Supper club is a success

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NEW initiatives set up in Queensferry in recent months to support older people in the area are proving a major success.

In February this year, the Queensferry Gazette reported that local charity Queensferry Care had received grants in excess of £32,000 to set up two new projects.

The Scottish Government’s Change Fund Inno-vation Programme cash boost initiated both an Almond supper club and a volunteer community hub.

The supper club, an evening service provided at The Haven on Burgess Road allows for carers and the person they care for to have time outwith the home.

This facility allows those who are being cared for an opportunity to meet old friends while their carers can meet up with other carers, whilst volunteers help out.

A Queensferry Care spokesman said: “Margaret and Ivy (not real names) have started coming to the supper club.

‘‘The two of them used to meet shopping or at church, then, when going out became too much, Ivy stayed at home and became isolated.

‘‘Showing early signs of dementia, her home help had 15 minutes to rush about the flat getting food ready, a quick tidy, wash-up and off. Then the long, solitary day would close in again.”

He continued: “The supper club has changed Ivy’s life as not only can she and Margaret catch up on gossip but their carers come along as well to talk to other carers while staff and volunteers take on the load of serving supper and making sure everyone is enjoying themselves.”

David Pomfret, chairman of Queensferry Care, said the second initiative is still in the process of being set up and will cater for all voluntary organisations in the Queensferry, Ratho, Ratho Station, Newbridge, Kirkliston and Dalmeny areas.

David said: This service will allow volunteers from other organisations and groups in the area to network, share information and resources, such as training and good practice.

‘‘It will facilitate closer partnership working and enable those delivering services and activities in the community to identify the needs of local older people and find ways to address them.

One of the main outcomes will be to provide a database of activities and support available for older people, allowing them to continue to pursue activities or interests with whatever help is available to allow them to do so.

The charity operates from two sites, at the Haven and Kirkliston Community Centre, and provides 60 day care places per week to older people with a variety of physical and mental health issues, as well as a befriending service.

There is also a dedicated carer support and development worker providing much needed backing and advice to carers in Haven’s areas.

For further information on any of Queensferry Care’s services or its fundraising programme contact The Haven on 0131 331 5570.