Street Wardens for the elderly
We all know we are an increasingly ageing society. We all know there are insufficient funds and provisions for our elderly as it stands, so how do we help and support the elderly?
One idea I have had is for street and shop wardens! Bonkers though it may initially sound, this could really work on the ground so to speak. Volunteer wardens, people keen to help and protect the elderly would have access to a locked store where a wheelchair would be housed, along with a first aid kit, and other essential items. Wardens would be visible to the public and in time elderly people and other members of the public would respect them as a “go to” in times of need. Rather like the local Bobby on the beat used to be when funding allowed!
Wardens would also help elderly people shop, helping maintain one of the daily activities that form an essential part of life. Wonderful as internet shopping is, elderly people need human interaction in the form of shop assistants, perhaps the only person to share a smile on any given day. How many times have you seen someone struggle to reach something on a shelf, looking in vain for a member of staff to help?
This idea stemmed from me feeling helpless one day, watching an elderly lady struggling to get her fish and chip supper home. Holding her tasty package in one hand and her stick in the other, I could see every step was a challenge. Painfully slow, her supper was going to be stone cold. If I had been driving, I would have stopped and offered her a lift, as I have done for others before they nearly collapsed. I had nothing, wanting merely to scoop her up and get her home, I had no wheelchair, nothing.