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A big thank you to everyone who took part in the Age UK Rotherham Virtual 10K. Please see new item on the event here

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The coronavirus lockdown is extra hard for isolated and shielded older people and has had a huge impact on the finances of Age UK Rotherham. Nevertheless our team has continued to provide essential services supporting vulnerable and shielded older people in the borough and their carers.

In addition, due to the current restrictions, our Rotherham 10k and Fun Run 2020 event on 17th May has been postponed until further notice. However, we are delighted now to partner with the organisers to bring you the Virtual Rotherham 10K and an opportunity to help us to be there for those who need us both now and in the future.

The Rotherham 10K has previously attracted hundreds of runners of all abilities and ages and one effect of the physical isolation measures has been a significant increase in the number of people who had started to run to get some exercise and protect their health and well being during the lockdown measures. We want to encourage this activity so:

We are inviting everyone who can to lace up your running shoes for the ‘Virtual Rotherham 10K’ and to help Age UK Rotherham to be there for older people in Rotherham.

On Sunday 17 May, residents across Rotherham will be able to take part in the charity race from their own front door and will help to raise £10,000 to support elderly people in the borough.

The annual Rotherham 10K race and fun run is organised by Rotherham Harriers & Athletics Club, local running groups and Rotherham Council, to encourage residents to get healthy and raise money for good causes.

This year, the organisers have been working hard to see how best they can support Age UK Rotherham during lockdown while keeping participants safe, so have decided to host a virtual race through social media.

People can either run 10K on the day of the race or walk/run 1K a day starting on Friday 8 May finishing on the 17 May, allowing everyone to be in it together.

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People can either run 10K on the day of the race or walk/run 1K a day starting on Friday 8 May finishing on the 17 May, allowing everyone to be in it together.

Rotherham Council’s Head of Creative Programming and Engagement, Leanne Buchan, said: “During these difficult times, charities need support more than ever so they can continue to do the essential work they do to support the most vulnerable people in our communities. The Rotherham 10K has been a huge success over the last few years and has encouraged so many people across the borough to put on their running shoes and do something for charity.

“The lockdown has meant that we are no longer able to host a public race, but we know that residents still want to do their bit. Now everyone can get involved in a way that suits them.”

However you complete your 10K, either by running or walking, all in one go or over a number of shorter runs, keep friends and family up to date by sharing pictures of your efforts on social media.

For every person who takes part and posts their daily exercise with the hashtag #10Kfor10K, organisers will send a digital certificate and those who complete their 10K and donate to Age UK Rotherham with a suggested donation of £10 will have the opportunity to receive a medal.

Chairman of the Rotherham 10K Local Organising Committee, Steve Gaines, said: “I know how disappointed we were when we had to cancel the 2020 Rotherham 10K planned for Sunday 17 May.

“In an attempt to provide the people of Rotherham with a way to keep fit, active and healthy during the difficult times of the lockdown period, and more importantly to enable the event charity, Age UK Rotherham, to continue to deliver its work to help some the vulnerable members of society in these difficult times; the committee has decided to organise a virtual 10K event”

Age UK Rotherham’s Ambassador, Ray Mathews, said: “The Rotherham 10K, Fun run and Schools challenge race had to be abandoned this year. But to see the people of all ages in Rotherham, lace up their running shoes and complete The Virtual Rotherham 10K would be amazing

Help us to not only provide much needed funding but support for Age UK Rotherham. This Lockdown has hit the ageing population of Rotherham hard, emphasis on protecting the elderly has had a massive impact on the resources of Age UK Rotherham. Please help by taking part and supporting

It’s not just about raising funds for an important charity it’s also about getting people active, with this being one of the five ways to wellbeing, so we will be posting links to pages for fitness tips, couch to 5K programmes, links to local running clubs that you could join once this is over

We hope that everyone will get on board with the race and we can’t wait to see pictures of people getting out there and getting active.”

However you complete your 10K, either by running or walking, all in one go or over a number of shorter runs, keep friends and family up to date by sharing pictures of your efforts on social media.

For every person who takes part and posts their daily exercise with the hashtag #10Kfor10K, organisers will send a digital certificate and those who complete their 10K and donate to Age UK Rotherham with a suggested donation of £10 will have the opportunity to receive a medal.

Click here to to visit the Rotherham 10K home page

Click here to visit the rotherham 10K Facebook page

Click the image below to make your donation

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Background

The lockdown is hard for older people who are disproportionately negatively affected by Covid19 than the general population as follows:

  • Statistically they are more likely be very ill and to die as a result of the virus – the government has therefore placed additional emphasis on protection of all people over 70 and advised that they self isolate as much as possible, even if they are not in the ‘shielded’ group (who have received letters from the NHS);
  • They are more likely to be in the ‘shielded’ group i.e. have long term health conditions and therefore not be able to leave home at all;
  • They are likely therefore to have additional needs for practical support (shopping, medication collection etc.) at this time.
  • They are more likely to be socially isolated and lonely even in normal circumstances and many live alone and may not have access to their usual access to their normal support.

The lockdown had a huge impact on our charity finances. Around 50% of our annual income comes from our social enterprise, charity shops and fund raising activity, all of which we have had to suspend due to government restrictions. The postponement and potential cancellation of Rotherham 10K is part of this.

As well as ensuring that our staff and volunteers are safe we wanted to continue to support older people in Rotherham as much as we can, with a focus on working in partnership wherever possible to do this.

In the first few weeks of the coronavirus pandemic lockdown we continued to be there for older people in Rotherham.

  • We received 871 calls from older people or their carers
  • We extended the hours of our Advice Line and helped 99 people
  • Our Care & Support Services provided 829 support actions for vulnerable older people
  • Our team made 657 reassurance calls to vulnerable older people helping to reduce isolation and loneliness
  • We made 128 deliveries of essential shopping to shielded or isolated older people
  • We prepared 44 meals in people’s homes maintaining social distancing
  • We worked in partnership with John Lewis to provide 20 Comfort Packages for vulnerable older people
  • We are a partner in the Rotherham Community Hub and contributed to developing guidance for Rotherham Heroes to reduce isolation and loneliness for vulnerable older people.

Now we are beginning to look ahead to recovery from the lockdown and to ensuring the short and long term future of the Charity. We are appealing now for help from people in Rotherham so that we can keep being there for all older people.

 

For latest figures see our weekly update here