Loneliness among the Elderly

Your community has identified that loneliness is an area of health they would like your help with. Please outline what this community project will deliver in order to develop a healthier community through addressing the topic of loneliness. This health orientated project will demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of underpinning theory related to Community Development and how this works to addressing the chosen community health issue.

Your proposal will include the following:

  1. Introduction

It should be concise briefly outline the focus and contents of your proposal.

 

  1. Background

This section will include details on the broad term of community and details on the specific community you are targeting.

You will succinctly state the Aim of your project. This section must be underpinned with relevant evidence in order to provide a solid rationale and focus for the area of loneliness your project will tackle for this specific community.

 

  1. Community Profile
    • This could include socio-demographic factors, the resources the community holds and also outline the community assets, weaknesses, opportunities and threats
    • Clearly outlined target audience

 

  1. Your Community Project
    • State the Aim and Objectives ( which can be measured – What will it do?)
    • Apply ALL five principles of Community Development to your project
      • Social Justice
      • Participation
      • Education/Learning
      • Equality
      • Collaboration/Cooperation
    • Outline the resources your project will require
    • Outline the project activity/ies
    • State the delivery and implementation processes (e:g; how you will reach/attract your specific target audience. Where the project will take place. How long will the project run for)
    • Identify a suitable stream of funding your project could apply for

 

  1. Evaluation of your community project

State how you will evaluate the project’s effectiveness using suitable methods in accordance to the project design. In order for effective change to be noted a baseline assessment must occur so all projects will need to state how this information will be captured.

 

  1. Conclusion

Close the proposal through encapsulating the proposal’s Aim and Objectives

 

Academic presentation/style:  All work should be presented concisely, grammatically correct and aligned correctly to the University of Wolverhampton Harvard referencing handbook.

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Introduction

Loneliness among the elderly is considered a significant public health issue. According to the World Health Organization, loneliness has a prevalence of estimated 16-25% in persons above the age of 65 years. Substantial causes of loneliness among the elderly persons in the community include the death of a spouse, changes in the living environment, fear of becoming a burden to the other members of the community, and the loss of a network of friends. In as much as various interventions or preventative measures have been implemented for addressing loneliness among the elderly, limited interventions have demonstrated effective measures that can address the issue in the long-term. In the UK and most of the developing countries around the world, more and more elderly persons in the community live either alone or in isolation. The heightened state of vulnerability and loneliness for older adults contributes to the deterioration of their health. Initiatives such as regularly visiting the elderly, encouraging the elderly to engage in activities such as outings, art and craft, and dancing can help in creating a healthy community. Retirement villages in the UK have care programs for the elderly that have been critical for addressing issues such as loneliness that the old persons face. The focus of this community development program is to address loneliness as a health issue that majorly affects the elderly members of the Leeds community.

 

Background

Community development refers to a process where members for given community work as a unit in effectively addressing societal problems. Kharicha et al. (2017), states that loneliness among elderly persons is a societal issue, factors such as the loss of family members, longevity, deterioration in health, income and the breakdown of relationships all contribute to elderly isolation. The elderly in the community are left to live alone, and this, in one way or the other may expose them to various issues (Schnittger et al., 2012). In North Leeds, loneliness among the ageing population is an issue that has been given increasing consideration by the local authorities. Kharicha et al. (2017), argues that the links between loneliness and health-related issues over the years have been reported more frequently. The city of Leeds is hardly an exemption when it comes to health-related concerns among the elderly that are directly associated with loneliness. Social isolation in the elderly population also contributes to high cases of depression and mortality. According to Koc (2012), failure in the implementation of the right solutions best explains the reason for the significant rise in loneliness, especially among the aged in communities.

In the Leeds community, isolation among the elderly population continues to be a growing concern. According to Locality (2020), the majority of the older people in Leeds live alone and hardly have people to talk to for extended periods that may extend to months. Older People’s Action in the Locality, a community development program in the city of Leeds, states that in as much as it has been at the forefront in supporting more than 700 elderly persons, a large percentage of the population face issues of isolation. More programs need to offered to ensure that the social challenges and needs among the older population of Leeds are satisfactory. The National Health Service has, in the past decade, warned that loneliness, if not dealt with effectively, will continue being a primary public concern (NHS, 2020).

 

Aims of the Project

v To ensure that an estimated 55% of the elderly population in North Leeds that is struggling with loneliness leads to normal and healthy lives in the next one year.

In the past five years, the percentage of the elderly population facing challenges of social isolation has been on the decline across Leeds. According to the NHS and the Local Government Association, an estimated 55% of the elderly population in Leeds is currently struggling with loneliness. The current percentage is significantly lower than the 63% in 2018.

v To create healthy communities in North Leeds in the next six months, where the elderly population will get a platform for airing any of the challenges that they face.

Social inequality denies some of the members in a given community the opportunity to enjoy various benefits. In Leeds, an estimated 55% of the aged continue to struggle with challenges of social isolation that, in return, harm their health. The creation of healthy communities calls for collaboration among various stakeholders (Kim, 2018). By working jointly, community development groups and the members of the societies, for instance, may implement solutions that may have a long-term positive impact on the elderly population (Hoffman, 2017).

v To improve the psychological and emotional wellbeing for the elderly population in the Moor Allerton Community by introducing various community development initiatives that can curb social isolation in the next ten months.

Loneliness tends to harm the emotional and psychological being of the elderly population. The introduction of the Older People’s Action in the Locality has, in the recent past, been critical for addressing the challenge of loneliness among the elderly population. Nevertheless, more initiatives will effectively deal with the significant rise in cases of social isolation in parts of North Leeds (Moor Allerton Community). In the next ten months, the implementation of the right initiatives may be critical for ensuring that a healthy community develops in North Leeds, where the aged persons get adequate support.

 

Community Profile

Overview of the Community

The focus of this proposal will be on the North Leeds area, with the primary attention directed to the Moor Allerton elderly population. Moor Allerton is an area in North Leeds close to the Kings Outering Road. North Leeds, located in the northern part of the City of Leeds. The NHS is one of the biggest employers in the community and runs various public health institutions. Leeds City Council takes charge of the public schools in North Leeds (Parklane, 2020). The Leeds City Council plays an integral role in ensuring that the quality of education in areas such as North Leeds is on a high. The region boasts of a diverse economy with sectors such as service, manufacturing, and agriculture being dominant. North Leeds is a prime economic growth contributor to the City of Leeds as a whole. The primary means of transport in the region include roads using buses and personal vehicles and railway transportation.

Social amenities in North Leeds include shops, health centres such as Avenue Surgery and Moorcroft Surgery that are run by the NHS. The NHS has been at the forefront in ensuring that the health facilities have adequate equipment that can effectively meet the ever-growing demand in North Leeds (NHS, 2020). Weetwood Police Station serves the larger part of the region, including Alwoodley and Moor Allerton neighbourhoods in the town. The crime rate in the area has been on the decline in the recent past, and majorly linked to community policing that is mostly applicable by law enforcement agencies. Facilities in the North Leeds area have increased, addressing various issues that affect the population. The Older People’s Action in the Locality (OPAL) offers support to estimated 700 elderly persons in the LS16 area of North Leeds (Locality, 2020).

North Leeds population has in the past three years grown significantly. Currently, the area has an estimated population of 474,632. The majority of the people in the two are whites (91%), while the Asians and blacks form 4.5% and 1.4% of the North Leeds population, respectively. The youth, 18-45 years, form the most significant percentage of the North Leeds population, followed by persons below the age of 18 years. The elderly persons have the least percentage of the total population. However, the NHS projects that the elderly. Leeds is very diverse, with more than 140 ethnic groups. The minority population represents nearly 18% of the total population of Leeds. According to the 2011 census, the ethnic and racial breakdown of Leeds was: population in the Moor Allerton Community.

SWOT Analysis for the Moor Allerton Community

Strengths

v Proximity to the Westwood police station

v The community has in the recent past registered high levels of collaboration among the members of the community.

v Proximity to the city centre best explains why a large percentage of the Leeds population prefer living in Moor Allerton Community. Weaknesses

v The society, highly recognised for equality and social justice, still struggles with issues of social isolation.

v Discrimination targeting specific age groups and race have been prevalent in the past in the community.

v The number of Supermarkets and recreational amenities is lower compared to other towns such as Shadwell is to the east; Moortown is to the south.

v The crime rates in the small town in North Leeds is above average.

Opportunities

v The community values equality, and this is an opportunity for attracting both domestic and foreign investors.

v The strategic location of Moor Allerton is significant in that it can contribute to the economic growth of the town.

v The community need to work closely with the Leeds City Council in the implementation of policies that will be beneficial for the entire population. Threats

v One of the main threats that the Moor Allerton Community faces is social isolation, primarily directed to the elderly.

v There is a lack of adequate recreational facilities compared to other towns in North Leeds is a threat that Moor Allerton Community.

v The above-average crime rates in the small town may discourage investors from channelling their investments.