An invited audience of 70, that included the Mayor of Northampton Cllr Rufia Ashraf, the Mayor of Daventry Cllr Karen Tweedale and 12 people on Zoom, attended Age UK Northampton’s 25th annual general meeting Moulton Community Centre on Tuesday 16th November.
Chris Duff explained that the past year has been extremely detrimental for the wellbeing of many older people in Northamptonshire and explained that the charity had focused on maintaining as many services as possible, keeping its NHS contracted services going throughout the financial year. Chris reported that the charity’s hospital-based services were very busy at the start of the pandemic in March 2020 but demand reduced as the number of older patients in hospital subsequently reduced markedly. Although the charity was forced to suspend services such as toenail cutting and domestic cleaning during the early lockdowns other services, such as Extra Help at the End of Life and Social Prescribing, have been open and available throughout the year.
Presentations by Age UK Northamptonshire managers provided an overview of the support the charity provided during a particularly difficult year. The charity introduced a range of emergency services during the initial lockdowns, providing 9,226 welfare calls, 1,659 befriending calls, 6,723 hot meals, 2,103 shopping trips, 234 prescription collections and over 1,400 other positive interventions.
The total number of active clients on the charity’s database reduced slightly from 15,678 at April 2020 to 15,452 by the end of March 2021 as some services saw a reduction in the number of new clients because of the coronavirus restrictions. The Extra Help at the End of Life Service, Information & Advice Service, KGH Support Service and Hospital Discharge & Community Team saw increases in demand. Chris Duff added “It is also positive to note that our services are used by people across the county, with a good spread of clients’ postcodes reflecting the more rural areas as well as urban centres of population. Our records also indicate that ethnicity, where declared, matches the profile of the older population from which our clients are drawn.
“We would like to thank everyone who attended our AGM, in person and on Zoom. We are proud to work with organisations and elected representatives from across the county. With your support we can continue to make a positive difference to thousands of vulnerable older people in our community every year.”
Age UK Northamptonshire annual report with audited accounts is now available on its website or paper copies can be requested.
To find out more about the services and support provided by Age UK Northamptonshire, or to get involved with fundraising activities, please visit www.ageuk.org.uk/northamptonshire or call 01604 611200.