Key learning: flexible projects

By working alongside our delivery partners, using a test and learn approach, we have found that one size doesn’t fit all and projects need to be flexible in their design and approach.

There is a need for flexibility in the way that projects are designed and developed. A trusted relationship between the funder and project is vital in ensuring that staff feel able and supported to be creative in their approach and keep the needs of the older person at the centre of what they are trying to achieve.

Time to Shine projects have shown flexibility in:

  • finding older people - going to the places older people are, where they already access.
  • supporting people in a way that suits them, including through home visits, the frequency of meetings and the length of involvement in a project.
  • having the confidence to change or adapt the project plan.

Throughout the programme the complexity of loneliness on individual has been staggering. The ability of a project to be flexible and responsive to individual needs has led to greater individual outcomes.

Learning links

Time to Shine reports

Food for thought: community connections through shared meals (Time to Shine, January 2020)
More resources on the importance of food in reducing social isolation

Reports from other Ageing Better programmes

National reports

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