Move Mates input welcomed at Age Friendly York consultation

Volunteers at the monthly meeting holding a Move the Masses banner.

Here at Move the Masses we have monthly meet-ups for our volunteer Move Mates to discuss how everyone is getting on, and to ensure we are doing the best we can for both our beneficiaries and our volunteers.

There is always great camaraderie between everyone and interesting stories to tell and insights to share. This month we welcomed three new Move Mates to the crew.

We have more people wanting to walk than volunteers at the moment, so should you fancy getting involved - get in touch!

We usually have a guest speaker for part of the time who has some sort of affinity with the people we walk with and can share some knowledge with us.

At last night’s meeting we were joined by Toria from City of York Council. She told us about two schemes the council are running that might benefit from our volunteer’s input.

Firstly she told us about how York was becoming an ‘Age Friendly City’ and that over the next 2 years there was going to be a big consultation to ensure York is as age-friendly as possible. Toria asked us whether we would talk to our beneficiaries about their experience of journeys in York (the first phase of the consultation) and what barriers they came up against.

It was explained that it is sometimes hard for the council to reach the people they most need to consult, and of course Move Mates are on the front line to chat to their target audience on a regular basis. We discussed our beneficiaries needing benches at regular intervals to enable them to feel able to find somewhere to sit down whilst walking, and how irregular paving was very difficult for them.

Toria also told us about the ‘Homeshare’ scheme in York whereby the council are matching up lonely, older homeowners with young people who pay a very reduced rent to share their home with them, offering help around the house and companionship as part of the deal.

It’s a great idea aiming to alleviate loneliness and social isolation in older people, enable them to stay longer in their own home and provide young people with an opportunity to live more affordably.

Our next Move Mates meet-up is on Wednesday 16th October where we are joined by the community physiotherapy team to talk us through walking aids and exercises our beneficiaries would benefit from.