In or Out – We Still Need To Care For Our Ageing Population

I write this blog to highlight that whatever happens next week with the referendum vote, we will still need to find better ways to support our ageing population.

Here’s a reminder [with actual facts and no scare tactics] of the issues facing us as we try to ensure our golden generation live the happier, healthier lives they deserve.

  • Our population is ageing – 38% increase in over 50’s by 2019
  • Our “golden generation” is suffering from increasingly complex health issues.
  • The top 5 issues are Arthritis, Heart Attack, Stroke, Dementia & Diabetes
  • One in five people will develop dementia
  • 40% increase in carer’s aged 80+
  • 3.8 million living alone – loneliness increases the risk of depression
  • £117bn of unpaid care provided every year
  • 25% of care homes forecast to close within two years
  • Local Authority budgets cut by 43%
  • NHS already facing a £30bn funding deficit
  • The average cost of care for a person living with dementia is £30k per year

A 2% reduction in NHS funding as a result of Brexit, forecast by the chancellor today is a startling prediction, especially as this budget was supposed to be ring-fenced. Why didn’t the “corporate world” get similar bad news with corporation tax etc…??

However, with every problem comes opportunities.

Person-centred care services, provided by micro enterprises, developed by social entrepreneurs, delivered in co-operation with health & care stakeholders, can play a huge part in ensuring  we give our golden generation the quality of life they richly deserve.

A very famous golfer, Sam Snead, once said  “The biggest hazard we face in life is fear”.

Please don’t be fearful!!  Trust your instincts!!

Whatever happens with the vote next week, our ageing population still needs your love, care and support.

Here’s two final facts amongst the myriad of “predictions”

  1. The world will not stop turning
  2. We will continue to share this amazing planet together

My committment and  passion to helping our golden generation live happier, healthier lives, whether we are “in or out” will continue.

So proud to be playing a part. x

Happy National Carers Week

National Carers Week is the perfect time to celebrate the amazing love, compassion and commitment shown throughout the year by people caring for our ageing population.

Many of you will have heard harrowing stories of elderly people dying alone, sometimes not discovered for days.

Others out there will know of a family trying to cope with a loved one disappearing before their eyes as dementia takes its toll.

I could keep going  – but that’s enough pain for now.

Heres some good news – There’s an amazing army of carers out there right now making  a huge contribution to elderly peoples lives. Imaging where we would be without them?

So spare a thought this week for the carers in your local community helping our golden generation live happier, dignified and healthier lives.

The other good news is that there’s a new wave of social entrepreneurs out there dedicating themselves to developing & delivering person-centred care for our ageing population.

Their collective passion, drive, and commitment to creating better futures for the elderly, and their carers is truly inspirational.

Tomorrow, Golf In Society will provide another 12 hours of priceless respite care for a group of amazing ladies who we are so proud to be supporting.

Happy National Carers Week to you all. X










Combining Care For The Elderly & Their Carers

caregiver images (13)

£119 billion of unpaid care is provided every year in the UK. The majority of it is provided by an ageing population, who are often in need of care & support themselves.

In the past year I’ve witnessed so many carers close to breaking point – as they struggle to cope with caring for a loved one. As social services come under increasing pressure and many people cannot afford private care – the pressure grows.

The number of elderly unpaid carers is on the increase. They are often too busy caring for their loved ones that their own health & wellbeing suffers. It’s physically demanding & emotionally draining caring for someone 24/7 in your prime, let alone as you enter your supposed “golden years”.

The modern phenomenon of disparate family networks living increasing stressful existences, has led to elderly carers being placed under increasing pressure. Elderly people feel it’s “their duty” to care for their partner and are often “too proud” to seek help.

When people finally admit they need support, they are often confused about the services available to them, which ones are most suitable, how to access them and whether they can afford them.

This can be overwhelming to older people. It’s not surprising they get confused when you consider the complexities of accessing care and the myriad of organisations involved in delivering it.

Co-operation & collaboration is crucial if we are to provide the support our elderly population desperately need. With the right “mind-set” amongst health & wellbeing stakeholders it can be achieved.

Here’s a potential way we could simplify things.

Firstly let’s produce Combined Care Plans (CCP’s), that incorporate the health, social and respite requirements of elderly people and their primary carer(s).

Secondly, let’s clearly signpost the right person-centred support services.

Thirdly, CCP’s delivered in partnership between local health & wellbeing stakeholders – to ensure professional, consistent and high quality outcomes.

Fourthly, conduct regular reviews of the CCP’s to ensure they remain relevant.

And finally, recruit CCP champions who can lead the healthy ageing agenda in their local community.

A Simple, thought-provoking approach that puts elderly people and their carers at the heart of it.

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Inspiring Therapy For Parkinson’s People



Have you ever tried hitting a golf ball?  To do it successfully you need balance, co-ordination, control, rhythm, determination and flexibility. Are you one of those people who have found it too hard to even hit the ball – let alone consider taking golf up?

Last week we invited people living with Parkinson’s to join us for a “Golf Day Out” at Rudding Park in North Yorkshire.

By now you will be aware of my passionate belief that golf has so much to offer our ageing population, especially those who need care and support in their golden years.

However, the well-documented challenges people with Parkinson’s face, coupled with research that golf is one of the first activities people give up when diagnosed, made this one of my biggest challenges.

How do you deliver an enjoyable, rewarding and memorable day for people who struggle with balance, co-ordination, stiffness and movement?

You can imagine my dismay when I saw the weather forecast for rain, wind and cold temperatures!!!

Despite the great British weather the day proved to be an inspirational success – Here’s why.

Firstly, Rudding Park has an excellent range of facilities for beginners with an amazing team of customer-focussed people. Secondly, we had a fantastic group of “golfing buddies” from the club’s membership who teamed up with their Parkinson’s guests. Thirdly, a local Parkinson’s group committed to helping people with the disease live better lives. And finally, people with Parkinson’s willing to try something new.

To witness what happened next was amazing!

Within two hours everyone was hitting golf shots as if they’d played the game all their lives. I have so many wonderful and inspirational memories of the day – too many to share in this blog – but all I can say was that it was pretty emotional stuff!


The afternoon tea in the clubhouse was the perfect end to  a great “Golf Day Out”. It gave us the chance to relax, socialise and decide when to come back and do it all again!!!

Can’t wait for the next one in June!!