People ageing without children report that they can feel marginalised, disconnected and excluded from their local community and wider society. They are unable to share the experience of being a parent or grandparent and they have to deal with thoughtless or tactless comments about not being parents. Often they feel unable to talk about their own circumstances because it is too painful or because they are part of a community that may already face social stigma and isolation.
This means that people ageing without children do not always feel comfortable in mainstream groups for older people or even if they do attend, may not feel comfortable opening up about their lives and issues. Connecting with other people in a similar situation or with similar experiences can help reduce this feeling of isolation.
AWOC groups give people ageing without children the opportunity to form friendships, connections and their own communities as well as to raise awareness of the issues that affect them locally and nationally.
The purpose of this Resource Pack is to help organisations run local groups for people ageing without children.
We recommend that organisations planning to use this pack ensure that staff and volunteers have first attended one or both of our training courses:
You will need to register before downloading our guide to running groups for people ageing without children
This short briefing paper sets out the key data on people ageing without children and gives an overview of the main issues and their current and future impact.
You will need to register before downloading the briefing paper.
SEE INTERVIEWS WITH AWWOC
Our Voices Report (2016) details the experiences and thoughts of a hitherto invisible group of older people: those ageing without children. It contains individual stories of people ageing without children and highlights common themes and challenges they face.
The report identifies six key issues affecting people ageing without children:
Judgment and assumptions;
Disconnect from younger generations;
The lack of practical support;
The challenges of being a carer; and
The absence of someone to tell their story.
And recommends a number of solutions to tackle the issue including:
A national strategy;
Investment in advocacy and intergenerational projects;
Better access to advice to help plan for later life; and
Education and social awareness;
You will need to register before downloading Our Voices Report.
Ageing Well Without Children is a UK based organisation for people resident in the UK.
All the organisations listed likewise work in the UK. We are not able, at this time, to provide resources or support for those ageing without children outside the UK.