For many of the UK’s 2.2 million ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’ people who were advised to shield at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, leaving home for the first time in many months was a daunting thought.
“We’ve been gathering the views of older people in our borough on how to make community groups as welcoming as possible, and what difference this makes. Older people identified a range of factors including meeting and greeting, introductions, seating arrangements, opportunities for social interaction and relationship building, fostering a sense of community and various communication strategies.”
Ageing Better in Camden’s Lydia Shellien Walker tells us how a warm welcome is crucial to making community groups as friendly and inviting as possible.
“I am involved because you get to know about what other areas are doing, and it’s nice to meet people of our own age who are in the same boat. Some people are quite lonely, quite alone, and this is the only platform they have to get their voice heard. And that is the idea – that everyone has a say.”
Frances Eley, 91, talks about why the Older People’s Advisory Group in Camden is essential for older people in the borough to have their say on issues affecting them, to meet are share information, and to influence the Ageing Better work in the borough.