Agenda and draft minutes

Older People's Partnership - Wednesday, 15 June 2016 10.00 am

Venue: Council Chamber, Fourth Floor, Easthampstead House, Bracknell. View directions

Contact: Lizzie Rich  01344 352253

No. Item


Minutes and Action Points pdf icon PDF 165 KB


The minutes of the meeting on 16 March 2016 were approved as a correct record.


Green Gym update


Alex Rawle, Green Gym Project Co-Ordinator gave a presentation on the progress on the Green Gym at the Syngenta Jeallot’s Hill Landshare since its launch.


Alex explained that the concept of a Green Gym had been established to combat inactivity, mental health and dementia in the UK, and to create cost savings for the NHS and health services. A Green Gym combined horticultural activity with resistance-based exercise. The benefits of green spaces were outlined, and it was reported that the mental health benefits from access to green spaces were particularly key. The Bracknell Forest Green Gym was the first of its kind to have a particular client group of people with mental health needs.


The Bracknell Forest Green Gym held 4 sessions per week, each running for 1.5 hours. The session included gardening activities, resistance-based exercise on constructed apparatus and time for participants to socialise over tea and biscuits.


The targets for the year were for a minimum of 70 people to have attended sessions across the year, and for mental and physical health benefits to be experienced. The resulting test data at the end of the year would advise whether to extend the Green Gym principle to other client groups. Success would also be measured by the scales PHQ9 (which tested for depression), GAB7 (which tested for anxiety) and WEMWBS (which tested overall mental wellbeing).


Referrals to the Green Gym could come through self-referral, agency referral or GP referral. Self-referral had been the most popular route, but it was noted that GP referrals were increasing.


Transport to the Green Gym had been an issue, as although the Number 53 bus would stop outside the Syngenta site, other options were being investigated for participant transport.


Alex reported that his contract was for one year, and his primary aim was establish the Green Gym as a self-sustaining project with the help of The Conservation Volunteers (TCV).


Partners were invited to email Alex for more information at


Volunteer Passport Scheme


Phil Cook gave an update on the Volunteer Passport Scheme.


The Scheme had come out of the Community Resilience Partnership, which had been set up with statutory partners from Bracknell Forest Council, Involve, Thames Valley Police and others. The Volunteer Passport Scheme aimed to give volunteers more of a brand, and to allow partners to share training opportunities to develop a better trained body of volunteers in the Borough.


The Council’s Corporate Management Team, Public Health team and others had pledged money to fund the launch of the scheme. Work was ongoing to develop a logo, the brand and the paperwork to support the scheme.


A local company had offered design and print services to assist the launch of the scheme, and the voluntary sector in the borough had been supportive of the idea.


In response to questions, the following points were noted:

·         Most partners had said they would still need to complete separate DBS checks for every volunteer with them, so DBS checks could not be shared on the scheme

·         A photo identification card was proposed, to add to security of the scheme.

·         The project required funding for an administrator/co-ordinator role to maintain the volunteer database

·         A Wokingham roll-out was also being considered


Digital Inclusion Plan pdf icon PDF 225 KB

Additional documents:


The Partnership noted the Digital Inclusion report, and proposed a further meeting of the Steering Group to investigate next steps.


Planning for Later Life pdf icon PDF 211 KB


Tracey Hedgcox, Age Concern gave an update on the progress of the Later Life event.


The Steering Group for the event had met to discuss plans for the event. A key issue raised had been the difficulty in finding a key speaker to discuss their plans for upcoming or recent retirement. Partners were asked to send any speaker suggestions to Tracey Hedgcox.


The event would include a talking robot and a wishing well for people to put their wishes for retirement. There would be free tea, coffee and biscuits, and free WiFi for attendees. Lunch would be provided for stallholders. Councillor Dale Birch and the Mayor had both been booked to attend the event.


Communications had been a barrier, and it was confirmed that Age Concern did not need to wait for the approval of Bracknell Forest Council’s Communications Team before promoting the event on Social Media.


It was confirmed that the event would be on 4 October 2016, from 10am until 4pm at Bracknell Leisure Centre.


Older People's Strategy (Refresh)


Margaret Gent, Joint Commissioning attended the meeting to give an update on the proposed refresh of the Older People’s Strategy.


It was agreed that the Older People’s Strategy needed to be refreshed, and that it should reflect the updates and changes since the last strategy. The results from the Later Life event would feed into the outcome of the Older People’s Strategy.


Margaret advised that the refresh was in the early stages, and work was ongoing to pull together the relevant action plans to inform the new strategy.


Older People's Action Plan pdf icon PDF 832 KB

Additional documents:


The Partnership noted the Action Plan and agreed the proposed update..


Residential Care Contract and Support Charter


Margaret Gent, Joint Commissioning, gave an update on the changes to the Residential Care Contract and Support Charter.


It was reported that care contracts were being reworked to include recent changes to legislation. All contract holders would also be asked to sign up to the Care Support Charter as designed by Be Heard.


The Residential Care Contract was out for consultation on changes including a new section on respite, and new sections on the required policies for the provider to hold. New contracts would also be subject to new Quality Outcome Measures, and would be required to comply with the Accessible Information Standard and the Care Support Charter.


The Care Support Charter was explained to be a description of how people would like to be supported by their carers, reduced into eight statements.


It was hoped that the charter would help to give people the type of support they want, and to help staff to understand what was appropriate behaviour.


Partnership members commented that although the Care Support Charter was a positive document including good practice, some of the demands made on care workers such as ‘don’t try to rush me if I take longer than usual’ would be difficult for short-staffed care agencies to deliver.


Accessible Information Standard pdf icon PDF 168 KB

Additional documents:


Rifit Hussain-Curtis, Joint Commissioning gave an update on the Accessible Information Standard.


It was explained that the Accessible Information Standard had a dual focus to provide accessible information, and communication support for people with disabilities or sensory loss. The Standard was applicable to NHS services and publically funded adult social care, but was also hoped to be useful to all public service providers.


The implementation of the Standard followed five main stages: identify, record, highlight these details, share details with health and social care services, meet the person’s information and communication needs. To assist in providing information and guidance around the Standard, the Joint Commissioning team had received funding to put together an Interactive Guide to the Standard which would be put on the Bracknell Forest Website. Tina Stevenson requested that the link to this guide be shared with her when it was available, so that it could be disseminated.

Action: Rifit Hussain-Curtis


The Standard would require reasonable adjustments to be made, in proportion to the size of the organisation. However, members commented that capacity in all organisations was limited and it may not be possible to fund a member of staff to implement the changes required by the Standard. It was requested that the Partnership’s frustrations be raised with NHS England.

Action: Rifit Hussain-Curtis


For more information, members were invited to visit the NHS England's resources page


New Vision of Care


Mira Haynes, Chief Officer: Older People and Long Term Conditions gave a presentation on the New Vision of Care.


The New Vision of Care was explained to be a model of care for those living with complex conditions, produced by a partnership of East Berkshire Local Authorities and sponsored by the System Leaders Group. The objectives were to provide better health for individuals with complex needs, better care for individuals, and better value and financial sustainability. It was commented that this work would fit alongside Bracknell Forest Council’s plans for Transformation.


Workshops had been conducted with a design team and with the public, and this resulted in a model to reflect the likely periods of change in human life. It was hoped that this structure would help to align patient expectations after a diagnosis of a Long Term condition with that of the medical professionals. A process of mapping existing services was ongoing over an 8 week period.




Janet Berry reported that the Open Learning Centre’s funding had been refocussed to provide Skills For Work effective from September 2017, and that this would make it difficult to provide Lifelong Learning for Older People after this date.


Linda Wells reported that Bracknell Forest Homes had begun a new project to encourage single, older people who were living in family-sized homes to downsize to a bungalow or sheltered housing. Older people would be offered financial and practical help with moving, and a financial incentive to do so. To further encourage moves, funding for adaptation work had been limited to £2,500 if the house was not deemed to be appropriate.


Tina Stevenson reported that the Citizens Advice Bureau had started their Adviceline service on 1 March 2016. This service had meant that more people had phoned in, but had tested resources to cope with the influx.


Madeline Diver reported that July would be Scams Awareness Month, and that the Citizens Advice Bureau had produced resources for partners to use to promote the cause. The resources would also be brought to distribute at the Later Life event.


Future Meetings

Future meetings are scheduled for:

21 September 2016

7 December 2016