Services for Older People
“Working with older South Asian women to reduce isolation and vulnerability...”
Roshni’s BME Elders project works with older Asian women (50+) and is devoted to improving their quality of life through the provision of a cultural and language specific support service. The project has been running since 2008 when Roshni identified the need for this niche service, as older Asian women were reluctant to and failing to access and take up mainstream services.
The support offered is:
- Increase in awareness on health and wellbeing issues
- Access to group sessions and coffee mornings on a regular basis
- Meet new people in safe and friendly environment
- A range of social, recreational and therapeutic activities
- Information and advice on benefits, personal safety and more
- Advice on existing services for older people
- Help to access services that you may need
More about us
Roshni’s BME Elders Project focuses on empowering 50yrs+ South Asian women in Sheffield by increasing their awareness on relevant issues and enabling access to mainstream services for help with issues around isolation, poverty, health & safety. These issues are often heightened due to cultural, linguistic and financial factors, which our project aims to address and overcome. Our group sessions have included information/awareness raising on mental health, dementia, oral health, healthy eating for diabetes, cancer awareness, benefits awareness and so on. These sessions have been run in partnership with agencies such as Ship Shape, St Lukes, Breast Cancer and Care, Cancer Support Centre, Stroke Association and The Sheffield CAB. These sessions were also an opportunity for our clients to go out and socialise, as well as receive one to one support from staff members on hand if they need it.
This model has a strong focus to:
- Alleviate isolation
- Increase self-esteem and confidence
- Increase community participation
- Improve physical health
- Decrease depression and stress
This is a direct reflection on the findings from project monitoring data as well as research and analysis of social trends within the community.
About our clients
Our service users are women all over the age of 50. Many of these women are widows or women whose relationships with their children have broken down. Others are women who have lived in extended families and who are now living isolated from them and the community. They are often unable to manage their own affairs, lack self-esteem and confidence and suffer from multiple and complex health problems or are disabled. They are mainly socially excluded.
Client A is an existing Roshni client referred to the BME Elders project by the Empowerment Project. She was extremely isolated after having lived alone for a number of years as she had divorced several years ago and her children had left home. She was unsure of how to reengage with the wider community and had issues with managing day to day tasks. The BME Elders project was able to assist Client A by providing emotional support as well as practical support to increase her well being. We sign posted the client to a shelter, a housing charity who worked on securing adequate housing for the client as she wanted to move house. We followed up by maintaining regular contact with her support worker at Shelter and assisting where needed. We also invited the client to activities and events where she could meet other women from her community. The client is now more confident and has established her old relationships with family and made some new friends.
Client B was referred to the BME Elders project by a concerned family doctor. Client was extremely isolated due to mobility and health issues. She is also a full time carer for her ill husband. Client B was unable to communicate on the phone effectively due to her health so we arranged to visit the client in her home. During our home visit we were able to better understand the problems that were being faced by the client. We were also able to meet with her daughter (who provided occasional care for her parents) and her husband. After discussions with the client and her family, we realised that the client suffered from isolation and also stress from caring for her husband. We referred the client to Sheffield Adult Social Care team to assign a social worker to the client. Through follow up and partnership work, the client has now been offered financial assistance through self directed support and has also had mobility adaptations made to her home to assist her further.
Client C was referred to the project by her family. They felt that client was extremely depressed and felt that she had no support. The family had found it very hard to cope with their mother’s deteriorating mental health. We visited the client on a number of occasions to sort out benefits which were available to her. We also referred the client to Sheffield Adult Social Care team who were later able to provide adaptations to the client’s home and a commode to assist her when she was alone. In addition, we referred the client to Sheffield Mind to help the client with her mental health issues, as well as making her GP aware of her state. We noticed during the visits that her daughters were having trouble with their own issues and referred them to an IAPT worker and Roshni Empowerment Project.
For further information, please contact one of our staff members at Roshni on 0114 250 8898
Anyone who is from a South Asian background, female and aged 50 years+ can be referred to the project.