The Cares Family is no longer operational – this website is for information only
Our core programmes

2011-2023: Our local programmes

From 2011-2023, five local Cares Family charities brought together some 30,000 older and younger people across London, Liverpool and Manchester. We swam against a tide of increasing loneliness, division and the feeling that we don’t belong in the rapidly changing places around us.

How we built connection

Our local charities each ran four core programmes to build community and connection across the cities they were based in. These programmes were fundamental to how we brought people (we called them neighbours) together to create meaningful social connection across different generations and backgrounds.

Social Clubs

Social Clubs were group activities that offered older and younger neighbours the chance to share time, laughter, new experiences and friendship. Three to six sessions a week in each of our city locations included dance parties, walking tours, new technology workshops, ‘Desert Island Discs’ nights, local history sessions and more. We kept our clubs as varied and fresh as possible to ensure they were welcoming and safe spaces for all our neighbours.

Love Your Neighbour

Love Your Neighbour brought older and younger neighbours together to build one-to-one friendships and to help people build memories and meaning. Friends spent one or two hours a week having a chat, playing board games or sharing a meal to gain a little extra reflection and pause – bringing the outside world in for people who might struggle to get out, or who preferred one-to-one connection.


Our proactive Outreach was how we identified and invited older and younger neighbours to be part of the community. We met older people through door-knocking, at chemists and GP surgeries, supermarkets, libraries, pubs, faith groups, community centres and through incoming referrals. And we reached young people through community engagement, powerful online storytelling, partnerships with corporates and through growing social networks. Our Outreach teams also worked with partners across the public, community and private sectors to help keep people connected to services available to them.

Community Fundraising

Community Fundraising offered a fourth way for younger and older neighbours to share new experiences and to connect to the changing world. Events, challenges, partnerships and online campaigns all offered the chance for neighbours to share camaraderie, as well as to raise the funds that keep all their activities free. Through these activities, all neighbours had the chance to fund the communities they loved.

The principles and techniques that underpin our model

In 2023, The Cares Family published a report, Building Connection: Exploring What Works. The report outlined the ten techniques that The Cares Family used to build meaningful connection between people of different generations and backgrounds. It also explained how the principles of authenticity and reciprocity underpinned all of our work.

Want to find out more?

  • To find out more about how we supported others to adopt our programmes across the UK through Ripple Effect, please click here
  • To find out more about the impact of our programmes, please click here