Information Now

12 October 2018


International Credit Union Day
Retirement properties and telecare
Independent Age win award for Bereavement guide
Love it or hate it?, here’s your chance to rate it!
Stay well this Winter
Advocacy Centre North shortlisted for the national advocacy awards
What is affordable housing in England?

Research and Reports

Poorest and oldest people will be hit hardest by a cashless Society
Adapting for Ageing Report 201

Opportunities for Action

Would you like to view your hospital record online.  Consultation session
Training needs survey – National Energy Action


Falls awareness
Computer classes for the Elderly

New on InformationNOW this week!

This week’s events & activities at a glance
Institute of Ageing Film Festival
Pushing the Possibilities course

Updated articles & organisations
The Millin charity
Let’s Talk Charis
Welfare Benefits
Universal Credit
Child Benefit
Carers Allowance
Carers Wellbeing Fund


International Credit Union Day – 18 October 2018

International Credit Union Day celebrates the vital role that credit unions play in communities. The day is an opportunity to promote the achievements of credit unions and the services and support available to members. Our main credit union in Newcastle is Moneywise Credit Union. They have over 11,500 members and offers savings, affordable loans plus many other benefits.You can open a savings account from as little as £1 per week and save any amount up to £35,000.   Information NOW has a number of articles about savings, loans and investments including: credit unions, affordable credit, dealing with debt, loan sharks as well as, savings and investments and getting advice about your money.

Retirement properties and telecare

We had a good response to our recent housing special.  Since then, we have discovered that Anchor Homes has a number of retirement properties available for rent in the Newcastle area, suitable for over 55’s. Your home will be completely self-contained, with your own front door, and equipped with fully-fitted kitchen units.

Each rental location is supported by an experienced manager who takes care of building maintenance and gardening. They are also supported by Anchorcall, a 24-hour emergency call telephone alarm system and secure door entry system, which is also covered by your monthly charge.

For more on personal alarms and telecare visit Information NOW

Independent Age win award for Bereavement Guide

The Coping with Bereavement guide by Independent Age, has been awarded first prize (for ethical issues) by the British Medical Association as part of their 2018 Patient Information Awards. This guide is designed for older people who have been bereaved, but much of the information is relevant to people of all ages. It aims to reassure people about what they are experiencing by exploring some of the common effects of grief and to provide people with information about services and organisations that are available.

InformationNOW has an article, When someone dies:a practical guide.

Love it or hate it? Here’s your chance to Rate it!

Rate it!, the new product review website written by and for older and disabled people, would like to hear about the products you’ve found useful to make daily life easier. And what about the ones that don’t help?  This website offers you an opportunity to share your views and read reviews about small to medium-sized products that can help with leading an independent life.

Denise Stephens of Enabled by Design says:
“Through our experience and research, the Rate it! team has been aware of the importance of product reviews in supporting disabled people to make informed choices when buying products. Ninety per cent of respondents in Scope’s Extra Cost Commission 2015 report, said reviews were a priority for them.”

The Rate it! project is run by three user-centred organisations: the Research Institute for Disabled Consumers, the Leicestershire Centre for Integrated Living, and Enabled by Design.

Every month Rate it! is giving away a prize. Every review written at will count as a single entry. Current reviews include: the Alinker walking bike, Amazon Echo (2nd generation) and Bescita multifunctional can opener.

Stay Well this Winter

It’s that time of year when you need to make arrangements for your flu vaccination.  Public Health England have issued a leaflet about the Flu vaccination which explains who is at risk and who would benefit – which includes the over 65 years.

Advocacy Centre North shortlisted for the national advocacy awards 2018

Advocacy Centre North  has been shortlisted for an incredible four awards at this year’s prestigious National Advocacy Awards on 23 October. The categories they have been shortlisted for are:

  • Best Co – Production (Neurological Advocacy Evaluation with Barefoot Research and the Service User Group)
  • Best Supporter – Social Return Case Management (joint work with personal injury clients)
  • Best Supporter – Gateshead Council (systemic advocacy and promotions)
  • Best Service – (DIY App, Welfare and Families through Crisis)

Congratulations and good luck. Information NOW has an article on advocacy services and how they help you get your voice heard.

What is affordable housing in England?

The House of Commons Library published a briefing paper considering how affordable housing is defined in England and looking at key trends in the affordability of different tenure types. It also examines the supply of affordable housing and the role of Housing Benefit in enabling households to access and retain affordable housing. To read the paper please click here


Poorest and oldest people will be hardest hit by a cashless society

Research by Which? has found that lower-income households and older people will be hardest hit by bank branch and ATM closures, as these groups use cash more frequently than average. 78% of customers in the two lowest income households groups rely on cash, using it 2-3 times per week, and are less likely to use a credit or debit card (26% of people never use card payments). Cash usage is also high amongst people aged 65 years and older, with 4 in 5 people using cash 2-3 times per week. Further information can be found here.

Adapting for Ageing Report 2018

A new report from the Centre for Ageing Better identifies examples of good practice on adapting homes to make it easier for older people to carry out everyday activities such as cooking, bathing or using the toilet.  It describes what a ‘good’ service looks like from the perspective of older people, providing a breakdown of key factors against which local areas can review their own services. The report notes the exemplar collaboration between the Elders Council, Newcastle City Council and Care & Repair Newcastle.Jointly published with Care & Repair England, Adapting for Ageing says the number of older people in need of help with everyday living will nearly double in the next 25 years.  At present, only 7% of UK homes meet basic national accessibility requirements and the report urges Councils to do more by taking a proactive prevention approach to adaptations.Information NOW has a section on housing.


Would you like to view your hospital record online?  Wednesday 24 October, 3.00pm to 6.00pm at Regent Point, Gosforth

The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (NuTH) is holding a consultation meeting at Regent Point to discuss what would be useful for you to access online about your health on your medical record.  If you’d like to be involved, car parking is free and there are refreshments.  To take part ring 0191 223 1381.

Training needs survey – National Energy Action

National Energy Action, a national charity, has offered training and support to statutory and front line services with a view to ending fuel poverty, for over 30 years.  If you work in this sector then you may wish to contribute to their survey to find out what training is relevant to your role.  To take part in the survey follow this link.  Information NOW has a useful series of articles on energy including: gas and electricity and energy saving tips.



In Stoptober, we encourage people to quit smoking. North East smoking rates have fallen by 44% since 2005 and it’s never too late to stop.  The best way to quit is through consistent support from local services as well as family support and smoking aids. You will feel much healthier and your risk of a sudden onset medical condition, such as stroke, will be reduced.   Read the information NOW article on Giving up smoking which signposts you to local support and resources.  Visit to create your free personal quit plan and for the section on smokefree 60+.

Falls Prevention Awareness

With leaves on the ground and heavier rainfall, it is important to think about how to avoid falls outside the home as well as inside. The Academic Health Science Network for North East and North Cumbria (AHSN NENC) created a short film  to provide older people and their families with practical tips to avoid falls.  The film is available on You Tube

Information NOW also has a useful article on falls prevention.

Computer Classes for elders

Elders Council working in partnership with Northumbria Students Union volunteers, are running tailored IT classes. Sessions have recommenced and will take place on alternate Wednesdays from 2 – 4pm.  The next one takes place on Wedneday 17 October. Tuition is tailor made to suit the learner. Topics include setting up an email account; learning how to use your iPad or even learning how to use a computer for the first time. For further details or to register your interest, please email or call Pauline on 0191 208 2701.  Visit our getting online section and our events and activities pages for more computer training options.


Coming up in November

Northumberland Wildlife Trust photography
Creative Age Art Workshops for people with dementia

Institute of Ageing Film Festival, 5 – 7 November

The Newcastle University Institute for Ageing will be hosting a three day Film Festival in November, each evening will feature a film screening followed by a post-film discussion with a panel of researchers/guests, taking place from 6 – 8.30pm at the Tyneside Cinema (Electra Screen).
The screenings are:

Monday 5th November – The Age of Adaline
Tuesday 6th November – The Lady in the Van
Wednesday 7th November – The Intern

For more details look at the film section of Information NOW.


Pushing the Possibilities course, from 18th October for four days

The next free, over 55’s, Pushing the Possibilities course starts on Thursday 18th October.  This free course offers 4 days of outdoor adventure activities such as canoeing, rock climbing, cycling, hill walking and Forest School.  All equipment, minibus transport and professional instruction provided.

The course offers adult,s aged 55 or over, living in Tyne and Wear the chance to learn new skills, meet new people, improve their health and well being and surprise themselves in discovering just what they can still achieve.

To find out more contact: Nick Coates  or telephone 0191 267 1579.


Last updated: September 12, 2019

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