Bakersfield TARA has recently received funding from the National Lottery to help tackle social isolation among its members. The group, which was founded around 10 years ago, has been slowly growing in membership and now not only has members over the two sites but has spread into the bungalows around the area. The group holds two bingo sessions per week to members with a subsidised shop.
The funding will allow the group to offer a range of activities that promote physical and mental well-being, as well as social interaction. Chair exercise sessions will be led by a professional trainer and will focus on gentle movements to improve flexibility and strength. A gardening project will provide members with the opportunity to work together on a communal garden, promoting a sense of community and accomplishment and creating a calm peaceful place for residents to relax and unwind.
In addition, the group will organize day trips to local attractions, giving members the chance to explore their local area and spend time together. Finally, craft sessions will give members the opportunity to learn new skills and create something together.
The group’s members are thrilled with the new opportunities that the funding will provide. Many of them are older adults who live alone or have limited mobility, and they have been struggling with social isolation following the pandemic. The new activities will not only improve their physical and mental health, but also provide them with a sense of purpose and belonging within the community.
The group are grateful for the support from the National Lottery and are looking forward to implementing the new activities. They hope that the project will serve as a model for other community groups looking to address social isolation and promote well-being among their members.