Conversation, culture and cake at the January HOP network

The quarterly meeting of the HOP network was held at the Everyman on 27th January, and it was great to see so many people there. We continued our traditions of hosting each meeting in a new venue to encourage members to get out and about, and of sampling the treats on offer while we were there. The Everyman’s carrot cake did not disappoint.

Members including Billy Hui and Becky Brooks at Sing Me Merseyside, Bisakha Sarker from Chaturangan, and Tracy Aston from PSS updated us on the delivery of their HOP Pot funded projects, and we’ll be sharing the details here on the blog very soon. We heard from Dil Daly, Chief Executive of Age Concern Liverpool and Sefton, about the ongoing work of the Ageing Better task groups.

This was the last scheduled meeting of the network, which has been funded in this financial year with the support of Liverpool City Council and National Museums Liverpool. We used some of the session to explore with partners what happens next, what has been useful about the HOP network, and how we should move forward. It was encouraging to find that the group were keen to see HOP continue. In particular, HOP members valued the opportunity to come together and meet people from other organisations who are working towards the same goal of improving the quality of life for older people in the Liverpool area, and who are facing the same challenges. They welcomed the information sharing service provided by HOP and felt that it could be developed. The availability of grant funding was valued because it meant that talk could be turned into action, even if on a small scale.

The Open Culture team are now actively seeking ways of continuing this work. The next few weeks will be spent on producing an evaluation which documents HOP’s work and impact to date, and exploring possible funding options so that we can keep going and keep growing. If you want to contribute to the discussion around the future of HOP, or your organisation can offer any practical or in-kind support, please email kate@culture.org.uk – we’d love to hear from you!

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