Club members unite to help curb loneliness in Sheffield suburbs

Meeting at the Vim and Vigour brunch club, Fulwood
Meeting at the Vim and Vigour brunch club, Fulwood
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A social club which aims to tackle loneliness among older people in Sheffield suburbs is nearing its first anniversary.

The Vim and Vigour brunch club happens every Wednesday at Fulwood Sports Club, offering activities, outings, quality food and social opportunities for over 60s living in the S10 area.

It was set up in January by former social worker Sally Kumar-Sood and her friend Katherine Lewis, and has attracted a core membership of around 20. Now Sally and Katherine, both mothers with young children, are looking to develop the club by adding meetings on Mondays and Tuesdays.

Sally, aged 37, who lives in Fulwood, said she felt loneliness among older people was a ‘real issue’ affecting society.

“As people get older they lose friends and lose confidence,” said Sally.

“I know a lot of people in the area who are in their houses for the majority of the time.”

Members range in age from 60 to 91. “A lot of the other clubs on offer seem a bit stuffy,” said Sally.

Members use the sports bar, which overlooks the bowling green and tennis courts. The cost per session is £4.50 which includes all food and drinks, use of games, newspapers and magazines and a book swap. One recent meeting featured a talk by a music psychologist.

“The people who come absolutely love it,” said Sally. Both she and Katherine, a former project manager at Deloitte, have funded the club themselves, she added.

“We’ve put a lot into it. Now we need more people to come.”

The Sheffield Telegraph is also supporting a £6m campaign led by the South Yorkshire Housing Association called Age Better in Sheffield, which aims to curb isolation through a series of projects.

n Call 07437 939278 for details.