On Thursday 30th January we had a Local Links get - together in the Villlage Hall which was well attended. The Parish Council paid for the use of the Hall, and the Community Shop provided the refreshments. Relevant leaflets provided by local support agencies were distributed and we demonstrated the use of the In Case of Emergency (ICE) facility available on mobile phones. The leaflets will also be displayed in the shop.
We all chatted informally about the kind of help people felt they could offer as their contribution to Share a Care, although we stressed that offering help is NOT a prerequisite of receiving it! However it was felt that people often feel better if they can do something in return.
Everyone seemed to enjoy the opportunity to chat over biscuits and a cuppa.
- Informal conversation came up with a wide variety of ways to help each other, including:
- Local lifts to appointments, eg hospital, doctors.
- Visiting each other just to chat.
- Dog walking.
- Cat feeding.
- Helping anyone hard of hearing with important telephone calls.
- Help with filling in forms and paperwork.
- Checking on property when people are away.
- Changing Library books.
- Collecting prescriptions.
- Small household jobs such as changing a light bulb.
- Small gardening jobs.
- Darning and mending.
- Helping with occasional heavy jobs such as turning a mattress.
- Also one very good idea is to check out any difficulties people are having with equipment-TVs, microwaves, computers etc- so that expensive engineers are not called out unnecessarily if the fault can be fixed easily and safely.
It was stressed that anyone offering lifts should not accept any payment of any kind as this could invalidate their insurance in case of an accident. Some people said they would check with their insurance companies first before offering lifts.
Everyone agreed that none of the above support should be carried out by the same person on a regular basis, unless arranged between the parties concerned.
By the end of this month we are hoping to have finalised arrangements so that any of these services can be co-ordinated through the Community Shop. Many kind people in the village already provide support for others and it is important not to interfere with this, but it would be reassuring to know that a phone call to the shop will result in peace of mind for any of us with a worry or problem. We already have a list of people who will answer a call from the shop, consult a list of helpers and link the person who needs the support to an appropriate volunteer.
There will be a number of people living in the Parish who are unaware of the support available. If you know of anyone or can think of anyone who would appreciate some contact and information please let us know via the shop or at the meetings.
It was felt that the afternoons of the last Thursdays in each month would be a good time to get together to discuss developments, share ideas, iron out difficulties and just generally chat and enjoy each others' company.
Thank you to the Parish Council for agreeing to fund the use of the Village Hall on a monthly basis and to the Community Shop Committee for agreeing to continue to provide refreshments and for allowing the shop to be the contact point for anyone in Eardisland who needs help.
Finally, we report on what has happened at the get togethers for inclusion in the Parish Magazine and on the Website to keep everyone informed. It should be stressed that there is no formality involved; these are not formal meetings and are not officially minuted. The whole initiative is meant to be as flexible and relaxed as possible, anyone can join us, but no one is obliged to attend.
Time: Afternoons of the last Thursday in each month
Venue: Eardisland Village Hall