A five-year programme which will benefit older people in the Carnlough area was launched on Friday.
The project has received grant aid of £74,000 from the Big Lottery Fund
The “Connecting Older People” initiative will be delivered by Carnlough Community Association.
Patricia McConnell, chairperson, said: “The Connecting Older People project will not only support the ongoing bowling club but will also expand the well-received luncheon club and purchase much-needed equipment for both projects.
“This will allow older people to remain or become involved socially within the local community supporting each other and creating friendships that will keep them active and healthy,”
At Easter, 70 fruit baskets will be distributed to elderly residents free of charge.
This autumn, 70 “keep warm keep well” packs will be delivered to the district’s senior citizens.
In the meantime, the Association is planning to extend the popular luncheon club which takes place at Glenlough Community Centre. As well as a three-course meal, participants can enjoy entertainment, complementary therapies, advice andoutings.
Patricia added: “The 70 Easter fruit baskets and 70 keep warm, keep well, packs allow the community to reach out to those most vulnerable and extend a hand of friendship and warmth encouraging more older people to become actively involved in the various ongoing projects.
Big Lottery Fund NI committee member, Peter Osborne, said: “Carnlough Community Association’s Connecting Older people will support some of the most isolated and vulnerable older people in the rural areas of Carnlough, Glenarm, Broughshane, Braid and Cushendall.
“The support services being offered will help to tackle the older people’s social isolation, encourage them to socialise, improve their health and teach them new skills.”
Colm McDaid, of Supporting Communities NI, congratulated Carnlough Community Association on its continued success and paid tribute to the commitment and drive of volunteers, which he said, had brought this project to fruition.
If anyone is interested in attending the weekly bowling club or luncheon club, they should contact the community office on 28 886188 or via email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Expression of interest forms are now available for the Easter fruit baskets, so if you know someone who may be interested in benefiting from this scheme, contact the community office before Friday March 1.