The Scottish Older People’s Assembly, together with Dementia Friendly East Lothian, hosted its third gathering of older people in East Lothian. This time the event was held in Tranent as part of a series of meetings around Scotland between July and October 2016. The format included a welcome by Deputy Provost Jim Gillies and Iain Gray MSP, and a presentation by Tom Berney, SOPA Chair, on the growing role of SOPA in supporting and challenging policy. 20 participants discussed their concerns, the SOPA Campaign issues 2016, and then their priorities on the campaign list.
We heard about SOPA’s work to address issues that matter to older people – poor standards of care, communications and IT, poor care services and poor services for older people with mental health problems. as well as discrimination and increasing chances for older people to participate. SOPA has contributed to a wide range of national policy discussions from the Scottish Government’s Older People’s Development Group to discussions about devolved welfare benefits to Scotland and accessible travel.
People were asked which of SOPA’s Campaign Issues 2016 they supported:
Some people gave priority 1 to more than one Campaign Issue. SOPA Campaign Issues are below, with the number of votes for each one (priority 1) in brackets:
|Comments on the meeting
15 participants completed an evaluation form and of this number:
· 80% valued the meeting as very useful and extremely useful
· many appreciated getting good information, finding out interesting stats about older people and the issues affecting them, networking, meeting other people and discussing relevant topics
· some participants mentioned the lack of attendance by older people and the technical issues
· two participants felt that not enough was said on the detail of the achievements or specifics of the contribution to national policy; and that campaign results/progress should be highlighted
· one person felt the group work required a longer meeting
· one person suggested SOPA could be improved in the future having more participants and more opportunity for individuals to have stalls fully demonstrate/illustrate what they do.
“Lots covered in a very concise and effective way. Liked momentum of meeting – interactive, good participation.”
“Informal atmosphere which made people comfortable to chat easily.”
“General discussion on matters of concern to those attending.”
“(What I liked best about SOPA meeting was) the opportunity to find out what is happening in other parts of Scotland and how it relates to East Lothian.”
“Useful networking for the project I run. Interesting to hear an overview of outcomes SOPA has achieved to date.”
SOPA Co-ordinator Glenda Watt firstname.lastname@example.org
SOPA Office Base: Hayweight House
23 Lauriston Street, Edinburgh, EH3 9DQ Tel office: 0131 281 0875; www.scotopa.org.uk
|Tranent meeting on 15 August 2016|
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