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News from the Leveson Centre for the study of Ageing, Spirituality and Social Policy


In this issue:  

The Narratives of Old Age Thursday 12 March 2009

Alzheimer’s and Dementia Annual Evidence Update

New books

The Open University wants your views on The Price of Old Age

Celebrating Age in Worship: Suggestions and Resources

Age Agenda Bulletin

Older people admiringf the view

Leveson Centre Seminar:
The Narratives of Old Age
Thursday 12 March 2009

In this seminar James Woodward will introduce some of the practical fruits of his three months’ sabbatical leave in 2008. In three sessions he will explore the nature of narrative, the stories that we share, and how these narratives shape our lives. Session one will introduce participants to some of the themes of narrative and draw out the pastoral and practical implications of these theories for old age and old age care. In the second session James will share some examples of old age narrative (biography and autobiography) and explore their interest and significance. In session three we shall look at some of the implications of theory (session one) and practice (session two) for ourselves, for older people and our work with them.

For full details see http://www.leveson.org.uk/levesoncentre/progdetails.htm

Alzheimer’s and Dementia Annual Evidence Update
The National Library for Health Later Life Specialist Library has launched the Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia Annual Evidence Update 2008 http://www.library.nhs.uk/laterlife

The Annual Evidence Update aims to provide healthcare professionals with a clear path to the most important recent evidence surrounding the five major types of dementias: Alzheimer’s; Vascular dementia; Dementia with lewy bodies; Frontotemporal dementia; and mixed dementias.

The Dementia AEU provides bibliographies and clinical commentary on secondary research (systematic reviews, meta analyses and guidelines) from the last 14 months for the following topics:

  • Definitions, Diagnosis and screening
  • Risk factors and aetiology
  • Pharmacological treatments
  • Non-pharmacological treatments
  • Rehabilitation, practice and care standards
  • Evidence on other Dementias.

European Research Area in Ageing (ERA-AGE) Website
We are pleased to announce our 'new look' website. For access please click on the following link: http://www.era-age.group.shef.ac.uk/

What's New on AARP
Don't forget to check out What's New on AARP Policy & Research at: http://www.aarp.org/research/whatsnew.html

Center for Aging Services Technologies
The Center for Aging Services Technologies (CAST) is leading the charge to expedite the development, evaluation and adoption of emerging technologies that will transform the ageing experience. See: http://www.agingtech.org/index.aspx

Putting Care Right Campaign
Home from Home: a report highlighting opportunities for improving standards of dementia care in care homes. http://www.alzheimers.org.uk/downloads/home_from_home_full_report_2_.pdf . Published in 2007 as part of the Alzheimer's Society's (UK) Putting Care Right Campaign, this document reports on a survey distributed to caregivers, care home managers, and care home staff, which aimed to gain an up-to-date understanding of the perceptions of the quality of dementia care provided in care homes and recommending action to improve the quality of all homes.
The report is organized into the following chapters:

  • Dementia care in care homes;
  • Activities, engagement and occupation;
  • Involvement of friends and families;
  • Challenges in providing good dementia care; and
  • Summary and key recommendations.

Interspersed in the report are narratives from caregivers, highlights of the literature, and key points and recommendations which will be of interest to all staff working in nursing homes, and will contribute to the growing body of knowledge on family involvement; on a person-centred training approach for care workers; and the importance of activity involvement for dementia residents.

Journal of Quality Research in Dementia
Produced by the Alzheimer's Society (UK), this free online research journal focuses on new research findings, targeting a variety of different important topics in each issue.
The May 2008 issue of the journal focuses on policy and contains:

  • An overview of the Home from Home‚ Report
  • Development and evaluation of a multi-level activity-based model of care
  • Training staff for people with dementia in care homes

Previous issues of the journal have both a scientific version and summary for non-scientists. see http://www.alzheimers.org.uk/site/scripts/documents.php?categoryID=200299


Self, Senility, and Alzheimer's Disease in Modern America: A History
(2006) by Jesse F. Ballenger, Johns Hopkins University Press.

Ageing Societies: A Comparative Introduction
Virpi Timonen, April 2008

This book aims to convince readers that ageing is not boring, threatening or depressing, but that it has enormous relevance for the young and the old alike. Virpi Timonen provides an engaging introduction to the central social, economic and political aspects and impacts of ageing and makes the case for the importance of analysing ageing from a number of different perspectives. Using comparative international data, the author provides a detailed description of the process of population ageing, including increasing longevity, changes in fertility and variations in the health status of older populations. See: http://www.mcgraw-hill.co.uk/html/0335222692.html

Ageing in a consumer society
Ian Rees Jones, Martin Hyde, Christina R. Victor, Richard D. Wiggins, Chris Gilleard and Paul Higgs. 

This book provides a unique critical perspective on the changing nature of later life by examining the engagement of older people with consumer society in Britain since the 1960s.

For more information please see: www.policypress.org.uk   

The Open University wants your views on The Price of Old Age
This is a message from Sheila Peace & Caroline Holland, members of the Centre for Ageing and Biographical Studies at the Open University.  

Do you have something to say about the future of adult social care?  or are you interested in Extra-care Housing?
The OU is conducting an online survey to guage public attitudes to care, health, accommodation and many other issues associated with ageing.  This is information that will feed into the government's consultation on adult social care and the forthcoming green paper.
The aim out the OU survey is to uncover both the level of information people currently have about the situation facing their elders and what their own views and ideas are.  Also, what problems they imagine they will face when they reach their 60s and beyond.
The contributions will allow us to contribute to mapping the current 'state-of-play' between people's perceptions and the reality of life older people in the UK.
The survey can be found at http://www.open2.net/caresurvey/index.html
The survey will conclude and the findings made public in 2009 but interrim findings will be released to coincide with a forthcoming Open Unviersity/BBC documentary series about life in a retirement community.
Media Contact g.r.bailey@open.ac.uk  +(44) 1908 653248
Coming this Autumn :
a new BBS/OU series looking at life in extra care housing. The documentary series of six half-hour programmes is an Open University/BBC co-production for BBC One for Autumn 2008.
The OU academic consultants are:
Professor Sheila Peace  s.m.peace@open.ac.uk
Dr. Caroline Holland  c.a.holland@open.ac.uk

Celebrating Age in Worship: Suggestions and Resources
Leveson Paper Number Eighteen

  • Are you planning a service for or about older people?
  • Do you want suggestions for hymns, prayers and readings (biblical and non-biblical)?
  • Would you find it useful to have three addresses on ageing by distinguished speakers?

If so, this publication could be exactly what you need.

At its core are three addresses given at services in celebration of age by Richard Harries, then Bishop of Oxford, Ronald Blythe, well-known author and columnist for The Church Times, and John Sentamu, then Bishop of Birmingham. These suggest themes that can be taken up when celebrating age in worship as well as providing a fund of useful quotations and illustrations.

They are complemented by suggestions for seventeen Bible readings, eight poetry and prose readings from other sources, twenty hymns and seven prayers. The publication concludes with a comprehensive list of resources both for celebrating age services and for leading worship in care homes generally and more specifically for people with dementia.

This paper costs £4.00 including postage and packing or downloaded for £3.00. Orders enclosing a cheque payable to The Foundation of Lady Katherine Leveson should be sent to the address below. Alternatively copies can be ordered on line using a credit card on our website http://www.leveson.org.uk/levesoncentre/publications.htm

Age Agenda Bulletin
The Age Agenda Bulletin is produced by Age Concern’s Policy Unit and provides a monthly web-based update on older people’s issues.

We think it’s unique in that it brings together the latest policy developments from a range of areas in one publication. It covers income and finance, health, social care, housing and communities, equality and human rights, work and learning, society and government, politics and consumer and transport issues – and is therefore an essential tool to keep those working with, or with an interest in, older people abreast of the latest developments.

Articles are written by our policy advisers. They are concise and provide a direct link to source documents for further information. Subscription is free, and subscribers receive a monthly email alert when the latest issue is available on our website. The attached page shows a screen capture of the editorial page and two sample articles from the October issue. To view the latest issue online, go to http://www.ageconcern.org.uk/AgeConcern/age_agenda_bulletin.asp

If you would like to subscribe, please reply to this email so that we can add your email address to our distribution list – or fill in and return the form below to Diana Fawcett, Age Concern Policy Unit, 1268 London Road, London SW16 4ER.
Alternatively you can subscribe online via the above link.

Diana Fawcett, Information & Communications Officer
Age Concern England Tel: 020 8765 7452

Fresh expressions podcast
You can also catch up on Fellowship at Grannies - a fresh expression which meets in a tea shop in Nottinghamshire - on next months podcast. Download the podcast here

Arms of Lady Katherine Leveson

The Leveson Centre
is part of
The Foundation of Lady Katherine Leveson
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Temple Balsall, Knowle, Solihull, West Midlands B93 0AL

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