Home Supporting peopleAdult Social Care Knowsley residents celebrate Falls Prevention Week with Everton in the Community
Cllr Christine Bannon speaks with residents at a table.

Knowsley residents celebrate Falls Prevention Week with Everton in the Community

by Guy Murphy

Everton in the Community has marked Falls Prevention Week with an awareness event at The Blue Base for participants of its Safe and Steady programme and members of the general public.

More than 80 people were joined by Club Ambassador Ian Snodin and Knowsley Council’s Cabinet Member for Health, Cllr Christine Bannon, at the event where they had the opportunity to try their hand at mini Olympic exercises such as boccia, indoor bowls and archery, enjoy mini relaxation and massage therapy sessions as well a graduation ceremony for the participants who have recently completed Everton in the Community’s 12-week Safe and Steady falls prevention programme.

Commissioned by Knowsley Council, Safe and Steady delivers a series of low-impact physical activity sessions for residents across Knowsley who have experience of falls or are at risk of falls.

The programme also delivers a comprehensive range of evidence-based health and wellbeing support to assist older people to improve health behaviours, wellbeing and overall quality of life.

All participants on the programme receive a health MOT and lifestyle support workshops from the charity’s Health and Wellbeing team to provide guidance on anxiety management techniques to reduce anxiety around falls.

100% of participants who completed the recent programme reported improved strength and balance as a result of their involvement in the programme and seven participants were able to walk around the garden for the first time in three years of more.

After attending the programme, 79-year-old Sylvia was able to walk up the stairs for the first time in 10 years and said: “I had a few trips and falls and one day somebody fell on me. We used to go the gym but we can’t do that anymore because of aches and pains so when this came up it was brilliant.

“They have taught us different exercises which we can do at home because they’re so easy. It’s also gets us out of the house and means that we meet new people, it’s just brilliant. I used to crawl up the stairs but now I’ve built strength so I can walk up the stairs normally.”

Ann O’Hara, Everton in the Community’s Falls Prevention Activity Coordinator, said: “It’s been fantastic to bring everyone together today and raise awareness around the risk of falls and how we can support them to live a better quality of life.

“We’ve had some great achievements from those people who attended the 12-week programme and they’ve all expressed an interest to join the next group. As well as improving their strength and balance, we’re also able to give them the opportunity to make new friendships and help reduce anxiety around falls.”

Cllr Christine Bannon, Cabinet Member for Knowsley Council, said: “I was absolutely delighted to meet our residents and hear the difference the Safe and Steady programme has made to their lives.

“We commissioned this programme through Everton in the Community to support our residents to continue to live independently and help prevent trips to the local A&E department. By improving their strength and balance, residents are living in their own homes longer and leading a better quality of life.”

Taking place from 18-24 September, Falls Prevention Week aims to reduce the risk of falls to help older people live independently and without anxiety over falling which is a leading cause of injury and death for older adults.

To find out more information about Safe and Steady and how you can get involved contact Ann O’Hara by emailing: healthreferrals@evertonfc.com or by calling: 0151 319 4018