The Big Lottery Fund plans to help elderly people lead more fulfilling lives with an app


An app that alerts off-duty medics to life-threatening emergencies, schemes to support stroke survivors and projects to combat loneliness are among a series of initiatives getting almost £10 million to help the elderly lead more fulfilling lives.

The Big Lottery Fund has earmarked the money for three projects to help older people be healthier and challenge traditional notions of ageing.

National Lottery Lotto tickets
(Yui Mok/PA)

The schemes involve new services and technologies that enable communities to reduce loneliness and isolation, and help people access support and information that can improve their physical health.

Over the next 17 years, the number of people aged 65 or over is expected to rise by more than 40% to 16 million, according to Age UK, and by 2040 nearly one in four people will be 65 or over.

The projects aim to create a society where older people are more valued and can play a more active role in decisions that affect their lives.

Innovation charity Nesta has received £5.48 million to fund eight projects, including ones helping those affected by strokes and respiratory conditions and the GoodSAM app to alert people with medical training to emergencies nearby.

Hands of an elderly woman
(John Stillwell/PA)

Social enterprise organisation The Age Of No Retirement was given almost £500,000 for a project to bring together business, Government, the media and the public, while the Design Council charity received £3.65 million for a programme to develop and deliver new solutions for older people in their communities.

Dawn Austwick, chief executive of the Big Lottery Fund, said: "These projects challenge existing notions of how we support older people.

"By involving them in designing new services and technologies, we are putting them in the driving seat and enabling them to reap the most benefit.

"This gives people a greater stake in their lives and communities, and delivers more personalised and sustainable approaches to health and social care."