Ken’s, South Leeds Life Diary for 2022 and into 2023.
I thought would look back and forward to the various volunteer groups I have started or am involved with and to new friends and new beginnings.
I’m Looking forward to 2023, in April this year it will be 10 years since I took the South Leeds Life Community Reporters course, run by Jeremy to allow me to write and upload local stories to the South Leeds Life website. Also, some of my stories go in South Leeds Life’s monthly newspaper.
This will be my first personal blog of the year and I want to thank my many new friends and others I’ve known for many a year.
Nina Dales, Lee, Laura, Henri and Alfie. What a fantastic family they are and they’ve helped me more than I can say.
Nina and Laura came one day when things were getting on top of me (due to my poor mental health) and cleaned my kitchen for me, while I got on with other things.
Nina, also makes me occasional meals, when I’m down and don’t feel like cooking for myself. I hope in my own way, I help them.
In February this year (2023) it will be five years since I started The Memory Café, at Middleton Elderly Aid, after I’ve been part of many Memory Cafes in the area. The Memory Café is now looked after by Samantha Ely, the Chief Officer of Middleton Elderly Aid. I join the group every month and also bring cake.
The Memory Café is on the last Wednesday of the month at the Middleton Elderly Aid Social Centre, Acre Road, Leeds LS10 4LF at 1:30pm.
We all look back at memories in scrap books where we add photos and comments. Every time we open our scrap books brings back memories. Occasionally we have guests at the Memory Café, such as Councillors, etc.
Another birthday will be The Arm in Arm Walking Group. It will be five years old in February 2023. I started up a Walking Group at BITMO’s GATE, in Belle Isle, when I lived near there.
Then when I moved back to Middleton, I made myself known to Samantha Ely, of Middleton Elderly Aid. Sam asked me about my hobbies and any voluntary work I did while in Belle Isle.
So, after talking to Sam, the walking group was born. I needed to go on a First Aid course first, and then showed my DBS Certificate, which I got at BITMO GATE, so was no need to apply for another. Then the walks started.
The walking group has around 20 members, around 10-12 of us go on the walk at any one time, as some volunteer at other parts of the centre. Founder members of the group are Walter, Eddie, Mavis and myself. It became clear after a while we needed more group leaders, as the group grew, and also in case I was on holiday. So, Walter and Christine were sent on a group leaders’ course at St George’s Centre, Middleton.
We walk from the centre every Tuesday and Thursday at 1:30pm for two hours. Stopping off at Leeds Urban Bike Park café for refreshments served by Nicola, Alicia and the staff. Nicola and her family have become good friends and always look out for me.
We had our second Arm in Arm Walking Group Christmas lunch at The Leeds Urban Bike Park café, last December, where everyone had a good time. Joanne helped out that day and has also become good friends over the last few years.
I apply for grants for the walking group, which allowed us to buy shirts advertising the group. I will be after another grant in the spring for shirts for new members of the group.
At a later date I also moved my South Leeds Life News Café from BITMO’s GATE to Middleton Elderly Aid. At this moment I’m writing this blog, while at the News Café.
At Acre Court where I live, we have Jenny as the new manager while Alison (Warden) is on a course. Jenny also works at Leasowe Court and in the past has come to Acre Court when Alison is away on holiday.
New manager Jenny has helped me a lot, and says her door is always open. I’ve got to mention Wendy the cleaner who does a fantastic job and always has a smile on her face. Jenny holds regular meetings to let all know what is happening at the Court.
Although I’m no longer part of Julie Holme’s Ancestry Group, I still see her and Chris every so often, and remain good friends. I hope to re-join one day.
I’m still hoping for a positive outcome for my driving licence this year. Because I have dememita, diabetes and eyesight problems I have to have a medical check every year. At the time of writing this I’m still awaiting the outcome, whether I’m allowed to drive for another year.
I re-joined another Dementia Friendly memory café last year. It’s held at The Black Bull Pub in Rothwell, Paula runs this, giving out tea, coffee and biscuits. I go along with Frank, who makes sure he gets his share of any food that’s on offer. The café is open to all who have memory issues and their partners.
The group gets together every Monday at 1pm. I take picture quizzes with me for the group, which keeps their minds active.
I had a few health issues in 2022 and hope 2023 is a better year for me.
While on another subject I would like to thank Nurse Practitioner Sharron Gill of Middleton Park Health Centre for all her help last year and Gwen on Reception who does her best to get me appointments when I need them.
Kenneth Ingram, blogger, reporter for South Leeds Life, BITMO GATE, Acre Court and others.
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