Age Concern undergoes rebrand with new logo
- Credit: Archant
PHOTOGRAPHY BY SARA CUFF
One of Lancashire’s best-loved charities has launched a funky, eye-catching new image and, at the same time, released some news that will take many by surprise. Age Concern Central Lancashire has rebranded to give itself a dynamic new feel designed to get the message across that, after 35 years, the charity remains fully independent, is stronger than ever and despite its name, is not devoted solely to helping older people. Their ambition is to show Age Concern as a friendly, innovative, people-focused local charity, but one that is available to all adults regardless of age or circumstance.
As Iain Pearson, the executive director, explains: ‘We know that some people have a fixed view about Age Concern and who we support and that people often get the charity confused with other organisations that provide services to older people . We hope the new brand will address these misperceptions by giving Age Concern a unique and identifiable image. ‘The charity can help adults from 18 to 118 and treats people as people irrespective of their age..’ Officials at the charity have worked with Lancaster-based Fat Media and they revealed their new brand at a lunch time launch event staged in The Invincibles Lounge, Preston North End, to give people the opportunity to discover more about the services available through this trusted charity. Iain added: ‘We have worked extremely hard to earn our reputation as a provider of high quality services and, quite rightly, our trustees felt the charity deserved a brand that is dynamic and truly represents who we are. ‘At the launch event people stated the new brand instilled positivity and gave a sense of optimism and hope and challenged the stereotype that ageing is a negative concept. The new style has been designed to set the charity apart by using bright colours and eye-catching images to convey the message of Age Concern as an independent charity that exists to help people “Live Well and Age Well” whatever their age, gender or status.’
Age Concern has been described as being a lot more to a lot more and delivers a broad range of services that aim to increase peoples independence and improve their quality of life. Their offer ranges from pioneering dementia services whereby specialist staff use new and innovative techniques to ensure people diagnosed with memory concerns are supported in ways that reflect their individuality, needs and preferences and whereby families and carers can access practical information and guidance. Age Concern’s two main dementia hubs are located at the Charnley Fold Enhanced Day Centre in Bamber Bridge and Withy Trees Day Centre in Fulwood. Teams of staff also work within the community as well. There is also a range of services designed to help older people remain independent including nail cutting, benefits advice and home help services through to more complex provision such as hospital aftercare services which help to get adults out of hospital and safely back into their homes. The service plays a crucial role in helping people maintain their independence whilst also avoiding hospital admission and re-admission. In addition Age Concern operates five, soon to be six, retail outlets and can help with family estate planning such as free wills, family protection trusts and funeral plans. There is also the Lancashire Wellbeing Service and, as Iain says, this is available to people aged 18 and over and frequently supports younger adults. It offers short-term practical support for people with emotional, physical and social issues such as anxiety, long term health conditions and a lack of social networks. With 126 staff and several centres to maintain, the charity relies increasingly on the generosity of people – especially the 370 volunteers and the thousands who shop at its retail stores which generate much needed income that is used to support vulnerable people in local communities. Customers will have seen these being re-branded in line with the new image and the website has also been given an exciting new look to enhance the charity’s digital profile. Iain adds: ‘As a local charity, we punch well above our weight and we have built up a good reputation ‘We achieved what we wanted – to present a message that is new, fresh and different’ ‘We recognised that we haven’t been pro-active enough in promoting ourselves and people referred to us as a “best kept secret.” That was nice to hear but it’s not really where we want to be. We are confident the new brand will be a force for change and reflect our role as a unique charity.’
More than 100 local people were at the launch and, while change can often be controversial,Iain and his colleagues were delighted with the responses. ‘Branding is very subjective and when you are trying to convey a different message about who you are and what you do you will always start a discussion. People gave us a lot of feedback and we have taken on board what they said. ‘But the strongest feedback we received was one that was positive and gave us a great deal of optimism. And we achieved what we wanted – to start a new conversation, to raise our profile and to start to re-define peoples understanding of Age Concern Central Lancashire.’
You can find out more about Age Concern Central Lancashire at www.55plus.org.uk