The West Midlands Later Life Forum was established as a response to the government’s publication “Empowering Engagement: A Stronger Voice for Older People”. The reference to “West Midlands” in the Forum’s name is to the West Midlands as a geographical region, not just the West Midlands county. As a region it consists of the counties of Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, Worcestershire, Herefordshire and, of course, the West Midlands.
The Forum convenes, and engages with, those involved in later life issues: local older people as individuals, representative organisations of older people, and statutory and third sector provider organisations. The Forum feeds into and receives feedback from debates locally, regionally and nationally, at the quarterly meetings of the UK Advisory Forum on Ageing, at which the Region’s representatives meet regularly with two Ministers of State – from the Departments of Work and Pensions and Health.
The primary purpose of the Forum is to ensure that the voices of older people in the West Midlands Region are heard and that those voices contribute to an ongoing improvement in the independence, health and well-being of older people and also contribute to changes in society’s perceptions of older people and of the ageing process.
The Forum meets four times a year, usually in Birmingham, and arranges an annual open “Later Life Assembly” in March. Both the Forum meetings and the Assembly are open to members of the public.
For more details of when and where meetings are taking place, plus other information, go to the Forum’s web-site at www.wmllf.org.uk