25th April 2024
Live Longer Better – Walking Groups

As part of our BNSSG ICB-funded Ageing Well work, Wesport has developed a strong partnership with Age UK South Gloucestershire to develop a supported Walking Programme. Working closely with Philippa Gale - the Walking Project Coordinator​, there is now an established referral route​ to engage those who do not normally engage in physical activity​ and for whom walking is a great first step.

Please view our short video below which gives a good sense of the impact from this work.

Aims of the project:
  • Enhance physical wellbeing - walking once a week​
  • Enhance mental wellbeing - fresh air and exercise​
  • Enhance social wellbeing - encouragement to join a group​
The current statistics:

113 referrals​. 63 home visits​. 40 walkers​

Case study:

Elizabeth self-referred onto the project after accessing Age UK SG support in other areas​ She described herself as having poor mobility, rarely going out and she had ‘an awful fear of falling’​. Elizabeth has now been involved in a group walk since July 2023​ and finds herself walking a lot further than she used to because she is now accompanied. She has been supported to purchase a walking aid​ and loves meeting other people, learning about their life stories and interests​.

‘It has changed my whole lifestyle. I really look forward to it and instead of sitting at home, cogitating, getting bored and looking at the telly, you are going out, meeting people, learning things. It’s not all doom and gloom. The minute you get together, you forget all that.’

Great news if that the Walking project has secured future funding support by being incorporated into the Welcome Home service. It really complements Welcome Home because it supports people that have recently been discharged from hospital.

People are often de-skilled and deconditioned as a result of hospitalisation. The walking project helps to build people’s confidence, and supports them at their pace.

It improves their social contact an gives people the self-belief that they can resume the activities that they enjoyed before going into hospital.

For some people it is the difference between remaining at home and having to go into a care environment.