Age Concern Liverpool & Sefton runs a Befriending & Reablement Scheme for older people in Sefton who are isolated or lonely. For older people who are less mobile or perhaps suffer from agoraphobia we provide a volunteer befriender to visit the person in their own home. For older people who are able to get out but feel lonely or isolated, we have companion groups. These are small, friendly, local groups of older people who like to get together to have a cuppa, chat and make friends.
Currently we have 3 companion groups meeting in different parts of the borough which you are welcome to just turn up at – no need to book.
In Bootle, we meet fortnightly at 2:30pm on a Thursday at the Apple Tree Café in the May Logan Centre, 294 Knowsley Road L24 5DQ. The next meeting is the 22 August.
In Maghull we meet fortnightly at 10:30 am on a Tuesday at The Maghull Methodist Church, 180 Liverpool Road, L31 2HP. The next meeting is the 20 August.
In Southport we meet fortnightly at 1pm on a Thursday at the Theatre Bar, The Atkinson, Lord Street, PR8 1DB. The next meeting is the 15 August.
The Companions groups also undertake occasional outings and last summer they went on a cruise on the Leeds\Liverpool canal. The outing was so popular that it was oversubscribed and we had to set up a waiting list. The weather in the morning was very unpromising with grey skies and rain; but our luck was in. By the time the group reached the barge the sun was shining and it had become a glorious day.
As the Companions leisurely cruised up the canal, taking in the sights of wild life and waterlilies; they were served with lovely fresh sandwiches, cakes and scones with jam and clotted cream accompanied by tea, coffee and sparkling wine.
At the half way point, about 45 minutes out, the barge stopped and the Captain regaled the Companions with stories about the nature and history of the canal. Everyone was enthralled by what he had to say. After he had finished his tales, he asked the group if anyone would like to steer the barge back to the mooring. Some of the Companions had visions of the Titanic and declined the offer, but one redoubtable lady remembered that the Captain had told the group that the canal was only 4ft deep in the centre, and so she took the helm.
The group safely arrived back at the mooring, where all of the Companions disembarked and got onto the waiting coach to take them home. The day had been a great success, giving the opportunity for everyone to enjoy something a bit different from the normal routine and to share conversations and laughter with friends old and new.
If you feel that joining a Companions group would be good for you, then just pop along to one of the meeting venues or give us a ring on 01704 542 993 if you have any queries.