Working with older people

Presentation from Jude Woods from Leeds Older People’s Forum
Arts Together Meeting – Tuesday 19 May, on Zoom

Jude presented an overview of the Friendly Communities project which is part of all the work going on to make Leeds a great place to grow old in, including

Dementia Friendly Leeds

Age and Dementia Friendly Guide and Sign Up

Age Friendly Leeds

Age Friendly Ambassadors

Age Proud Leeds

Jude mentioned that the older people who consulted on the Dementia Friendly Community Action plan highlighted the importance of arts and leisure to them, so it is one of the three main areas (alongside transport, and business and shops).  There are resources available to help make organisations age and dementia friendly, including free Dementia Friends information sessions that they can deliver, you can sign up to the Dementia Action Alliance, and there are resource packs and stickers available.

(Jude presenting Leeds Rhinos with their Dementia Friends certificates)


They welcomed Arts Together members to join the very successful Come in and Rest Scheme (when we re-open!), talked about the Age Proud Leeds scheme, how to become an Age Friendly Ambassador, and about the debilitating effects of ageism in communities and how we can all look out for it and address it.

And ended with this wonderful quote;

“Age pride is for everyone who refuses to regret waking up a day older, who acknowledges long life as the privilege it is, and who is prepared to challenge the power structures that underlie all discrimination. We are all ageing. Each of us benefits when we make common cause against oppression. Age pride is for everyone.”

(Ashton Applewhite, This Chair Rocks, A Manifesto Against Ageism, 2019)


In the Q and A session that followed, members said that they found it difficult in the current lockdown to stay in touch with older members of their groups due to difficulties with Zoom or even getting online, and that even asking them to use technology can cause stress.  Jude suggested a couple of places people could find help, which even have tech support helplines;

Age UK Leeds –

100% Digital –

And if people want support on phone-conferencing using landlines, Jude would be happy to help.

The Time to Shine magazine Shine is looking for contributions from older people – people can get in touch with Tom Bailey.  And if anyone knows someone who they think would like to receive the magazine, they can give Jude their address and it can be sent out to them.

The issue of the difficulties of co-production was raised and it was agreed it would be a good topic to discuss at a future meeting.  Jude said they had some information on their Time To Shine website here

And finally, they are currently recruiting local Champions to help them offer Dementia Friends sessions for new COVID volunteers.  So if anyone would like to do this, (there is an online course available on how to deliver sessions over Zoom) and you can choose how frequently you would be available to deliver them, just get in touch.

[email protected]

And you can download the full presentation here