Towards the end of 2020 we received the fantastic news that our bid for lottery funds to support our ‘Holding On’ project initiative had been successful.
Holding On continues and develops our ongoing commitment to supporting isolated older people, and we’re extremely excited to be able to offer a project which is specifically aimed at meeting the challenges raised by the pandemic.
What will the project look like?
Holding On is a weekly programme which links people together in their homes. We’ll be creating non-digital social networks, that allow people to share messages and resources, offering ongoing care and connection through weekly phone calls, doorstep visits and creative packs.
The project will also link the older participants to local children, through our partnerships with local schools, developing artistic collaborations between the generations. This will culminate in a “Festival of Hope” in July 2021, whereby artwork will be displayed across windows, lampposts and parks, for all the community to enjoy.
How did this project come about?
When the virus hit us all in the UK in March 2020, acta responded to the immediate needs of the isolated, older people we have supported over the years; providing food, friendly faces, contact and creative interaction on their doorsteps. Holding On will continue these connections through the next 6 months, and with the new Lockdown now in place, it’s even more essential that vulnerable people are supported to stay in their homes.
We have developed Holding On after talking to older people in South Bristol about how they had been affected by the Pandemic, particularly their feelings of isolation and fear. The project is aimed at meeting these needs, particularly now that a third Lockdown is in place, and while we wait of the vaccine to be rolled out.
Who will be involved?
We are already in contact with 30 people who are keen to be involved. We’re also linking up with partners across doctors’ surgeries and with Bristol Community Transport, in order to engage a further 50 people isolated at home. There will also be 20 more volunteers and around 60-100 school children. We hope that this project will allow us to expand our reach further into South Bristol, offering support where it is most needed.
A quote from one of our schools: “It is not just the participants themselves that are calling out for this service, but community partners who see the benefit on the wider community.”
Find out more?
If you have any questions about the project, or would like to find out more, please contact Sara Snook at email@example.com
You can read more about the work we do with isolated older people in our project “Making Time”.