Older people are a priority in Winchester

Winchester City Council has been working to help older people who live in the district to access the services and information they need.

Older people’s wellbeing is a priority for the City Council and it is working together with local councillors and local charities to try and make a real difference to the lives of over 55s.

One local councillor who also takes a lead in helping older people in our communities is Cllr Robert Johnston. He was recently shortlisted for a national Councillor Achievement award in the category of Age UK Pride of Place Award, in recognition of his work in the community with older people.

Cllr Johnston said,

It was a real honour to be nominated for this award and to get through to the final five nationally. I think it recognises the priority Winchester City Council is giving to older people and access to services in the district. I believe that this is a role that local councillors are well placed to help with, through sign-posting to information or offering support when liaising with partner agencies such as the City and County Councils. We also have excellent local charities that are ready to assist people and we can act as a link into the excellent support available.”

Age UK were the sponsors of the award and the local group Age UK Winchester is working with the City Council in this area. Philip Voce, chairman of Age UK Winchester, said:

"Age UK Winchester is here to provide services for older people in and around the city. As an independent, local charity, we welcome the opportunity to work with Winchester City Council. We depend on our volunteers, grants, donations and fundraising to provide our services, and the City Council's grant has been invaluable in helping us with our services, including the popular daily lunch-clubs.

Our work is targeted at the specific needs of local older people. A good example is our new Friday lunch-club at the Winnall Community Centre, which supports the Council's objective of supporting the community in that part of the city. We are also about to launch a new Help at Home service in response to a growing need from those older people who need support to enable them to remain in their own homes. Last year, Age UK Winchester helped more than 300 of our senior residents and we are well on course to help even more in 2012."

Cynthia Boswell organises the lunch clubs and would love to hear from anyone who would like to join on 01962 871 725. The Winnall lunch-club meets on the second and fourth Friday of each month at the Community Centre in Garbett Road and a minibus is available for those who need transport. Coffee is available from 10:45, with lunch at 12:00. After lunch there is a free film for the members to enjoy.