August 2011 Newsletter
Newsletter 18 August 2011
At the last meeting in June we welcomed new members and hope they were not put off by the amount of paper they took home! The meetings are the best way to get information to you. Everyone had a questionnaire from the Patients’ Association which even had a stamp on the envelope! I hope at least some people returned the forms and didn’t steam off the stamp!
We had a very enlightening talk from Lindsey Haydock Clemo the Equalities Advisor from Disability Cornwall and Cornwall “Racial Equality Council”. There was some very thought provoking information and maybe we came to the realisation that there were too many causes for discrimination and inequalities in people’s lives. In Cornwall alone there are in the region of 106,000 people with disabilities of one kind or another, let alone all the other causes of discrimination and prejudice.
Guy Patterson from Age UK had to talk for two as the speaker who was to join him had a last-minute family commitment which left Guy doing some improvisation – which he did extremely well! He introduced the new South-West Seniors’ Network magazine, the Clarion, which will have a circulation throughout the south-west (now 60 forums and around a 50,000 membership). We will be hearing more about this shortly. He talked about the SWSN and the involvement with Age UK happily interspersed with anecdotes.
I have been amused that the article about “A mini grumble!” elicited more comment than any other article we have published. What’s more one person dared to disagree with me – unheard of! (see under letters)
Carrick Champion for the Elderly and Vulnerable
A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO PREVENTING FALLS
Falls are not an inevitable part of getting older – many can be prevented. There are things that you can do to reduce the risk, by staying healthy and keeping safe in your own home. Even if you do fall, it will help to know what to do. Here are some top tips; I hope you find them useful.
Take regular exercise, even a short walk or light gardening, to keep muscles strong and joints supple. If you haven’t done any exercise for a while, or if you have an existing health condition, talk to your GP before starting anything new. For details of local exercise classes and groups, visit getactivecornwall.co.uk
Have an annual eye check and make sure your glasses are cleaned regularly: eye tests are free if you are aged 60 or over
If you take 4 or more medications, ask your GP or pharmacist to review them and ask about possible side effects.
Eat more dairy produce, tinned boned fish, green leafy vegetables, pulses and nuts, and try to get a little sunshine (weather permitting!) to increase your daily intake of calcium and vitamin D
Eat regular meals to keep up your strength and energy
Drink plenty of water
Keep warm in cold weather
Above all, if you do have a fall -even if you don’t hurt yourself - tell your GP.
Safety at home
Make sure your shoes and slippers fit well and your toenails are cut regularly
Never leave things on the stairs and keep walkways free of clutter
Make sure your home has good lighting, particularly on stairs and steps
Remove trip hazards such as loose rugs, frayed carpets, trailing wires
To avoid dizziness, get out of bed or up from a chair in slow stages and wait a moment before moving away
Fit hand/grab rails where needed e.g. stairs, steps, in the bathroom. Age Concern or your local Handyperson scheme may be able to give practical help with this
Keep items that you use frequently within easy reach to avoid bending and reaching
Don’t rush! take your time moving to answer the telephone or the door
Turn on a light or a torch when getting out of bed at night
Use a non-slip mat in the bath.
If you do fall
CALL FOR HELP: use your Lifeline alarm, crawl to a telephone, or make a loud noise to attract attention
KEEP WARM: cover up with anything in reach, like a rug, blanket, or towel
KEEP MOVING: move the parts of your body that don’t hurt, to relieve pressure. If you are on a hard floor, try to move to an area with carpet or a rug
TRY TO GET UP: if you can, roll
onto your hands and knees, crawl to a solid piece of furniture and use it to help you up.
Lifeline alarm – a 24-hour year- round service that helps gives you the freedom to live your life independently and the security of knowing you can always get help if you need it. There are a number of sensors to suit your needs, including falls sensors that can summon help should a fall be detected, even if the person is unconscious. Contact Cornwall Lifeline on 01872 224521
Emergency Carer Card – a peace of mind service provided free by Adult
Care and Support. If a carer is suddenly unable to provide care, one phone call will set in motion an emergency plan to support the person requiring care. 01872 324333 or email: email@example.com
Handyperson – for home safety checks, repairs and minor adaptations. Offered by Carrick Housing 0800 678 1676, Hanover Housing (01579 340073 / 815731) and Anchor Housing (0845 140 2020)
Age UK – for useful advice and information on falls prevention. 01872 266388 or www.ageuk.org.uk
Falls Specialist Team – 01209 881761.
ON A LIGHTER NOTE...
If you are a senior you will understand this one, if you deal with seniors, this should help you understand them a little better, and if you are not a senior yet....God willing, someday you will be.
The £2.99 Special
We went to breakfast at a restaurant where the 'seniors' special' was two eggs, bacon, hash browns and toast for £2.99.
'Sounds good,' my wife said. 'But I don't want the eggs...'
'Then, I'll have to charge you £3.49 because you're ordering a la carte,' the waitress warned her.
'You mean I'd have to pay for not
taking the eggs?' my wife asked incredulously.
'YES!' stated the waitress. 'I'll take the special then,' my wife said.
'How do you want your eggs?' the waitress asked.
'Raw and in the shell,' my wife replied. She took the two eggs home and baked a cake.
DON'T MESS WITH SENIORS!!! We've been around the block more than once!
RESIDENTIAL PARK HOMES
Are you feeling warm? No!
Following an enquiry about insulation from the owners of a park home, we sallied forth to see what could be done to help. We found a couple who simply could not get warm.
They had tried talking to everyone including their MP – no good. They did not fit the parameters of which there seem to be many. To cut to the end of the story for them, they are now on a waiting list for help.
constructions on concrete bases, no loft space and no cavity walls. The latter is true of something like 3000 park homes in Cornwall alone.
Three years ago the Borough of Restormel ran a pilot project for individual home owners for about 58 or 59 homes for external cladding and to test if that made a difference. It is assumed it did.
About a year ago Scottish and Southern Energy got in touch with Cornwall Council saying they would like to do an energy efficiency project with the saying “The Council on park Government values the role the park home sector plays in the housing market by offering an affordable alternative to mainstream housing for many people, often over the age of 50, in mainly rural, semi- rural and seaside locations.”
Having perused the websites of which there seemed to be many, there appears to be much new legislation regarding licensing but I have been unable to discover anything about supporting the desperately needed upgrading of thermal efficiency.
While it is true to say that new, modern mobile homes now have the appearance of traditionally built bungalows with pitched roof, central heating, double glazing and all mod cons., it is a far cry from the older
homes so a testing project was pioneered throughout Cornwall – sounds good but the number of homes was ludicrous – (under 80), the parameters tricky, only sites with more than 10 and fewer than 40 were eligible and individuals invited to apply. Two insulation providers with different systems were employed for the trial. This project concluded a few weeks ago and the results are still being analysed by OFGEN. It seems the utility companies must use up their profits in a suitable way and it is hoped that more will come of this.
However, to my dismay I find that Cornwall Council has only allocated £300,000 towards a scheme which is not yet developed or approved for park home improvements. I understand that a decision will be forthcoming shortly but will this discretionary money still be available? In any event it does not take much of an arithmetician to work out that there is funding for no more than 50 - 60 homes. What happens to the other thousand or two and how do they decide who gets the money?
NB We do have Members who live on Park Home sites.
We are on two websites a “slot” on Thursdays from 11.00 till 1. Cornwall Council - but it takes time! 1.00 when people can come in to talk a) http://www.cornwall.gov.uk to us if they so wish. b) On the right-hand listing click on
Adult Care and Support
Getting in Touch c) Left-hand list click on
Carrick Over 50’s Forum 2. Cornwall Business Directory a) http://intoCornwall.com b) click on Business c) click on Clubs and Associations
The good news is that Tony Watts, Journalist and Editor is coming to the next meeting to discuss setting up our own website amongst other things. An approach to a local school has had a positive result so by September we should be working on a website in conjunction with some young people.
Truro Well Being Centre
The Tourist Information Centre in Truro has moved next door leaving the space in the Town Hall for us! It is due to open on 25 July and will be open daily from 9.00 till 5.00. Who is “us”? As I look at the list of groups, there are too many to list but absolutely anyone involved in health and wellbeing for all ages, will have a presence there.
This is still early days but we will have
More on this as information becomes available
Age and Ambition Celebration
Following the success of last year’s Age and Ambition event which attracted in the region of 1200 people!, it was decided to try something different this year. Still in the planning stages, our local event will be in the Dracaena Centre in Falmouth timed for the same day as the usual Forum meeting on Thursday 6 October. Details of what is on offer will emerge shortly. The theme this year is “Getting and Staying Active”.
Great News for Us
We have at last got an offer of a minutes secretary! Mrs Sherrie Prout is going to give us a try for which I am truly thankful.
PLEASE NOTE WELL
Future mailings of the newsletter will ONLY GO TO PAID UP MEMBERS. If you are not a Member and still wish to receive the newsletter, please let us know. Costs are soaring for everyone, including us. It is in full on the Council website and shortly we will have our own website so those with electronic means will be able to view it that way.
Subject: Forms of address
Dear Mrs Whiteley* Hi Judith*
It was with much interest that I read your “mini grumble” in the May Over- 50’s Forum Newsletter.
To my mind, addressing someone by title and surname smacks of a dusty neo-Victorianism that we should gladly shake off. It is a barrier to empathy and understanding, and places an uncomfortable distance between the parties.
I don’t think that respect and familiarity of address, are mutually exclusive.
Yours sincerely Mr IDR* (of Truro)
*delete as appropriate
One or two felt the same but did not express themselves so eloquently!
Fortunately I found a champion in Mrs ES of Carnon Downs who said
“I too strongly object to the growing habit, and heartily agree with all the points listed”.
Mrs S then championed the cause of apostrophes – a good cause as so many people haven’t a clue - but admits it is nothing to do with the Over -50’s (ah I have been taken to task on that one too - is it Over-50s’ or Over- 50’s or over-50s or - I could go on about the hyphen? I never did quite get to the bottom of it all before the Member who raised the issue resigned!)
Keep sending the emails and letters on issues that interest you.
JUST FOR FUN...
Two little old ladies, Dorace & Jackie were sitting on a park bench outside the local town hall where a flower show was in progress.
The short one, Jackie leaned over and said, 'Life is so boring. We never have any fun any more. For $10.00 I'd take my clothes off and streak through that stupid, boring flower show!'
'You're on!' said Dorace, holding up a $10.00 bill.
So Jackie slowly fumbled her way out of her clothes and, completely naked, streaked (as fast as an old lady can) through the door of the flower show.
Waiting outside, her friend soon heard a huge commotion inside the hall, followed by loud applause and shrill whistling.
'What happened?' asked her waiting friend.
'I won $1,000 as 1st prize for 'Best Dried Arrangement!'
FAIRER CARE FUNDING
Andrew Dilnot Report – reforming the funding for adult social care.
Andrew Dilnot is the economist who has spearheaded a government- commissioned report into the funding system for care for the elderly.
Is there anyone who has not got an opinion on the Andrew Dilnot report which was published this month? Just the very bare bones of how it will affect older people has given rise to many debates in the media and speculation as to where the funding will be found.
How the recommended plan will work for older people
“We are suggesting that people will be expected to contribute towards the first £35,000 of their care bill.”
“For people whose care costs rise above £35,000, the state will step in. “
“Those who have very little money will pay nothing for care, as they do now.”
“Currently anyone in a care home with assessed wealth of more than £23,250 receives no state support at all. We think this threshold should be increased to £100,000.”
How people will meet other bills
“Disability benefits will continue as they are now.”
Attendance Allowance and Disability Allowance will continue as now
“If people live at home, they have to pay for food, heating and accommodation. It is considered reasonable for people to continue to contribute to these costs so the proposals include a flat and fixed contribution towards basic living costs.”
Some thoughts –
Perhaps care homes are not the best means of looking after folk in later life. What are the alternatives?
Andrew Dilnot is offering new opportunities to adopt a realistic change in how we meet future costs. Is he answering that need?
Is he “easing the squeeze” on the middle classes?
He refers to baby boomers as the “jackpot generation”. Will they be able to pay their way or are they in fact supporting the rest of us, literally and/ or financially?
Your views would be appreciated.
BI-MONTHLY FORUM MEETINGS
The bi-monthly meetings all take place on a THURSDAY from 12.00 noon until 3.00.pm.
4TH AUGUST: Carlton Hotel, Truro
6TH OCTOBER: Dracaena Centre,
1ST DECEMBER: Green Lawns Hotel, Falmouth
Speakers at 4th August meeting will be: Kathryn Cobb, ICAS advocate. Tony Watts, Journalist and Editor (postponed from last meeting)
Transport can be arranged for those who really need it, but you will be asked to make a nominal contribution of £4.00 for your door to door service.
Lunch prior to the meeting is £5.00 per head. Please book your lunch with Judith.
MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE MEETINGS
Meetings of the Management Committee will take place monthly in the Planning meeting room at Circuit House at 10:30am on the second Wednesday of the month.
10TH AUGUST 9TH NOVEMBER 14TH SEPTEMBER 14TH DECEMBER 12TH OCTOBER
DIARY DATES 10TH SEPTEMBER Princess Pavilion Garden Party, Falmouth.
27TH SEPTEMBER David is hoping to have a presence at Penryn Fair Day. Please contact him if you would like to help him.
CONTACT THE FORUM JUDITH WHITELEY (CHAIRMAN) DAVID WHEELER (TREASURER)
EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org TELEPHONE: 01326 315305 TELEPHONE: 01326 374279
Mrs J Whiteley 17 Church Road Mylor Bridge. TR11 5NL
Disclaimer: the views expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the Editor or Carrick Over-50’s Forum
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