Volunteering and community participation
We want to ensure more people in their 50s and 60s can participate, offer mutual support and do things that matter to them in their communities.
We’re exploring what works to remove barriers for people in later life so they can contribute their skills, knowledge and experience to their communities and enjoy the benefits of taking part.
People who help out in their community – from everyday acts of neighbourliness to more formal volunteering roles – tend to be happier and to develop a better quality and quantity of relationships and sense of purpose in their lives.
Those who are less well off or have health concerns are much less likely to be able to contribute their time and talents, especially through formal volunteering.
Our joint review with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) into community contributions and volunteering sets out the barriers that make it difficult for people to take part. The review also offers six principles for engaging people and creating age-friendly and inclusive opportunities.
Following the review, Ageing Better and DCMS supported five projects around England to test these principles in practice and develop age-friendly and inclusive ways to widen and sustain the involvement of people in later life, regardless of their background.