Devon County Council is the third largest authority in England providing services from schools to social care, highways to recycling and waste disposal. Overall, people in Devon enjoy good health, with higher life expectancy than the England and Wales average. However, certain groups of people are susceptible to poorer health. Those living in Devon’s pockets of deprivation experience higher rates of particular health problems, heart disease and poor mental health, for example.
Devon has a growing population which is creating its own challenges. The rising population and people living longer is intensifying demands for services and putting increasing pressure on our environment, particularly the availability of natural resources and this also results in increased pressure on health and social care services. Working together with partners, Devon County Council is tackling these issues and has invested in Centres of Excellence for people with dementia.
Devon has a predominately white population with an increasing, diverse Black and Minority Ethnic population with hundreds of different community languages spoken. Whilst being black or minority ethnic in Devon can have its challenges, there are many supportive networks and established community groups, find further information on the Grapevine website. The Exeter Respect festival is an annual celebration of our multi-cultural society.
In terms of religion, in the 2011 Census 61.5% of people said they were Christian, 28.5% said they had no religion and around 1.6% consisted other religions including Buddhists, Muslims, Hindus and Jews. There are a number of different places of worship in the main centres of population, in Exeter, Plymouth, Torquay and Barnstaple. Find out more information about faiths in Devon.
Significant challenges mean that not everyone can enjoy Devon’s high quality of life. There are big issues that public agencies, private companies, voluntary organisations and local communities must work together to address. We need to work effectively with our partners to make sure that the most vulnerable people in Devon get the help, care and protection they need and deserve.
To find out more about social care and the specific challenges faced in Devon, visit the Social Care and Health website.