Move Mates Stories: Barbara and Sarah

Barbara has been walking with Sarah since early 2023. She has been building up her confidence walking again after being housebound.

Barbara realised that she had become housebound after being ill, and wanted to do something to get her out of the house

Barbara had become housebound after a period of illness and realised she needed support to get moving. A chat with her GP was the first step. Then a physiotherapist from Community Care mentioned Move Mates to her. The walking buddy idea fitted the bill perfectly for Barbara and she got in touch with us. 
Barbara was keen to build up her confidence in getting out of the house, and increase her physical strength. Both of these had taken a dip after her time being housebound and she hadn’t been able to visit nearby Rowntree Park for some months.

 Each week, Sarah meets Barbara at her door and they head to the park. It’s quite a steep slope to get up and down, so they usually take it slowly and have a couple of rest breaks. They often chat to the people they see on their walks, and Barbara feels that this is an aspect of being outside she had forgotten about when she was housebound. The conversations in passing have helped to remind her of a sense of worth, that life is still going on somewhere, as well as broadening her horizons and rediscovering her interests. She describes it as ‘making the sun shine again’. 

Although Barbara suffered a small setback with a fall recently, she hasn’t given up her commitment to getting moving. She feels that with her Move Mate walks firmly in place, it makes it easier to get back to working on her fitness levels.

“It’s been absolutely wonderful for me – not only the walking but the social side and conversations about things outside the home.

Barbara, participant

Woman with sticks pictured at entrance to Rowntree Park
Barbara, at the entrance to Rowntree park, on one of her earlier Move Mates walks
Barbara on a bench with Ruby the dog
Ruby, Barbara's dog, occasionally accompanies them on a walk

 “For such a simple idea the benefits are very wide-ranging – new places, new people, conversations and exploring different places.”

Barbara, participant

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