We’re over halfway through our Winter Wellbeing project, and it’s been as busy as ever! Since October, we’ve been supporting our older neighbours to stay warm, active, healthy and connected. In fact, we’ve had the privilege of chatting to a whopping 690 older neighbours across Southwark and Lambeth! We’ve also carried out 317 interventions, by supporting our older neighbours in the following ways:
delivering Winter Grants, to go towards big winter bills or items to stay warm (e.g. a thick coat or duvet)
offering warm items such as woolly hats, gloves, thermal socks, scarves and snoods
signing people up to our free programme of monthly Social Clubs (including dances, technology workshop, brunch clubs, and visits to galleries and museums)
organising a weekly visit from a younger neighbour for friendship and company through our Love Your Neighbour programme
connecting people up to local organisations who can help with finances, benefits, housing issues, energy saving, and more
While we continue to connect with individuals from Bermondsey, Brixton and beyond, we wanted to introduce just some of the wonderful older neighbours we’ve met so far:
Kate was one of the very first neighbours we met this Winter Wellbeing project. We bumped into her at a local flu jab clinic in Stockwell, where she expressed some difficulties staying warm. A couple of weeks later, we visited Kate to take round some warm items and a Winter Grant, which she used to buy a thick, warm cardigan. She’s since braved the cold to come along to our Stockwell social clubs, and we can't wait to see her at many more! “I love to see new faces and new volunteers - whoever is there! We share and talk, and it is nice for me to get that opportunity.”
Jacqueline called us back in October, after receiving our leaflet from her nurse. She was concerned about staying warm at home, so as well as connecting her up with energy saving advice from SHINE, we delivered a Winter Grant and some warm items. Jacqueline was also interested in meeting up with others over a hot meal, so we let her know of all the brilliant local organisations offering hot meals, while simultaneously helping to bring the community together.
We got in touch with long-standing neighbour Adoracion through our re-engagement calls towards the end of last year. These calls give us the opportunity to catch up with older neighbours who we haven’t seen in a while. During our call Adoracion told us how she sometimes struggled to stay warm at home; so we visited her a couple of weeks later to bring round a few warm items. She’s since invited us along to chat about Winter Wellbeing at her Zumba class – helping us to reach more people.
We first met Nilu through our Winter Wellbeing project last year. She called us up again this year, a bit worried about staying warm - so we dropped off a few warm items, as well as a Winter Grant, to help towards her high fuel bills. During our visit, Nilu shared photos of all the wonderful things she’s been up to since we put her in touch with Age UK SAIL. She’s been along to countless Contact the Elderly tea parties (including at the Sky Garden!), and now has a regular visit from a GoodGym volunteer.
Jerilyn was referred to us by Age UK Lambeth back in October. Since sharing with us her love of art and creative writing, she’s come along to a handful of social clubs. She even got on so well with volunteer Rachel, that the pair asked to be matched through our Love Your Neighbour programme!
In Rachel’s recent blog about her time at SLC, you can see just how much Jerilyn means to her: “...I met Jerilyn who brightened up my day with her many stories about travelling across India, and I shared anecdotes about my own travelling experiences. We got on so well that we ended up becoming neighbours on the Love Your Neighbour programme and we now meet up for a coffee once a week.”
As always, a huge thank you to all those who help us to support our older neighbours through Winter Wellbeing. If you know anyone over 65 living in Southwark or Lambeth who may benefit from a little extra support over the winter, simply get in touch via our online referral form, email: [email protected] or phone: 07710777233.
Posted by Deepika Patel on Friday 18th January 2019
Deepika Patel is SLC's Outreach Officer. She previously volunteered at our social clubs while working as a pharmacist in Lambeth.