Tell us a bit about you and why you signed up to volunteer with Manchester Cares.
My name is Alice, I’m 32 years old and currently work for the NHS. I work with older adults with mental health difficulties and dementia. With the time pressured nature of the NHS I missed being able to just sit and listen to the amazing stories that the older adults in our community have to tell - and so I came to Manchester Cares!
It is all too easy in today’s society (with an increasing focus on individualism and loss of community) for older people to become marginalised and isolated. I have seen first-hand the negative effects that social isolation can have on a person’s physical and mental wellbeing and think what Manchester Cares do to address this issue is simply brilliant!
What have you enjoyed the most about the Social Clubs you’ve attended?
I have most enjoyed spending time with older neighbours and hearing about their lives. It gives me a great sense of wellbeing to be able to provide company and conversation to an older neighbour, and I love hearing their stories. I have enjoyed feeling part of something so positive and inclusive. It has also got me doing things I would never have done before including line dancing and playing the ukulele!
What did you enjoy about the New Year Get Together?
I enjoyed spending time with one particular older neighbour and hearing his story. We enjoyed chatting and drinking copious amounts of tea!
Did you discover any tips to staying healthy or learn anything new from the activities?
We talked about how activities and structure can help in leading a happy, healthy life and the importance of knowing when to ask for help. We talked about what we had got most from in life and it reinforced my belief that wellbeing that is often gained from giving as well as receiving.
What advice would you give to someone interested in signing up?
I would encourage anyone thinking about signing up to Manchester Cares to definitely give it a go! It is a lovely group of both older and younger neighbours to spend time with. It’s a flexible way of being able to give back something to the community whilst having fun yourself! Win-win!
Posted by Alex Khanyaghma on Tuesday 5th February 2019
Alex is the Development Coordinator at Manchester Cares.