Welcome to the Quality of Life Foundation.

Our aim is to raise people’s quality of life. We do this by making wellbeing central to the way we create and care for our homes and communities.

The UK needs more and better-quality homes. But there is too much short-term thinking. This is the case in the housing sector, local and national government.

This can result in developments that are of poor quality, badly designed or built in the wrong place. These are bad for both people and the planet. And they will result in public apathy and distrust in developers and councils.

The Quality of Life Foundation is working with thought leaders, decision makers and the public to change this. We want to create a national ‘coalition of the willing’ to find longterm, evidence-based solutions to these challenges.

Findings from our new, nationwide research highlight how fundamental a sense of community is to people's quality of life.

Research undertaken before and during lockdown reveals how feeling part of a community is key to how we experience our neighbourhoods.

The research also underlines the link between the built environment – our buildings, streets and shops – and quality of life.

The research, which surveyed people in various locations across the UK before and during lockdown, showed that people experience wellbeing through their local communities. Likewise, it is through their local communities that people develop a sense of belonging and an appreciation of the built environment in which they live.

The full results of the survey will be made public 1st September 2020. If you would like to be updated, sign up to our newsletter below.

What can local authorities do?

Deborah Cadman, the CEO of West Midlands Combined Authority and Quality of Life Foundation board member, gives her take on what combined and local authorities can do to help people post-Covid.

Our next online event

Get a ticket to our next event on how to improve people's sense of belonging to their homes and communities.

What makes a healthy home?

Ben Channon of Assael Architecture explains how we can raise our wellbeing by improving our homes.

The Quality of Life framework

Belonging

The Quality of Life Framework is a set of six themes that we need to consider when creating and caring for our homes and communities.

This month, we are launching national research into people’s perceptions of their own quality of life, which is informing the creation of this framework. As part of that launch, we will be holding a panel event based on the theme of Belonging.

People should feel ‘at home’ where they live – within both their homes and communities. That means creating places that encourage interactions with others and create a local identity through the provision of shops and services. Building in this way nurtures cultures that are intrinsic to a place and help people to build roots, traditions and identities.

Our framework

Nature

Having access to nature in our built environment is vital to our wellbeing, and over the past few months this has become increasingly evident. We have been able to take a step back, slow down and realise quite how important the natural environment is to our physical and mental health.

Wonder

A place that ignites creativity through fun, wonder, exploration and adventure through all means will greatly support and improve the mental and physical wellbeing of its community.

Homes

Healthy homes are healthy for people and healthy for the planet. They are constructed with care and attention to detail, and can accommodate different uses over time. Too often, the quality of homes is patchy, and initiatives such as permitted development highlight the need to regulate how new homes are created.

Movement

The ability to move freely (and flexibly, as modes of transport shift) is important to our normal, day-to-day lives as well as our more exciting and adventurous experiences. And, the benefits of active travel (i.e. walking and cycling) boost our physical and mental health.

Control

The feeling of agency and the ability to have a say over changes within a neighbourhood allows people to invest in their community for the long-term.

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