As the world has gone all social media savvy, it seems that ‘a social life means a longer life’ – and we mean a social life that doesn’t involve sharing tweets, status updates or filtered selfies.
In a recent revelation (or rather reiteration for some) by 5 News at Manchester’s African Caribbean Care Group (ACCG), it was discovered that older people who meet regularly have a much higher life expectancy.
Of the retirees who meet in Manchester, one of them proudly said, “I am here 5 days a week, because when I come here I feel much better with everybody around me”.
The act of meeting one another is like a long-lost dream or ancient reality, when we look at our youth of today. The feature on 5 News gave a window into the benefits of older people using organisations like the ACCG as a ‘medicine’ for any of life’s emotional ills – ‘companionship’ being the main ingredient in the medicine.
General Manager at ACCG in Manchester Dorothy Evans told TNT that “people benefit from getting out and socialising with others than when they stay at home alone, where their well-being can deteriorate”.
Although the care group was originally set up for the elderly “back in 1983 by Mr Fibbs”, it now caters for families – “offering home care services as a way of joining up the services provided at the day centre with services in the community”, Evans told TNT.
Situated at the Claremont Resource Centre, ACCG’s funding primarily is from grants, whilst service users attain their personalised care through individual funding schemes from the City Council. The funds given to those in need, are geared to give the recipient more choice over the help they want to get – a sharp contrast to the public sector support which the government cut from ACCG back in 2011.
Nonetheless, ACCG is still running for the same reason Mr Fibbs sought to create it – to bring a much-needed difference in the lives of older and the often neglected in our community.
TNT Health Yasin Chinembiri