Ideas and inspiration at the Failsworth West launch event
The launch took place on 15th March 2016 at Anchor, Earls Lodge Sheltered Housing Complex, Failsworth.
An advertising flyer about the event called “What Is Good About Your Area and How Could It Become More Age-Friendly” had generated a lot of interest. So many of the public responded, that the project administration team initiated a second launch meeting to be scheduled.
There were 39 attendees - 27 members of the general public, two from the Administration Team, Nicola Shore from Age UK Oldham and Nayan Joshi from Action Together - they were supported by community volunteers and researchers.
We were encouraged to split into five groups each with a community volunteer.
Nayan opened the launch, explaining what this Big Lottery Funded Project aimed to achieve, ie: "to create places that are age-friendly, empowering people to live fulfilling lives as we age” and how small projects could be funded locally.
We discussed what was - good/bad/what could improve our area. There were many positive comments from each group and visual recorded minutes were prepared. We then discussed the many suggestions brought forward.
The conclusion was in general that Failsworth West is a good place to live for older people.
However, although there is have good access to public transport during the daytime if you are a fit elderly resident - if you are not then transport and getting about for less mobile is very difficult, especially in the evening. This is a very big cause of isolation in our community.
We felt secure in our homes the majority of the time and have good policing from our local PCSO’s.
Local shopping was good.
Social activities were held in Failsworth, however, the general public were not always aware what was happening due to lack of information. It was therefore decided that perhaps a “Whats On” Community Notice Board could be erected.
There are local Community Gardening Allotments, but toilet facilities are not available. Providing this facility could be a worthwhile age-friendly project to consider.
Social Media, another topic discussed; keeping in touch with family and friends could be an “isolation breaker”. Providing WiFi instruction on how to use this technology efficiently would be a good project.
A Community Film Night was talked about and will be considered.
Everyone felt it was a good informative meeting, now we have to get together and see what can be achieved.
Nicola and Nayan asked if anyone from the meeting would like to be involved as a volunteer/ambassador for the project in our community.
Our meeting ended with a wholesome buffet lunch.
There was lso an excellent response at the second launch on 26th April. The same format was followed. Similar topics discussed. All agreed it had been a very worthwhile experience and looked forward to which projects would be carried forward.