Earlier this year Aldo Ferreira, 29, and Benny Defries, 91, struck up an unlikely friendship. Each week, Aldo would sit in Benny’s living room while they passed a ball to one another. The pair would then work through a list of exercises for an hour, which were intended to improve Benny’s strength and mobility.
Aldo, who works part-time while also studying at Anglia Ruskin University, is one of 34 volunteers who took part in a pilot scheme aimed at reducing the number of elderly falls in the area, therefore easing the burden on the local ambulance service. Elderly falls account for roughly 40% of all ambulance callouts to the homes of people over 65,
Meet The Volunteers and Restaurants Feeding The People In Their City Who Most Need Help
How Volunteers Are Helping Muslim Refugees Break Fast During Ramadan
Volunteer Goes Above And Beyond To Bring Joy To Vulnerable Romanian Kids
During the pilot period over 70 referrals were received from London Ambulance Service or falls teams working with the ambulance service. A total of 31 very frail clients, the majority of which were aged 85 and over, completed the full 6 to 8 week intervention.
Dr Allison Smith, Head of Strategy and Development at Royal Voluntary Service said: “We are very pleased with these results. Given the age and high levels of frailty of these clients and a relatively short period of intervention.
“Such findings are very encouraging and suggest greater gains might be made with a longer support period.”
HumanKind is HuffPost’s celebration of kindness, featuring people who do incredible things for others or the planet – transforming lives through small but significant acts. Get involved by joining us on Facebook or telling us about the people who you think deserve recognition for their kind works. You can nominate them here or share your personal story by emailing [email protected].