Jean Allen, Chair of the Tendring Older People’s Forum visited Frinton’s twin town of Biberach in Germany recently (1st/2nd October) to share knowledge and information on the challenges being faced across Europe of dealing with an ageing population.
The two day meeting, which coincided with World Older Peoples Day (October 1st), was opened by the Mayor of Biberach who said, “All cities have the same problem, but different solutions.” The meeting brought together representatives from the host town of Biberach, Tendring, Valencia in Spain and Swidnica, Poland.
The meeting was organised by the town council of Biberach and their twinning committee. Jean Allen, who is also Director of Home Instead (Frinton), a company specialising in providing care at home for older people, has first hand experience of the day to day issues facing the elderly and gave a presentation about the work of the Tendring Older People’s forum and the challenge it faces to be a voice for the elderly in the area.
The packed programme included an overview of care funding in Germany, visits to two ground breaking care living/residential centres for the elderly, presentations from community projects for the elderly, and discussions amongst the delegates regarding common problems and solutions. The costs of the meeting were met by the town council of Biberach.
Commenting on the visit, Jean said, “It was super to visit our twin town where we were really well looked after. The people of Biberach were really generous with their hospitality and we were taken to visit local cultural sites and enjoyed many delicious meals!
“We all agreed that in times of rising costs, cuts in budgets and a growing elderly population there is a greater need to reach outside our own countries for ideas of how to provide quality care which maintains the independence and dignity of the elderly.
“The event demonstrated that we can all learn from each other. I was really struck by the fact that we all face similar issues, even though we are operating in different cultural and economic environments.”
For more information regarding The Tendring Older Peoples Forum please contact the Forum’s secretary, Ann Lax by email on [email protected]
For more information on Home Instead in Frinton-on-Sea call 01255 672269 or visit www.homeinstead.co.uk/frinton.
Photo caption- Member of Housing Group, Mayorof Biberach and Jean Allen