by Steve Beasant on 5 September, 2011
OLDER people won’t be feeling the bite of cold weather as much this winter, thanks to a new campaign.
A scheme to help elderly and isolated people in North East Lincolnshire prepare for the winter will begin on October 7.
The first stage of the Winter Campaign will see the distribution of a checklist to ensure residents are stocked up on essential items, such as coffee, tea, sugar, milk (can be frozen), bread (can be frozen), butter / margarine, tins of soup, veg and fruit, frozen meals, toilet rolls, pet food, torch and batteries, bottled water and light bulbs.
The second part will be the launch of a ‘buddy’ scheme, ensuring neighbours and friends check the vulnerable during severe weather.
It has been organised by Voluntary Action North East Lincolnshire, which says there are more than 10,000 people over the age of 60 living in North East Lincolnshire.
Organisations, such as the West Marsh Over-50s Club, will also become involved, as well as Age UK and the council and the scheme has raised £715 from their support.
Martin Wakefield, project manager for older people’s health and well-being at Care Plus, said: “Older people need to be better prepared this winter because last year we saw very severe weather conditions, with the elderly suffering.
“They are important in our community and we need to provide a better service for them.
“We have created a prompt checklist with boxes to tick off for quick reminders to buy extra items.
“Many food parcels had to go out last year and we want to save on this by getting the elderly to prepare themselves. We will engage with community groups and care homes to explain the scheme rather than ineffectively posting it through a letterbox.
“We are also looking at putting in place a weather warning system to make the elderly aware of when the snow is about to hit.”
As reported, last winter saw North East Lincolnshire ground to halt by some of the worst snowfall in years.
While most people coped, the older population were naturally vulnerable, and food parcels were delivered to many households. This year, the plan is for everyone to be prepared.
Penny Burton, programme manager for Healthier Communities and the Local Involvement Network, added: “We don’t want to be in the same boat as last year and we want to get the message across and to be more prepared.
“North East Lincolnshire has a large elderly population because many retire here and we need to make sure they are cared for during the bad weather.”
To get the project off the ground, the organisers are appealing for donations to fund posters and cards to distribute to older people throughout the area. If you can help – and if you want to get involved in the project – call Penny on 01472 315437.Leave a comment