Stafford and Rural Homes | Sing-a-long success for SARH scheme
BeConnected Party pic

Sing-a-long success for SARH scheme

A special event has helped to celebrate the ongoing success of an award-winning project that’s helping to tackle loneliness in Stafford and surrounding areas.

Led by Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH), BeConnected includes a programme of fun and free activities including arts, crafts, gardening and exercise classesand one of the highlights is an annual party to help beat the winter blues.

During the party at St Bertelin’s Church Hall in Holmcroft Road, Stafford, more than 40 BeConnected customers, carers and SARH employees joined the housing association’s Chief Executive Karen Armitage in a sing-along led by local singer Holly Reynolds. After enjoying a buffet lunch they danced away the afternoon to hits from the 50s, 60s and 70s.

The event also proved a fitting farewell to Project Worker, Susan Cooke, who has led BeConnected since its successful launch in 2017.

Now Susan is set to retire but says she’ll be staying in touch with all the friends she has made over the last two years.

“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed working on the project, I’ve met so many wonderful people,” she said. “I’m sure I’ll be helping out as one of the volunteers who are so vital to its success.”

Amongst those taking part in the event were Kenneth and Christine Bowe from The Bothy, near Stafford who said they thoroughly enjoyed the party.

“As you get older it gets harder to get out and about and since Kenneth suffered a stroke it has been even more difficult, particularly in the cold, dark winter months,” Christine explained. “BeConnected has proved a great way to make new friends and feel part of the community.”

Karen Armitage added: “Once again, the BeConnected winter ‘Pick Me Up’ party was a huge success and it proved a great way to lift the spirits of those who would otherwise be stuck at home.

“It also provided the ideal opportunity to thank Susan for all her hard work in making BeConnected such a success.”


Pictured at the party are (left to right): Kenneth Bowe; Project Worker, Susan Cooke; SARH Chief Executive Karen Armitage; singer Holly Reynolds and Christine Bowe.


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