People over 65 in Nottingham are set to benefit from a new community programme that aims to help combat issues caused by or made worse by COVID-19.
The new initiative from national charity Independent Age matches older people with volunteers so they can work together to identify and achieve goals that can improve their lives. Focusing on three key areas, the project aims to:
- reduce isolation and loneliness
- address issues raised by poverty
- improve physical health and mental wellbeing
Independent Age volunteers will focus on the individual needs of the person they have been matched with to help improve their wellbeing. Notable achievements in similar projects include helping a women overcome her anxiety to resume going back to concerts, and supporting a bereaved man to go fishing again as he previously struggled on his own.
Barclays is supporting the Community Pilot Project in Nottingham with a £100,000 donation through its100x100 Programme, as part of its wider £100m COVID-19 Community Aid Package.
Service user Lalita, 73, from West Nottingham explains how the project improved her life:
“My match Rosemary is really helping me. We go for walks together which helps my back pain. At home I am ok but I just sit and do nothing, it is so nice to walk with someone, even just once a week. We talk about our families, and I feel more comfortable walking with my volunteer match.”
People over 65 in Nottingham can get involved via Independent Age’s free helpline at 0800 319 6789, or by visiting the charity’s community services page. People can also be referred by a social prescriber or GP.
The charity is also looking to recruit more volunteers to help them deliver the pilot project. To learn more about Independent Age volunteering opportunities in Nottingham and across the UK, visit their volunteering page
Simon Hewett-Avison, Director of Services at Independent Age, said:
“We are extremely grateful to Barclays for supporting our new project in Nottingham. Covid has touched so many lives, and older people have been severely impacted by the pandemic. This money will enable those struggling, to work with a volunteer to achieve life improving goals.
“Community projects like the one we have launched in Nottingham provide a lifeline to so many people, and ensure those in later life can live with dignity, choice and purpose.
“It is a great opportunity and incredibly rewarding for the people who volunteer, so please do get in touch if you would like to be part of this exciting initiative.”
The pilot will run for 12 months from January 2022. Volunteers are asked to sign up to work with an older person for 6 – 9 months.
Commenting on the announcement, Nigel Higgins, Barclays Chairman, said:
“Our 100x100 charity partners have been working tirelessly to support vulnerable communities across the UK through what has been a difficult year. These charities have championed a range of causes, including tackling homelessness, food poverty or loneliness, and we are immensely grateful for their work in the communities in which we live and work.
“It is evident that the effects of the pandemic will continue to be felt by many for some time to come. Our decision to extend our 100x100 Programme for a second time reflects this, allowing Barclays to support 250 UK grassroots charities in their crucial work in our local communities.”
To find out more about volunteering opportunities with Independent Age, see Volunteer in your local community | Independent Age
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About Barclays 100x100 Programme
Barclays is committed to helping its customers, clients, colleagues, and the wider community deal with the unprecedented social and economic crisis caused by COVID-19.
Through the programme, Barclays is supporting 250 UK grassroots charities with donations of £100,000 to deliver impactful on-the-ground support to local communities affected by the pandemic