From February 2020, Age UK West Sussex, Brighton & Hove and Age UK Horsham District will be working together in a close partnership, to provide services for older people in the area. The partnership, which may lead to a full merger, allows the charities to share their expertise, resources and local knowledge, ensuring services are sustainable and able to help more people than ever before.
Existing services will continue to be delivered by dedicated staff and volunteers in Horsham and it is anticipated that the partnership will allow the development of new activities and support options for people aged 50+. Overheads will also be reduced, meaning more of each donation can be directly invested in services.
Maureen Vallon, Chair of Age UK Horsham District said “The decision to work with Age UK West Sussex, Brighton & Hove like this makes perfect sense. Rather than compete in the same area, we can now pool our resources, to create the best possible services in terms of choice and quality. Whether it’s loneliness, frailty, money worries or just an empty social calendar, we’re proud people in Horsham District can turn to us. Both charities are ambitious and our vision is to keep growing, so we can be here for older people for many years to come.”
Helen Rice, Chief Executive at Age UK West Sussex, Brighton & Hove said “After a successful merger with Age UK Brighton & Hove, we know first-hand how pooling resources makes charities more efficient and effective. Older people can only benefit as we look to expand what we’re offering, while still keeping the local focus which is so vital. I’m really excited about the future as we continue to support, inform, campaign and keep older people at the heart of everything we do.”
Age UK West Sussex, Brighton & Hove and Age UK Horsham District are brand partners of Age UK National, but exist as separate entities, each with their own Board of Trustees and separate finances. Both organisations have wonderful staff and volunteers who are committed to improving the lives of older people, so Trustees and management will work with them to preserve and enhance services. Age UK West Sussex, Brighton & Hove is presently providing support by filling staffing gaps at Age UK Horsham District that have arisen through vacancies.
Age UK West Sussex, Brighton & Hove helps approximately 15,000 older people a year, tackling a range of issues like poverty, social care and loneliness. The charity provides information, advice and services for those who need help or support. Age UK Horsham District has a number of services in common with its larger partner, as well as some unique offerings like rural outreach. The collaboration allows each of the charities to benefit immediately, while undertaking discussions about merging in the near future.