Storytelling games for older people

Co-creation of an augmented board game, with and for older people, to encourage social connection and reminiscing

Currently, over a quarter of adults over 65 are socially isolated. In the UK alone, over a million older adults go more than a month without speaking to friends, family or neighbours, and 1.4 million are chronically lonely. Loneliness is associated with increased risk of dementia, heart disease, poor mental health and early death. Our project aims to reduce loneliness in older adults, particularly those of low socioeconomic status (SES), through the design of an augmented reality board game that facilitates storytelling, reminiscing, and capturing and celebrating lives. This will be a novel, enjoyable and engaging way for older adults to get to know new people easily within their community, as well as build and deepen relationships with each other, their families, friends and wider society. The game will be co-created with residents of Whiteley Village retirement community, in partnership with Play Well for Life and Zinc

The project is funded by the Healthy Ageing Catalyst fund at a cost of £62,475, and runs from 1st Sept 2021 for nine months.

Research project team

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Dr Sarah Campbell

Principal investigator

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Alison Benzimra

Advisor, Whiteley Homes Trust

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Digital World Research Centre
Alan Turing Building
University of Surrey
Guildford
Surrey
GU2 7XH