Over one hundred and fifty mainly senior residents of Barnet attended the Barnet Seniors’ Assembly Spring Event held at Woodhouse College in Finchley on the 13th April 2016. The organisers were a little apprehensive as to numbers this time given the new venue. We shouldn’t have been; people turned up soon after 10am and began chatting to friends, old and new over a cup of tea or coffee.
There was an abundance of information stalls for people to browse including: AgeUK Barnet, London Borough of Barnet, Healthwatch, Reader Group, Arts Depot, Mencap, Mind and Mood, The Disability Foundation, Finchley War Memorial Project, Sense, Altogether Better, CAB, Hearing Loss Group, U3A and Friend In Need (FIN).
Deputy Mayor, Cllr. Alison Cornelius, accompanied by Ageing Well Champion, Cllr. Graham Old, opened proceedings and praised BSA saying it is a fantastic organisation. She went on to say how impressed she is with the numbers of volunteers in Barnet that do important jobs.
Speakers were Jaqui Emden from Advocacy In Barnet talking on the subject of scam awareness. Jaqui was joined by Pedro Carvalho of the Metropolitan Police. Valerie Harrison, lay member of the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) spoke about patient engagement and matters in decision making. The speeches were followed by a fun session of movement to music before lunch.
Throughout the lunch period background music was played by Abdul Williams, on the steel pan drums. There was plenty of time for networking and socialising before the afternoon session began.
During the afternoon, a brief progress report on the BSA work to date was given as was details of the Altogether Better schemes that are running in Burnt Oak, Edgware, East Finchley, High Barnet and East Barnet.
The last thirty minute session was taken up with stallholders being invited to address the audience and tell them about their services and involvement in the community. There was an opportunity for everyone to let BSA know of any group activities that are available in their area or any lacking that they would benefit from.
In her closing remarks, Nila Patel, BSA Chair thanked all for their contribution, she reiterated the importance of networking and getting to know what is happening in Barnet. She urged everyone to work better together. She then reminded everyone that BSA will be hosting the Silver Sunday event at Hendon Town Hall on 2nd October 2016.