Older south Londoners get social thanks to £240k funding boost

Older people can get active, stay connected and give something back to society – thanks to a six-figure funding boost for a south London charity.

Run by Age UK Lambeth, MYsocial is a membership service which provides opportunities for people to make friends, take part in exercise, social and creative activities and use their skills to help others.

The scheme, which has over 600 members, is being funded through a grant of £240,000 over the next five years from City Bridge Trust – the City of London Corporation’s charity funder.

A City Bridge Trust spokesperson said:

“Research suggests keeping the mind and body active, maintaining friendships and doing something that makes us feel useful all have huge benefits to health and wellbeing.

“This scheme has proven itself to be a godsend during the pandemic and we’re delighted to be able to support it for the next five years, so that many more older south Londoners can benefit.”

The MYsocial scheme offers over 100 events each month including exercise groups, signing classes, brunch clubs, talks, boules sessions, Tai Chi and talks.

Members use their skills to help others, such as by training as physical activity mentors, working as a Reiki therapist or helping children in a local school with reading skills.

The service moved online during the coronavirus pandemic, attracting over 10,000 attendees to over 750 events, including an online arts festival.

Age UK Lambeth’s MYsocial system lead Dolores Waltham said:

“MYSocial helps people stay connected, get out and meet people and learn new things, something we know has a really positive impact and makes a huge difference to their lives.

“It’s also about helping older people feel like they’re not a burden but part of a solution to some of the issues society faces, offering them opportunities to use their skills and talents and give something back.”

More information about Age UK Lambeth’s MYsocial scheme is at https://mysocial.london/

The City of London Corporation’s charity funder, City Bridge Trust, is London’s biggest independent grant giver, making grants of over £25 million a year to tackle disadvantage across the capital – www.citybridgetrust.org.uk

Case study

Mary, 82, from Clapham, has been a MYsocial member since 2016, she enjoys Computer Classes, Coach trips, and visiting places of historical interest.

She said: “I have made lots of friends and enjoyed new activities since joining MYsocial. I love that there are activities at the weekend, I used to never go out at weekends, but now I'm so busy, it's wonderful.”

Picture captions

(1) Age UK Lambeth members getting ready to join in the Waterloo Carnival.

(2) Members off on a coach trip to Bournemouth.

(3) An art class in South Norwood.

Notes to editors

The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK – www.cityoflondon.gov.uk

The City Corporation is the sole trustee of Bridge Houses Estates, a charity founded in 1097 to maintain London Bridge, and Members of its Court of Common Council form the Bridge House Estates Board.

Bridge House Estates is now responsible for maintaining Tower, London, Southwark, Millennium and Blackfriars Bridges, and its grants team, City Bridge Trust – founded in 1995 – gives out over £25 million a year to good causes across the capital – www.citybridgetrust.org.uk



Tim Fletcher | Media officer – public services

City of London Corporation

07738 862229 | tim.fletcher@cityoflondon.gov.uk