Key components to DESIGN a successful GUM programme

As demonstrated through the GUM theory of change, paying attention to programme content, organisational aspects and motivational aspects improves the chances for a successful GUM programme!

This means that designing a successful GUM programme requires:

  • close attention to programme content,
  • ensuring co-creation by participants,
  • effective planning and organisation of each session.

These are the elements we will now explore together!

Identify appropriate settings

The second key component of designing a successful GUM programme is to identify the appropriate settings where it will take place. It is known that close-by locations, which are easy to access, stimulate participation in GUM programmes.

This is a list of suggested questions you might want to go through to help you in this step:

  • Is the location easy to get to?
    • Is it within a 15-minute reach (either on foot/bike, by car or by public transport)?
    • How expensive would it be to travel to the location?
    • Can you travel there safely?
  • Is the setting appropriate for the activities you have decided to do?
    • Have you made sure any movement space is free of obstacles?
    • Are there chairs or other pieces of furniture which older people can use for balance?
    • Is the space well-lit and well-ventilated?

Engage your target audience

Engaging your target audience will be key to the success of your activity, so you need to think of it in advance, both in terms of communication (to enrol them) and in terms of participation (to keep them active during the programme).

When it comes to engaging an audience for a GUM programme of activities, the best advice we can give is as follows: “Just as we should never stereotype based on race, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation, we shouldn’t stereotype age and generation”.

This is a great reminder of one of the GUM principles which is to always take a personal approach and talk to the young and elderly individually AND GroupWise to ensure all are on an enjoyable learning path.

The following quotes are also here to help us take a new perspective on ageing.

Should you want to go further, we suggest you have a look at the following resources:

  1. How to Engage a Multigenerational Audience, an article by Chris Ballman,
  2. Connecting a multigenerational audience, Blog Post
  3. How can you engage youth and seniors in intergenerational learning? LinkedIn collaborative post

Co-design your programme of activity

Experience has shown that co-design is one of the key components of any innovative social action programme.

In the following video, Dusan Pjevac, Sport and Health Development Officer at Azur Sport Santé is presenting the DOs and DON’Ts of co-design principles.

Should you want to go further and learn more about the co-design approach, we suggest you have a look at the following resources:

  1. Co-create project – All Training Resources
  2. Co-create project – A curriculum for the realisation of educational activities in collaborative design at professional scenarios
  3. Canva template for considering the 5 principles of co-design by PaperGiant
  4. Learning for active ageing and intergenerational learning: final report 2012 by publications office of the European Union

Ensure safeguarding

Last but not least, in your journey to design a successful GUM programme of activities it is key for you to include the safeguarding component. Indeed, before thinking of the fun element and the benefits the participants will gain from taking part, you must ensure their safety and well-being.

Below is our proposed checklist of items to keep in mind.

  • Are you familiar with the 6 principles of safeguarding?
  • Does your organisation have a specific safeguarding policy?
  • Do the settings where your activities are taking place have a specific safeguarding policy?
  • Do all participants know how to report a safeguarding issue and to whom?
  • Has a risk assessment of the location taken place before beginning activities?

Should you want to go further, we suggest you have a look at the following resources:

  1. Six Principles of Adult Safeguarding, Ann Craft Trust
  2. The ‘Four Rs’ of Safeguarding Adults, UK coaching
  3. Safeguarding children and child protection:
  4. C Stand For Children -UNICEF: What We Do - Safeguarding Children

Let’s test where you are before moving to the next stop

"Project is funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Education and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA). Neither the European Union nor EACEA can be held responsible for them."