A charity that uses music to brighten the lives of the elderly in Somerset is one of three finalists in the Educational Category of the National Lottery Awards 2012.
Golden-Oldies started in Bath just five years ago. Sir Cliff Richard is patron and he is leading an appeal to the public across the UK to vote for the Goldies Schools’ project called Jubilee Time after Time.
From just four sessions in 2008, Goldies as it has become fondly known now runs its’ daytime fun singing and activity sessions across the South West. Hundreds of Goldies now look forward each week to attending their local group.
Goldies sessions take place in Street and Shepton Mallet. New sessions are planned for 2013. Two Street Goldies, Rose Sugar and Mike Wheeler hit the headlines earlier this year when they were the first Goldies to marry each other.
Session leaders in mid-Somerset are Jane Harris in Shepton Mallet and Gina Cleverley in Street.
Sessions take place across the South West from Weston-super-Mare to Swindon and from Gloucester down to Yeovil. Earlier this year, the charity launched Goldies Cymru and there will be six sessions in South Wales by the end of 2012.
Charity founder Grenville Jones took the original four sessions himself in the Bath area. There are now a total of 25 dedicated session leaders.
An independent study by academics at the University of Bath concluded: “Being a Goldie enhances participants health and well-being and also strengthens and stimulates communities.”
Last year the charity was successful in winning a public vote for its Jubilee Time after Time project and a grant from the People’s Millions Lottery Fund.
Patron Sir Cliff Richard explains: “Jubilee Time after Time was a Big Lottery Goldies project this year. It encouraged schools to open their doors to the elderly in their communities and involve them in Jubilee-themed projects, it was a fantastic success, covering many different subjects, which included, of course, lots of singing times together.”
Each year the National Lottery makes thousands of awards. It selected the projects that went forward in the seven categories of the National Awards. Jubilee Time after Time was one of ten in the educational category and a public vote during July saw it come out as one of three that now progresses to the final stages of voting.
Sir Cliff added: “We are over the moon that Jubilee Time after Time is in the Lottery Awards 2012 national final, but we need everyone to vote to help us to win.
“Please pick up a phone, or go online, to make Jubilee Time after Time the winner of the Education Awards in the BBC televised final which will be on your screens In December.
“We want to brighten hundreds more lonely lives. Please vote for us to win this award so we can reach out and put more smiles on more faces.”
Vote for Jubilee Time after Time by calling 0844 836 9685 or register your free vote online at www.lotterygoodcauses.org.uk/awards.