Please be patient — Helping people to get ‘out and about’

In News by Bembridge PC

Is someone you know finding the ‘new normal’ challenging to navigate?

Age Friendly Island and its partners have created a set of ‘out and about cards’ to help people to feel more confident to navigate social distancing and other Covid-secure measures that are now in place.

With the lockdown restrictions easing, Emma Lincoln, Age UK’s Age Friendly project manager, said some people were finding the new situations challenging.

She said: “In our high streets, shops, cafes, pubs and hairdressers and on the buses and ferries we are all navigating the new measures that the government has brought in as a response to coronavirus.

“We are social distancing, wearing face coverings, being served from behind a clear screen, and using contactless payments.

“For some people these measures bring additional difficulties due to a medical condition or disability. For others the idea of returning to places that have changed can be daunting.”

The new cards, part-funded by the National Lottery Community Fund, are designed to be used to let people know that the cardholder finds these new situations challenging.

Around 500 sets have been produced for the initial pilot that seeks to find out how useful people find them. If the feedback is positive, more sets will be produced.

These cards are for those who:

  • find social distancing challenging — they may have a visual impairment or have difficulty in understanding social distancing instructions;
  • are exempt from wearing a face covering under the government guidance;
  • find the use of face coverings by other people challenging — face coverings make communication difficult for those who rely on lip reading and facial expressions;
  • feel they need time and space — they may have been shielding and are just starting to get back out and about.

Businesses are also being encouraged to use posters within their premises for people using the ‘out and about’ cards and to support those using them to engage effectively with their services.

Posters can be downloaded here: www.iwight.com/campaigntoolkits

If you or someone you know would benefit from using these cards, please contact Age UK on (01983) 525282 or for more information, click here.