirty representatives from Sussex voluntary sector organisations supporting older people attended, including Crawley Community Transport, Independent Age, East Grinstead CVS, Crawley CVS, Crawley Older People’s Forum, Age UK West Sussex, Rother Valley Together, Mid Sussex Older People’s Council and the Carer’s Centre for Brighton & Hove.
Pictured here on the panel (left to right) is Bob Rance of Tillington Local Care, Liz Bennett, a trustee of Sussex Community Foundation, Kevin Richmond, Chief Executive of Sussex Community Foundation, Amanda Jupp, Chairman of West Sussex County Council, who attended as a representative of the charity Independent Age, and Lisa Phillips of Crawley CVS.
“The seminar was to build on the findings of our report Sussex Uncovered published last year which showed that, in some parts of Sussex, 20% of households have someone aged 65+ living alone,” said Mr Richmond.
Attendees at the seminar highlighted isolation and loneliness, lack of information about and lack of access to services, often because of poor transport links, and an overall lack of joined-up working to be major problems for many older people.
“We want to make our donors aware of these issues and the gaps in services that exist and encourage them to fund voluntary groups that are working to support older people in Sussex,” continued Mr Richmond.
Report and picture contributed by Sussex Community Foundation.