Who We Are
BAB is a partnership of individuals and organisations working together to reduce isolation and loneliness among older people in Bristol.
We visited the Golden Agers to hear how the sessions had helped them.
Gloria is a woman in her eighties who volunteers for a variety of organisations across Bristol and is involved in her local church. She is also the chair of the Golden Agers, a role that she describes as being “the person who pushes the group.” When Gloria heard about the free wellbeing sessions Oasis Talk were offering, she discussed them with the group to see if they were interested and then got in touch with Oasis-Talk to book the sessions.
Gloria had recently lost her husband when the sessions began and was feeling more “anxious and thoughtful” than she usually would. Although Gloria had the support of her church, she found the sessions the most helpful in dealing with her anxiety because she felt she could discuss her emotions with the group. The sessions have helped Gloria to feel calmer and given her a space where she can talk.
Gloria found the sessions “interesting and useful” and said they were “good for them [the members] as well as being good for me.” From her position as chair of the Golden Agers, Gloria also observed that some of the members, who she felt needed the sessions the most, were the least likely to engage with them, but “that’s just people.” However, Gloria also invited some non-members who were able to benefit from the sessions – she even sent a few of the handouts all the way to support a friend in Birmingham!
Madge has been a member of the Golden Agers since 2002 and heard about the wellbeing sessions through Gloria. She also found the session covering anxiety the most useful and felt that the sessions were well delivered and easy to understand. “I learnt that you shouldn’t bother too much about the things that are out of your control... I think it’s good to talk, to hear other viewpoints especially if other people are struggling like you are. I think these classes are good for older people. We need to learn these skills so we don’t get over-bothered, we need to be relaxed and accept that we don’t have to do all of the things all of the time.”
Oasis-Talk’s wellbeing sessions will run until January 2020. Details of all the groups and sessions covered are available here: http://bristolageingbetter.org.uk/wellbeing-bme-older-peo/
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