Working with Age UK to increase awareness of the risks posed by financial scams through a new Scams Prevention and Victim Support toolkit

Staff from within the National Centre for Post-Qualifying Social Work and professional Practice (NCPQSWPP) at Bournemouth University have been working with Age UK London to develop a learning package about the risks posed by financial scams. This builds on a body of work undertaken by the NCPQSWPP over the past three years investigating financial abuse from scams. This work has involved collaboration with key partners from across the public, voluntary, financial and law enforcement sectors, including the Chartered Trading Standards Institute, National Trading Standards Scams Team, Royal Mail, the Burdett Trust for Nursing and Action Fraud. In partnership with these agencies we are committed to developing both professional and public understanding of the risks posed by financial scams.

Our recent collaboration with Age UK London has resulted in the development of a new ‘Scams Prevention and Victim Support toolkit’ which is currently being trialled at 4 sites in London. This has been funded by the City Bridge Trust, to work in partnership with Action Fraud’s Economic Crime Victim Care Unit (ECVCU), to support older people who are at a high risk of being or who have been scammed.

Professor Lee-Ann Fenge and Dr Sally ran a two day ‘Train the Trainers’ work shop in January at Age UK London for staff and volunteers who will cascade this learning throughout their local branches. The aim is to increase awareness of the risks posed by involvement in financial scams to older adults. Alongside the learning materials themselves, learning tools and games to engage the public in discussions about the risks posed by financial scams were also given in the learning packs. These learning tools were originally designed by Dr Sally Lee and Emily Rosenorn-Lanng from the NCPQSW as public engagement tools for use in the Science Tent at Glastonbury Festival last year. They proved very successful at this event, and subsequently at the Bournemouth Air Festival, in engaging members of the public in discussion about financial scams and how to protect against them. These have been refined to focus specifically on the context of financial scams experienced by older adults.

For more information about NCPQSW and their work, visit http://www.ncpqsw.com/