A Community Network for Bowes Park and Bounds Green
Since 2010 the Haringey Neighbourhoods Connect project has been supporting residents who are, or may become, vulnerable.
As part of the project, the Warm ‘n’ Healthy campaign aims to offer specific support during the winter months via the dedicated Warm ‘n’ Healthy team.
Advisors are in touch with residents, visiting their homes and ensuring they get all assistance they are entitled to: from help filling in forms to support with the digital TV switchover.
Each advisor is responsible for a part of the borough, and supported by volunteers specifically recruited for the campaign by Age UK Haringey.
As well as trying to prevent older people getting sick by helping them to keep warm the project is also directing them to other support. This includes everything from befriending and benefits advice, to slips, trips and falls assessments, and free leisure passes.
Neighbourhoods Connect and the Warm ‘n’ Healthy campaign point the way to how we might develop relationships between older residents and their neighbours in order to promote their independence in the community, and their relationship with each other. It's challenging at a time of unprecedented reductions in public sector funding when at the same time there is an unprecedented increase in the numbers of older people. One one method of sustaining good quality social care provision in our austere times is to draw on the support of neighbours, volunteers and community organisations.
Over the longer term Neigbourhoods Connect say they want to: "...make sure that people are given every opportunity to remain in their own homes, drawing on the support already available from the public and voluntary sectors, but also on informal support from local groups and neighbours."
As the manager of the Warm 'n' Healthy campaign, this is a belated hello to members of Bowes and Bounds Connected. We've had lots of success to date putting older people in touch with everything from support with the Digital Switchover and suppliers of home insulation, to befriending services and benefits advice. We'd love to hear from you. Are you aware of the campaign? Have you seen the advert on buses, in your local library or GP surgery? Perhaps you know somebody that could do with some support? Maybe you'd like to get involved yourself?