Launched in May 2012, Independence Matters was a Design Challenge run in partnership with Innovate UK (formerly Technology Strategy Board) to develop services that promote independence in later life. One of seven inspiring start-ups funded through the challenge, Meet2Eat is a regional service for older adults that teaches a range of domestic, nutrition and kitchen basics to those that need it most, in a social setting.

The problem

Some older adults may have historically relied on their partner, family or care network for shopping, cooking and eating. If their situation changes they may not be equipped with the skills or knowledge to cook or shop for themselves, which can lead to malnutrition.

The solution

Meet2Eat is a regional service for older adults that teaches a range of domestic, nutritional and kitchen basics to those that need it most. The service engages with a variety of older adults, but primarily those whose circumstances mean that they have limited nutritional skills or confidence. People can be referred to the service via a GP, family member or carer.

The service is delivered through a combination of interactive demonstrations, group and solo activities and guided learning. A bespoke Meet2Eat app is used to evaluate each individual's particular needs and experience in conjunction with a structured course book called 'Your Recipe'.

The results

I live alone and need to improve my eating now I've been told I have diabetes... now I feel much more confident and enthusiastic about cooking and trying new things.

George, 70, Meet2Eat participant

The Meet2Eat service empowers the older adult to boost their own nutritional knowledge and skills in a social way – helping to prevent loneliness and encourage eating well, two key factors linked with independence in later life. The team behind Meet2Eat believes this progressive approach to eating, shopping and cooking helps blend modern nutritional thinking with the domestic needs and culinary habits of older adults. 

Find out more at rodd.uk.com/meet-2-eat-2

Resources