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AXMINSTER: Visiting group to focus on fighting loneliness
Thursday, 27 March 2014
Axe Valley Visiting Scheme’s (AVVS) Axminster wing is intent on fighting loneliness.
The AVVS campaign aims to provide social interaction for people in the area aged 60 plus and runs alongside the nationwide Campaign to End Loneliness (www.campaigntoendloneliness.org).
AVVS co-ordinator Gill Amos said: “Loneliness has a major impact on health and wellbeing.
“Campaign to End Loneliness points out that lacking social connections is a risk factor for early death comparable to smoking 15 cigarettes a day.
“Loneliness is worse for us than physical inactivity and obesity.
“Axe Valley Visiting Scheme matches volunteers with people aged 60plus in need of social interaction.
“Volunteers visit people in their own homes and can take them out if they are able to do so, for example on a drive to the beach or to a café.
“They provide clients with the basic social contact which most of us take for granted: a chat, someone to listen, a smile.”
Axe Valley Visiting Scheme used to cover Axminster and Seaton as one area, but has split into separate groups.
The Axminster and district group is co-ordinated by Gill and funded by Axminster Hospital League of Friends.
Gill said that she and her colleagues would like to wish the Seaton and district group, which is affiliated with Seaton Hospital League of Friends, “much success, satisfaction and happiness in their activities”
The Axminster group also has a hospital sitting service lined up and already provides reminiscence work at Oak House Care Home in Axminster and The Koppers Residential Home in Kilmington, using a reminiscence box containing objects related to the past to trigger memories.
Gill said: “Reminiscence work can help people keep their faculties for longer and feel better about their current situation, as they are in control of remembering their past and it’s something they can do for themselves.
“It is particularly beneficial for people with dementia, as early memories are often stronger but some don’t have much opportunity to share them.”
Anyone wishing to use any of the services provided, volunteer for the group or make a donation can call Gill on 01404 549045.
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