Saathi Connect

September, 2020

We have received a Grant from the National Lottery Covid-19 for our Saathi Connect Project which aims to address and mitigate the resulting loneliness and social isolation and replicate groups where older people usually meet face to face

The Saathi Connect Project will benefit older people who usually attend 'Older People's Groups'. For many this weekly session was their only opportunity for socialisation and exercise. Enforced social distancing has deprived them of this contact. It will provide the opportunity for socialisation, learning and activity and will also facilitate engagement and connection to the wider community, reducing the impact of enforced social isolation

We will establish a virtual ‘Friendship Circle’, 'Saathi Connect' (meaning 'being with'/ partnership), using Zoom, to provide a variety of social, emotional, mental and physical activities to address the impact of enforced social isolation including:-

  • Chai ‘n Chat – opportunity to 'meet' with others for general chat with a cup of tea.
  •  Story Telling – reminiscence led by a Gujarati elder to draw on early memories to improve mood and wellbeing
  • Quiz – facts past and present relevant to the audience
  • Health & Wellbeing – opportunity to ask group questions or 1 to 1 with Health & Wellbeing Specialist
  • Chair based Exercise sessions - bespoke exercise programme designed to reduce the impact of several diseases, such as osteoporosis, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease
  • Musical Motivators - opportunity to choose music to sing along to
  • Mindfulness – guided meditation and mindfulness
  • Memory Lane Café – virtual meeting place for support to people living with dementia and/or their carers

We will facilitate the setting up of Zoom Dementia PALs sessions and will work with current leaders and volunteers within Organisations to identify people living with dementia and/or their carers who would benefit from this Project. We will also provide support to potential participants to improve their digital skills to enable them to take part in the sessions

We would very much welcome the opportunity to work with organisations to complement the services which they already provide to the members of their communities, in particular their older adults

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