Age Concern North Norfolk gears up to welcome people back inside

Jenny Smith, left, senior support worker at Age Concern North Norfolk, collects the meals from chef

Jenny Smith, left, senior support worker at Age Concern North Norfolk, collects the meals from chef Lynn Reid, ready to be delivered with their 'Meals on Heels' scheme. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

A north Norfolk day centre for older people is gearing up to reopen after months of operating remotely.

The team at Age Concern North Norfolk (ACNN), in Cremer Street, Sheringham did not let the pandemic stop them from supporting their service users but have said the increased isolation created by the pandemic has taken its toll.

Over the past 18 months ACNN has telephoned service users to check in on them and run a successful meal delivery service, called 'meals on heels' which, four days a week, has delivered hot, affordable meals to people across north Norfolk.

New Day Centre manager, Anneliese Maerz, at Age Concern North Norfolk. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

New Day Centre manager, Anneliese Maerz, at Age Concern North Norfolk. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

Anneliese Maerz, the centre manager said ACNN's meal delivery service, which provides around 17-25 people with a hot meal each day had been one of the successes of the pandemic.

"It's £3 for a main meal and dessert, it's not bad and we get very good feedback from people. They can have it every day Tuesday to Friday or just one day a week, it fits in with whatever their choices are.


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"It's done really well, over the last month we delivered more than 300 meals and it's gradually going up each month."

Jenny Smith, left, senior support worker at Age Concern North Norfolk, collects the meals from chef

Jenny Smith, left, senior support worker at Age Concern North Norfolk, collects the meals from chef Lynn Reid, ready to be delivered with their 'Meals on Heels' scheme. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

After being forced to close during the pandemic, Ms Maerz said ACNN had used the forced period of closure to give the centre on Cremer Street a fresh lick of paint and to do some much-needed refurbishments.

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She said after doing its best to support people during lockdown she and her team were looking forward to being able to welcome people back in person, especially those who had been socially isolated during the pandemic.

Hazel Harris, support worker at Age Concern North Norfolk, sets out to deliver the meals in their 'M

Hazel Harris, support worker at Age Concern North Norfolk, sets out to deliver the meals in their 'Meals on Heels' scheme. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

Ms Maerz said: "We're working towards reopening in July and we would like people to be able to come in not be restricted in numbers and contact with people because it's really hard to social distance when you are doing an activity with people.

"The pandemic has had a big impact. You just see the deterioration with the lack of stimulation, not being able to meet family, not going out that's had a massive impact on people making them even more isolated," she said.

Age Concern North Norfolk at Sheringham. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Age Concern North Norfolk at Sheringham. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021


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