Later Life Community

Knowing where to turn for information, support, community activities, friendship, even how to find someone to help out in the home, can be daunting. Later Life Community provides a “one stop shop” for all things “later life” with a dedicated team delivering a suite of projects to make growing old in Suffolk a little easier.

Connect

A single point of access telephone support service, open 7 days a week from 10am – 2pm daily with a real person at the end of the phone – even Christmas Day! We are here to support, signpost and provide information on anything later life related – the service is free of charge and primarily aimed at people aged 65+ in Suffolk. You can even just call us for a chat! 

Online

Our digital projects ensure that people have the skills and knowledge to use digital technology to support their daily lives if they chose. We have two projects

– We offer six week “tablet courses, teaching people aged 55+, in a small group setting, how to use an Amazon Fire tablet – right through the basics of how to turn on the device, set up email addresses, through to using the device to book health appointments, shop and importantly keep in touch with family and friends, in partnership with Realise Futures.

– We also run a series of monthly – “Tea & Tech” sessions in community spaces across the county where we can support individuals who may have a question or problem with a digital device, and would like to have some support from one of our digital Champion volunteers. All over a cuppa and cake!

Click here to find out more about becoming a Digital Champion

Engage

Getting out and about and building relationships with communities is key to supporting individuals longer term with the right information available to them at the right time to support their health and wellbeing. With a focus on poeple aged 65+, our community engagement team are out and aout across the county, attending community events – the Community Cuppa and Pop Up Chinwag. For more information about our events, check out the map on the home page. 

Click here to find out more about becoming a Community Events Volunteer 

BeAFriend

Suffolk has a ageing population and we know that around 1 in 10 people aged 65+ say that they are “often or always lonely” – this equates to over 17,000 people in Suffolk. Our befriending service aims to support people who may be struggling with loneliness and social isolation by building a friendship, either over the telephone, through digital devices, penpal or face to face (this can be both in and out of the home). This service is available 7 days a week (subject to volunteer availability) and we work together to match befrienders and befriendees who share similar interests, hobbies or expereiences. This is usually a weekly call or visit by one of our trained befriending volunteers, who all recieve traning, and are enhanced DBS checked. We always aim to signpost people  to an existing local service is there is one available, so that we can ensure that our support goes to where is it most needed. 

Click here to find out more about becoming a BeAFriend volunteer 

Frequently Asked Questions

Will the service cost me anything?

All of our services are free of charge. As a registered charity, we rely on the support of funders and donations of individuals to continue our important work. If you would like to make a donation towards our services, you can do so by calling 01449 707030 or making a donation at one of our events.

Do you need to just be over 65+ or are there other criteria I need to meet?

Most of our Later Life projects are aimed at people aged 65+, although this is not prescriptive. Our Digital projects are for people aged 55+ but always check with us first around eligibility for any of our support, as if we can help, we will. 

What type of things can you help me with?

We can help with putting people in touch with statutory and voluntary services. We have helped with finding domestic or gardening help, community transport, disability equipment, benefit claims support, blue badge applications, advocacy, befriending services, social activities. We can also access general information on subjects relating to living well in later life.

Is the service confidential?

Yes, absolutely.We take people’s personal details extremely seriously and never share your information with anyone without your permission. 

Can we just speak over the phone or do I need to meet in person?

Our service is delivered over the telephone. We can follow up any work we have done for you in writing, if that helps.

Can I just ring up for a chat if I need some general information or help with something?

Yes of course! We love to chat, and are always happy to have a natter and see how we may be able to help. 

How many times can I use the service?

As many times as you need to. Once you have made contact with us, we will talk through how else we may be able to help and then come up with a plan to keep in contact if required. 

What days and times is the service available?

The Connect service is open 10am-2pm everyday of the year with a “real” person there to chat to. The BeAFriend service is also available 7 days a week, depending on volunteer availability (Click here for how to become a BeAFriend volunteer). Digital and Engage projects are date and time specific – See map for details

Read the latest news from our blog:

Cuppa & Chat

Cuppa & Chat

Having piloted a successful later life community engagement programme in some areas of East Suffolk, over the last twelve months, we are delighted to announce that...

Wise Up For Winter

Wise Up For Winter

Winter!  Yes, seriously – with less than 100 days until Christmas (yes, I said it!), and a significant drop in temperature over the last few days, we sadly need to...

A word from our Chief Executive

A word from our Chief Executive

And we’re live!  After 21 months of changes (and I don’t just mean COVID), I am delighted to welcome you to our new and shiny website – and our new name for our...