I’ve attempted to pull together a definitive list of the links to older adult service providers in Bucks. I’ve also added many available in Oxon. All of them know and support their Local Authority (LA) older adult care services.
Useful national links
You can find the carers support group near you at the bottom of this Carers UK page.
Services differ across Oxon and Bucks (and other) LA county boundaries. This is one of the frustrating things about care services when compared to (national) health services. One of the reasons why you may have found accessing help difficult. I hope the links below help.
If I’ve missed any service providers out, just let me know, I’ll be delighted to add more. Email or call them first to confirm they cover your area. Similar services will (I hope) exist outside Oxon and Bucks too, so can use them as references to help you explore a different LA.
I promote relevant events as I come across them @maudandmum on the socials too.
Oxon/Bucks service providers that support living at home
Buckinghamshire Council has an assisted recycling and bin collection service for those who can’t easily put out and bring in their bins every week. You need to be either aged 75 or over, have a certified short or long term medical condition or be registered with a disability. Other local authorities may have similar services.
Age UK Bucks help older people achieve and maintain their independence. Contact them for access to free services such as advice, welfare benefit checks, a telephone befriending service and ‘befriending plus’ home visits. I use their access to local pre-screened (pay as you go) handy people, chiropodists, hairdressers, computer training, home help, garden maintenance and home relocation support. They love to hear from potential volunteers too. Here is the national Age UK site so you can search for support by postcode.
Bucks Prevention Matters is a free short term service for over 18s who don’t receive Bucks County Council funded Social Care. The service helps people with or recovering from illness build an independent and fulfilling life. This might include making new friends, improving health, feeling confident and safe, learning new skills or hobbies and more. It covers Bucks and Milton Keynes. Referral by GP, carer, family member or self-referral to see a Community Practise Worker.
Care Advice Bucks also provides information about available care services for Bucks residents, whether at home or in residential care.
Dementia UK offers specialist support from Admiral Nurses. Unfortunately not yet in Bucks but they do operate in Oxon if the person living with dementia resides in an Order of the St John Care Trust home.
Local memory service providers
Wherever you live, if you’re worried about your memory, the Alzheimer’s Society offers a range of memory support services including info and advice, support groups and other help to stay independent. They also organise singing groups and foster dementia friendly environments in the community.
Bucks Mind used to offer two clubs for older adults living with dementia or memory loss in Chesham and Prestwood, but post-covid, these seem to have been removed. Both aimed to support independence for as long as possible. However, there are other groups and new options around the county through this link that could be helpful (they don’t specifically exclude people living with dementia, you’d need to check). Self-referral is possible too.
For those with an early-onset dementia diagnosis, Bucks Mind used to offer a six-week course to help maintain wellness (but I can’t find it anymore), try asking about it. Here’s the national Mind site too.
Lindengate is a mental health charity in Wendover (Bucks) that offers specialised gardening activities that help those over 16 with mental health needs, including dementia. I’ve not been yet, but by all accounts, it’s a marvellous place. Your GP or healthcare professional can refer you or you can self refer (from their website).
As for NHS Bucks I couldn’t find much on their site about dementia or mental impairment support when I used their search function (feel free to put me right), but it’s a useful resource for other Bucks health matters.
Local care service providers
Healthwatch Bucks and Healthwatch Oxon are the equivalent of Tripadvisor for Bucks and Oxon health and social care service providers. Bucks service users like us can rate or give feedback to local hospitals, social care services or dentists etc, often driving change that benefits all. These are also the organisations to contact if you would like information and advice on a specific service provider too.
Local carer support service providers
Carers Bucks. If someone relies on you for help or can’t manage without you, then this team can support you. For info, advice, training and access to support groups. They’ve supported me through some particularly challenging times.
Carers Oxfordshire provides similar support to Carers Bucks. Pre-covid they used to have an emergency support care service (usually 1 to 48 hours in length, depending on need) should a carer themselves have an emergency and be unable to care. But I can’t it now (Feb 2022).
Local health and fitness service providers
Live Well Stay Well help find the support needed to get healthier e.g. stop smoking, get more active, reduce stress etc. For all ages in Bucks.
Active Bucks helps all Bucks residents access selected activity sessions (often including a free trial session voucher).
Simply Walking 30 minutes a day is one of the most important ways of protecting our health as we age. Join in or volunteer to lead organised walks in Bucks.
Local transport service providers
If transport support is what’s needed, check out Bucks County Council community transport and the Chilterns Dial-a-Ride service. It looks like the Aylesbury Vale travel token scheme has been withdrawn, but you can find out about their other services here.
If you’re lucky enough to live in and around Haddenham, check out this wonderful service that offers free (donations welcome) door to door transport in a purpose-built vehicle for disabled people and their carers. Local people use this Haddenham Community Vehicle to visit the shops, friends, relatives, clinics and hospitals.
Help with safeguarding
Bucks and Surrey trading standards’ remit includes helping protect older residents from cold calling and scams, offering useful door stickers.
Good luck x