A north east Fife organisation for older people is participating in detailed academic research into retirement.
Members of Cupar U3A (University of the Third Age) are providing data which could help to shape understanding of how best to develop more effective services for retired people.
Approved by Edinburgh University and Fife Health and Social Care Partnership, the study is investigating wellbeing in retirement and in particular, how it is affected by psychological factors.
The academic behind the initiative believes she has found in Cupar U3A, an ideal partner organisation for the research.
“The research project is called wellbeing in retirement, and that’s a phrase that sums up everything that Cupar U3A is about,” said Frances Stuart, a clinician with NHS Fife’s psychological services based in Stratheden Hospital.
“I’m delighted that this organisation, which does so much to help retired and semi-retired people throughout north east Fife to lead fulfilling lives, has agreed to help out with this research.”
Ms Stuart, a trainee clinical psychologist, added: “Although many people see retirement as a positive life event, up to one third of retirees find that the transition is stressful or experience a decline in wellbeing after retirement.
“We want to understand that better and believe our findings, along with other research, could help to inform decisions on care and services for older people.”
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Veronica Kirk, who chairs the nine-year-old Cupar U3A, said: “Anything that helps to make life better, safer and more rewarding for older people can only be a good thing, which is why we have teamed up with Frances to participate in this important research.
“We are urging our 250 members to take part in what is a very comprehensive survey and hope that their feedback will help to drive future decisions and policy affecting retired people.”
The research takes the form of an anonymous, confidential questionnaire focusing on the role psychological factors may play on retired people’s wellbeing.
Participants in the survey, who are all aged over 50, are being asked about themselves, their health, interests and financial position, as well about their thoughts and feelings about retirement.
Retired people who wish to take part in the research can request a questionnaire pack from Frances by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling or 01334 696336.