Health and social care are so often still seen as separate needs. In order to provide the best quality of life for older people in care and living at home, we need to address this divide. 

Our mission is to see older people’s mental, social and emotional wellbeing being prioritised alongside their physical care. We believe the work we do has had a profound impact on older people, carers and the wider sector.

Over the last year, we:

  • Delivered 1100 varied activity sessions benefitting over 3500 older people.  
  • Trained 293 care staff in meaningful engagement, boosting their skills and confidence, and embedding best practice.  
  • Supported over 200 carers with training, support and guidance
  • Engaged over 200 volunteers
  • Supported over 850 old and young people to build intergenerational connections
  • Launched our innovative Alive on Demand online streaming service, providing dementia-friendly videos to entertain, educate and engage older people and their carers.

“I really appreciate the Meeting Centre sessions you run, because for those 5 hours, Alive is doing the heavy lifting and I can relax… You guys are helping to keep me going and keep me sane. Thank you.” 


“It’s medicinal. If you don’t have things like this, you’ll get depressed, and low, and end up in hospital and that will cost them a fortune. They need things like this to keep people going.”

Participant in our gardening session.

“We’ve loved having your sessions, they’ve brought some joy and fun into the home”; “It left the room uplifted… the room came alive.”; “The interaction with residents has been very successful, bringing many smiles and much laughter”

Care Home Staff

In our last care home survey: 

  • 100% of staff said that Alive activity sessions lift the moods of residents           
  • 89% of staff said that knowledge and understanding of person-centred care has improved as a result of Alive training and activities in the home  
  • 100% of staff said that Alive activity sessions encourage interaction 


We want to show the impact our work and we believe in the importance of evaluating all our sessions and project work.   

Our work has been independently evaluated by Willis Newson and Professor Norma Daykin from University of West of England using the ArtsObs tool. This tool is cited by Public Health England and Professor Daykin is a Project Partner in PHE’s new guidance on evaluating arts projects and programmes that seek to improve health and wellbeing.  

The Willis Newson report states:

 This evaluation suggests that Alive activities impact positively on the mental and emotional wellbeing of those who participate. The workshops provide enjoyable activity, enabling social connections between residents and staff within the care settings, and giving participants opportunities to demonstrate skills, knowledge and to experience a sense of pride and achievement. Activities are observed to provide a ‘lift’ to the physical and mental energy levels of the older people who take part.

“Alive is valued by care managers and staff for the impact it has upon individuals in their care and for the sensitivity it displays towards them.” 

Click HERE to read the report. 

Influence and advocacy  

We advocate for improved quality of life for older people in care homes and who are living at home, working with partners in the voluntary, public, private and academic sectors to raise awareness and change attitudes. 

Some of our key achievements include: 

  • Innovating pioneering Community Engagement Work, in conjunction with My Home Life through our 3 year Making Pals project.   
  • Producing two Best Practice Guides for Bristol City Council– one aimed at care home managers and the other targeting care home staff. 
  • Working with Bristol City Council to define quality of life standards for their new care home service specification and helped to rewrite the new specification. 
  • Advising and providing feedback to SCIE on new guidance notes designed to get more people living with dementia in care engaged with new technology and the internet. 
  • Advising and providing feedback to NICE on new guidance notes on activity in care homes 
  • Regularly speaking at National Conferences sharing best practice 

Case studies

Click through below to read some of our favourite case studies that showcase the variety of work that we do;

John’s Gardening Activity

Our allotment helps so many people, and it’s a wonderful space to spend time in. For John, being at the allotment has “bought the old John” back.

John’s Meeting Centre activity

John attends our Meeting Centre group in North Somerset every week and has valued the activity and support provided. However, it has really helped his wife who is his main carer too, providing her with support and friendship too.

Tilly’s memories

Residents at one Bristol home we visit regularly are all living with dementia, and have a wide range of interests and backgrounds. Some are much more cognitively able than others, so there is a diverse range of needs for the staff to accommodate.