Vincles BCN is a social innovation project that seeks to strengthen the social relationships of senior citizens who feel alone in Barcelona and to improve their well-being through ICT.
In the last quarter of 2016, a pilot test will commence in the neighbourhood of the old Esquerra de l’Eixample, and it is planned to extend the project to the neighbourhoods of new Esquerra de l’Example, Els Besòs i el Maresme, Sant Martí de Provençals, and La Verneda i la Pau at the beginning of 2017.
Population ageing is a global phenomenon, and in recent years a number of studies have been conducted concerning loneliness among senior citizens and its negative effects on their mental and physical health.
The Vincles BCN service seeks to empower the elderly in the management of their relationships, using an application installed on tablets that the city council provides to users of the service.
The application is based around two networks: the personal network and the user group. The personal network is the user’s own network, in other words, their family and friends. The project seeks to strengthen relationships and enhance communication between members of this group. The aim of the user group is to create a community of senior citizens using the Vincles service in the neighbourhood who share interests. In this network, there is a facilitator who fosters participation among users to bring them closer to the people and services in the local neighbourhood and the new activities in the city.
The project thus seeks to bring people together and strengthen their relationships, at the same time as creating new ones. For this reason, regular communication is therefore promoted via ICT technologies, while face-to-face meetings are also encouraged.
What is the profile of a Vincles BCN user?
Be 65 years old or over.
Be a registered resident of Barcelona.
Have a personal network of family and friends with at least two people in it.
Have a desire to maintain active social relationships.
Desire to broaden their relationships and acquaintances.
Speak Catalan and/or Spanish.