The volunteers at Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin are the life blood of the local charity, providing much needed support to older people right across the county. The local charity’s Chief Executive said it’s with thanks to their volunteers they have managed to continue to support vulnerable older people during the lockdown.
Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin’s 37 day centres that are temporarily closed are usually a hive of activity for older people. The local charity has adapted its services with volunteers telephoning 500 members, sometimes several times a week in the case of the most socially isolated, to provide a friendly voice and alleviate any feelings of loneliness.
Volunteers in the charity’s dementia support team are also in regular contact with the carers that usually attend their groups, checking on their wellbeing and offering them much needed support. Befriending volunteers and telephone buddies are continuing to combat loneliness during this difficult time by calling over 350 older people every week. The Information and Advice team are also offering consultations over the telephone, ensuring benefits checks can still take place during lockdown.
Joan Bird, Day Centre Organiser in Newport went the extra mile using the funds normally spent on day centre activities to purchase and deliver fruit and salad boxes from Green Fields of Donnington to all her members. Joan wanted to check in on the older people she would usually see every week at her day centre and provide fresh food at a time when they needed it.
Heather Osborne, Chief Executive of Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin, said: “We want to thank all of our volunteers, like Joan, who take the time to support older people throughout the year, whether it’s making a phone call or picking up shopping, it makes a huge difference to the lives of older people across the county. It’s been amazing to see everyone come together during these recent months to help older people in our communities. Thank you to all the many volunteers, we simply couldn’t offer the whole range of support services without you.’
To keep up to date with support provided by Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin during lockdown you can visit their website on www.ageukstw.org.uk. Alternatively you can call the charity on 01743 233 123, leave a message with your name and telephone number.