Tonic is a community-led not for profit organisation. We are focused on creating vibrant and inclusive urban LGBT+ affirming retirement communities where people can share common experiences, find mutual support and enjoy their later life. Tonic was established in 2014 to address the issues of loneliness and isolation of older LGBT+ people and the need for specific housing and support provision as there is currently none in the UK.
Our opportunity and challenge is to offer something new in the UK, as LGBT+ retirement communities can currently only be found in other countries. We will provide accommodation and safe social spaces where older LGBT+ people are supported, gain life affirming social connections and access culturally appropriate services.
We are driven by the demand of older LGBT+ people for better choices in housing, support and care recognising that ‘a one size fits all approach’ does not meet the needs of diverse communities, we co-produce to create truly community led projects. Read more about our Community Panel, who help influence our direction, here.
Rather than just being “LGBT+ friendly” our services will be actively affirming of the lives, histories, needs and desires of LGBT+ people. This does not imply exclusion of those who do not identify as LGBT+ but actively values those who respect and celebrate LGBT+ people.
Tonic has focused on London for the first project as the capital has the largest older LGBT+ population in the UK, estimated to be 145,000 people. We are also working in other areas, such as Manchester with the LGBT Foundation.