Generous grant enables home care franchise to open six companionship cafés

The Access Foundation provides much-needed backing for Home Instead Charities who are opening half-a-dozen new digital facilities for the elderly.

Generous grant enables home care franchise to open six companionship cafés

Thanks to a grant of over £40k, Home Instead Charities are moving full steam ahead with their plans to open six companionship cafés across England. The leading home care franchise is dedicated to providing elderly members of the community with a life full of happiness and companionship.

And Home Instead is hoping that these six companionship cafés, will bring ageing adults together on a regular basis, to offer fulfilment in their later years. Home Instead Charities announced recently that they have received a grant worth £43,750, from The Access Foundation, which will enable them to open these cafés in York, Southampton, Lewes, Dudley, Doncaster and East Herts.

The charity has indicated that more of these companionship hubs will be launched later in 2023. The cafés will offer elderly members of the public, a hot drink, good company and friendship, as well as free help and support with using the internet and online services. These outlets will be stocked with tablets and other electronic equipment purchased with money from the grant.

By making computer equipment and support readily available, Home Instead Charities are hoping to bridge the digital divide for older UK adults. This is an objective fully supported by The Access Foundation too.

Home Instead Charities are seeking volunteers to assist at these locations. The volunteers will help to run the cafés, while working closely with local franchise owners. The charity is keen to make all elderly local residents aware of these cafes and to ensure that clients, along with the wider community, have an opportunity to attend.

Home Instead is the only home care franchise to have its own charity, focused on preventing loneliness, while bringing happiness and joy into the lives of the ageing population. They already organise days out and music therapy groups via their business partners across the UK.

Piers McLeish, a trustee of The Access Foundation, said “We are delighted to support the work of Home Instead Charities which makes a real difference to the older generation. Many of these people rely on home care services and find themselves vulnerable and isolated from society. The cafés will make the online world more accessible for the older generation through technology.

“Many older adults are unable to afford luxuries such as smartphones and tablets, and therefore miss out on doing simple tasks such as booking a GP appointment, or online shopping, or simply connecting with friends and family. The cafés will provide a welcoming place for older people to learn how to use technology. This will enable them to become more connected and self-sufficient in later life.”

Speaking about the generous funding, Penny Hamer, the executive director of Home Instead Charities, said: “We are so grateful to The Access Foundation. This grant will make a huge difference to local communities.

“These cafés will provide a fantastic source of advice and support. They also offer an opportunity for those seeking companionship, where they can meet up in a warm, friendly environment. We can’t wait to promote these cafes and we hope to attract and increase a number of volunteers locally.”

About Home Instead: Starting out in the United States during the mid-1990s, the business established its UK base in 2005. They have more than 220 franchise offices across the UK, delivering over six million hours of quality care each year to more than 21,000 clients. The various franchise offices employ a total of over 10,000 caregivers, specialising in offering care and companionship in the home for older people. They also provide specialist dementia care, plus live-in care, end-of-life and respite care.

Their UK head office, which employs 80 people, is in Warrington, Cheshire.

With global head offices in Omaha, Nebraska, the company was founded by Paul and Lori Hogan. The franchise operates in four continents and has more than 1,100 offices worldwide. In addition to the United States, Great Britain and Ireland, Home Instead can also be found in Australia, Canada, China, Germany, Japan, Italy New Zealand, Netherlands, Singapore and Switzerland.

Andy Swales
Andy Swales