The LinkAge BME Elders Groups Consortium has passed its 2nd Anniversary! It held its 11th meeting in November.
Back in September 2012, LinkAge started a bi monthly meeting for the Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) community elders groups across the City. LinkAge offers support to any BME Elders group, some of which have been running for over 30 years and are run by elders themselves.
This group has continued to attract group leaders, trustees and committee members representing South Asian, African Caribbean, Chinese and Somali communities.
The format of the meetings follow an agenda that is older person focused, allowing plenty of time for information exchange, networking and discussion. We have had many practitioners coming to keep the group up to date on topical issues including a GP practice manager, ‘All Aboard’, HealthWatch, BAB and Public Health.
The elders are in the driving seat – they share successes, raise issues of concern and are enabled to be part of a united voice.
The Consortium have had training workshops from Voscur and at the January meeting, will train to become champions for HealthWatch.
The BME elders groups are fully involved in the annual Celebrating Age Festival, hosting their own events and putting on a Consortium event annually. This year we had the ‘Go With The Flow’ world dance day hosted by the MX Elders which saw Cleo Lake, dance tutor leading up to 50 elders from South Asian and African Caribbean groups and CAF visitors dancing Reggae, African and Bhangra! It was fabulous. We also launched our first ‘Walking Stick’ dance lead by Fergie who is known in MX for her great dance moves, using her walking stick as a dance prop and drum beat!
The Consortium members know how to mix business and pleasure!
Shelagh Hetreed, BME Elders Sustainability Worker.