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Healthy, independent lives

You told us that in Camden in 2025, you want 
everyone to be able to live a healthy, active and happy life,
remaining independent for as long as possible.

What are the issues?

You value the health services that are available locally, and recognise that there are many things people can do to keep themselves healthy.

However, there are concerns that government cuts have had an impact on health and support services.

Many of you are concerned that cuts or changes to services could mean that you will not have access to health services when you need them.

You also discussed the support needed to live independently for as long as possible in your local area.

You talked about long waits to see a GP, and having to explain health problems many times to different staff.

Some said that due to cuts, they are having to rely increasingly on unpaid carers or family members for support.

People told us about occasions when they had been bullied or abused because of a physical or mental health condition.

Some young people mentioned cuts to mental health services as a concern.

What you told us


“In the future I would like to see more proactive, radical measures to encourage people to be more active.”
William from Swiss Cottage, Citizens’ Assembly participant

“There are fewer support services for those who misuse substances, not just in Camden but nationwide. We need to put pressure on central government to ensure that drug dependency units are kept open and well-funded.”
Carers’ focus group participant

“I was terrified of social services. I thought, ‘Oh my goodness, I’ll lose my kids’, however social services have been incredibly open-minded and helpful. We are forging a path together.
Carer supporting a partner with very early dementia

Your ideas to tackle the issues

  • You want organisations to take more responsibility for improving the environment, for example radical action to tackle air pollution in Camden, more cycle lanes, food growing opportunities for people without gardens, and more signposting to help and advice to improve health.
  • To help residents take responsibility for their own health, some of you said it would help if health professionals spent more time building relationships so that they understand your strengths and what you can do.
  • Community partners said that facilities such as leisure centres need to be easy to access and at the heart of the community.
  • You are keen for more outdoor activities to be provided in Camden’s parks and open spaces to help with mental and physical health.
  • Young people said they want mental health services to be easier to access.
  • You want there to be more information and awareness raising of different illnesses and conditions, and you said that this should begin in schools.
  • Some residents with limited mobility mentioned that receiving help with adaptations to homes would enable them to live independently for longer. Others requested more accessible transport to help them get out and about.
  • Some vulnerable, working-age residents said that support with job hunting would help them to become more independent.
  • For some of you, help to tackle loneliness is needed, as this can be a barrier to living independently.