“I have always been a housewife looking after my children” said Maryam, who is in her 60s and lost her husband recently. “I struggle with coping without him, as he used to do everything.”
A friend of Maryam’s daughter met Farrah, our transformational coach for the Age of Opportunity Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic project at a library in Pendle and passed on Farrah’s details. The project aims to help people 50 or older get into work. Farrah is multi-lingual and speaks Punjabi and Urdu.
Maryam suffers with several physical ailments and twinned with not knowing much English, means she had found it very challenging to get out. She explained to Farrah, who communicated with her in Punjabi: “As I’ve been indoors for a long time – my confidence levels and motivation are low.”
Through the coaching with Farrah that the project offers, Maryam:
- is receiving support to develop her IT and digital skills;
- has got to know some of the services in her local area which she can access and feel safe doing so;
- has joined a walking club; and
- is building confidence in going out, improving her wellbeing and health and learning to Speak English.
“The project has opened up opportunity for me,” said Maryam. “As a minority, I feel there is no service for us and it is good to know there is support out there for our community.”
“This has changed my mind set to be able to cope with my problems and that anyone over the age of 50 are not ignored. It has restored my faith that services can be accessed – which I didn’t know about or was afraid to ask about.”
To find out more about this transformational service, please email Maira Butt, Lancashire Mind's Project Lead for Adult Services or call her on 07964 058027.