YMCA Teesdale has long played a vital role within its local community, and although the charity focuses on helping young people; given the demographics of Cockfield, the Teesdale branch also provides a number of activities for older generations too.
One of these activities includes a weekly Senior Club which is held every Wednesday in the Community Cafe. This club gives members the opportunity to get together and socialise over a hot meal provided by cafe staff.
One of the Community cafe’s regulars is a gentleman called Trevor. Trevor lives alone in a flat, and having that social interaction taken away from him left him feeling lonely and isolated, and Trevor wasn’t the only one.
The Teesdale team took it upon themselves to ring around all of their visitors, young and old, and check in to see how people were coping. This resulted in action, and with funding from TAP, County Durham Community Foundation and Ballinger, the team scoured the streets and made socially distanced visits to hundreds of homes in the Cockfield area, handing out hot meals and activity packs to keep people going throughout the pandemic.
“The service from the staff has always been fantastic, the young girls who deliver my meals do very well as they have a lot of meals to deliver. They are always polite and friendly and the meals are always gorgeous and I look forward to them every week! I also look forward to Kate ringing every week and catching up, it’s nice to have someone to talk to as sometimes I go a long time without speaking to anyone!”
With many people being told to avoid public transport, there was only one shop available for people to get supplies during the lockdown so this service was invaluable as it ensured people had access to regular meals and helped reduce isolation in such a rural area.
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