Connect Hackney: What we want to learn

What are the best ways to reduce loneliness and isolation among over 50s in Hackney? That’s what we aim to find out over the next three years of the Connect Hackney programme

We are now commissioning a new round of projects that will test different ways of helping local over 50s keep up social connections as they get older. The idea is to learn what works best.

Here are 15 questions we hope to answer through learning from our work.

The questions have been included in the tender documents for organisations that would like to work with us.

1. What interventions have had the most success in reducing isolation with the identified target group? What can we learn from these interventions, specifically?

2. What information, referral and access methods have been the most successful in engaging older people in sustained activities (six to 12 months or more) aimed at reducing their social isolation and loneliness?

3. Has the use of print media, leaflets or mailings increased the level of older people’s involvement in activities?

4. How successful has the CH connector model been in engaging older people in sustained activities (six to 12 months or more) aimed at reducing their social isolation and loneliness?

5. Can the use of technology help to reduce isolation? Has improved confidence in using IT contributed to a reduction in isolation and loneliness, enabling an individual to navigate services, keep in touch with family and friends, meet new people and find leisure and social activities that are of interest to them?

6. What barriers have needed to be addressed in order for older people to engage with the social and leisure activities available?

7. How effective have asset based community development approaches been in facilitating regular contact with older people at risk of social isolation and loneliness?

8. How confident are older people about ageing well in Hackney? What are the biggest concerns in relation to this?

9. What have we learnt about the contributions that older people make to the local community through volunteering or informal community involvement?

10. Has there been an increase in the level of older people’s involvement in influencing the way services are designed and delivered for older people in the borough? What has been achieved?

11. Has there been an increase in the confidence and ability of CH Ambassadors, in influencing the way services are designed locally? What has that meant for the individuals involved?

12. Has partnership working (as a result of CH) led to improved co-ordination or delivery of any services for those over 50, who are at risk of social isolation? How so?

13. Has evidence and learning from CH influenced any of the transformation work streams within the City and Hackney integrated community care model and if so, what outcome/s have been achieved?

14. Does the programme have clear plans for its legacy? What is the likelihood of the legacy being achieved?

15. Has systems change been achieved, as a result of the CH programme? If so, how?