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Think about older people in Norfolk during the cold snap, charity urges

Snow in Norwich. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Snow in Norwich. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2018

People have been urged to think about vulnerable neighbours as the cold snap continues in Norfolk and Suffolk.

Age UK Norfolk called on people to keep an extra eye on older people, to make sure they have everything they need during the sub-zero temperatures.

And they said older people should make sure they are warm enough, have plenty of hot drink and food, but make sure they keep moving around.

Linda Matthews, advice and advocacy manager for Age UK Norfolk, said: “We would advise older people not to go out if they don’t have to.

“They should keep their homes heated, or concentrate on heating one room if they cannot afford it. We would say they should make sure they have plenty of hot drinks and food, but also that they keep moving about, as it can cause problems if people sit still for too long.”

And she urged relatives and neighbours to check up on older people. She said: “Many older people are very independent, but it won’t do any harm just to check that they have everything they need.

“We got plenty of warning about this weather, so many will have already got in what they need, but it might be that some people could do with a few things from the shop.

“It’s worth just knocking on their doors to ask them if there’s anything they need.”

Every winter there are around 620 additional deaths in Norfolk compared to the summer – many of these deaths could be prevented.

And Norfolk Community Foundation is urging people to donate to its Surviving Winter campaign, which works with Age UK Norfolk and Norwich Foodbank to ensure people get help. Helen Tuttle, from the foundation, said: “With temperatures dropping again this week we know there are many people within our local community struggling to stay warm and healthy.

“From those isolated in their homes, finding it harder to venture out, to those homeless on the streets in freezing temperatures, there are many reasons the cold can greatly affect health and wellbeing.

“The Surviving Winter appeal is on hand to ensure the common choice between ‘heating or eating’ is avoidable. Working in partnership with Age UK Norfolk and Norwich Foodbank, small grants are being provided to the most vulnerable individuals who may face crisis. Your money can still make a difference and support those managing fuel and food costs on low budgets through the Surviving Winter appeal.”

People can donate online at https://tinyurl.com/ybnkavcs

Cheques, payable to Norfolk Community Foundation, can also be sent to ‘Surviving Winter Appeal’, Norfolk Community Foundation, St James Mill, Whitefriars, Norwich NR3 1TN.

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