Step out your comfort zone and be pleasantly surprised

We are so delighted that Roar has been awarded Age Scotland’s Services for Older People’s Charity of the year 2018! This award belongs to us all because collectively we are Roar – so congratulations everyone. What with awards and being on the telly, it’s been an exciting time. The launch of the Stay Mobile Stay Connected campaign has been so well received that the members of the film making group have been in high demand for interviews and other projects. The feedback from them is that they cannot believe how much they are enjoying themselves! They have something interesting to do, lots to talk about with family and most importantly they have made new friendships.


At one of the clubs, a member asked “how do you get picked to be part of these projects?” The answer is ‘Be open to something new and when we come to ask for names for a new project – say yes, I’d be interested.’ Easier said than done, I know. As both May and Elizabeth say in the films, they had no idea what to expect but everyone was so kind and they were never put in a situation of doing something they didn’t want to do. We will make sure you are safe, well fed and have great fun!


Some of the other project that some of our members have been involved in include being in a virtual reality film where they acted as tour guides round Coats Observatory, were ‘green screened’ into a film clip of the San Francisco earthquake of 1906 and took part in a Police Scotland bus driver training film for making bus travel safer for elderly passengers. The people involved just can’t wait for the films to be launched and all described feeling excited about doing something different and there being lots of laughter.


In the coming months we will be approached by organisations looking to involve older people in projects, focus groups, films and cultural opportunities. We often don’t know the details about days and times until the planning and funding comes together and we often have to fit with the slots they have available, and this can be a barrier for some people. However I would urge you to step out of your comfort zone! Put yourself forward to try something new and whatever that turns out to be I guarantee that you will be very pleased you did!

Nicola Hanssen


Volunteer Footcare Technicians

We need more Volunteer Footcare Technicians.

Many older people cannot cut their own toe nails and need to find an affordable service to help them. Long toenails can make it difficult to get shoes on, can cause pain when walking and increases the chances of having a fall. And for elderly people, falls have been shown to be as dangerous as smoking and heart disease.

“Roar Do Feet” is a basic footcare service for older people. We run sessions in various venues across Renfrewshire where we cut toe nails and carry out basic footcare. It’s also an opportunity to chat to people about how they are getting on.

There is a big demand for our Roar Do Feet service and we need volunteer footcare technicians to keep it running. Volunteers get training and support from Roar and an NHS Podiatrist – there is also a pathway to paid employment. We know feet aren’t for everyone but it’s an opportunity to do something wonderful for older people, that helps them get out, socialise and helps prevent falls.

If you want to volunteer please get in contact.

tel: 0141 889 7481



Anne Volunteer Footcare Technician

I’ve been volunteering for around 6 months. I do toenail cutting, comforting foot rubs and conversation. The training we get from the NHS Podiatrist is great. Some people don’t like feet but they’re not that bad . I started off as a dental assistant and now I’m doing feet so I’ve moved from the top to the bottom of the body.
I really enjoy it. Footcare seems like a small thing but it makes a huge difference to people’s lives. If the people can’t cut their toenails, it can lead to problems walking, which can result in back pain, decreased mobility and increased risk of falling and social isolation. So while it seems like a little thing it’s really life changing.


Cara Volunteer Footcare Technician

I had finished my marketing degree and while I was job hunting I contacted Roar to volunteer as a befriender. When I was shown what a huge difference I could make doing footcare, I decided to give it a go. If an older person can’t cut their toenails it can result in lots of complications. Their feet can become painful, they don’t move about, stop going out and they can become socially isolated. This service has even been shown to help prevent falls which can have a devastating impact on older people’s lives. It’s not something I thought I would ever do but it has actually been good and I’ve been doing it for 8 months now. Its lovely chatting to people, they really appreciate the service and when they leave they say they really feel the difference … not as sore.

The footcare training we get is great, it is from a NHS Podiatrist and they come back every so often to do top up training. I’m really well supported in the sessions and I can always ask questions.

The sessions are a good laugh, it’s a nice atmosphere, there are a few of us doing it in a room and the people I meet have great stories. It’s not for everyone but cutting toe nails can have a massive impact on people’s lives and it well worth doing.  Cara has recently taken up a full-time marketing post in London.

Roar are always looking for volunteers and if you want to do something wonderful for older people then you should get in contact.

If you want to volunteer please get in contact.

tel: 0141 889 7481


Roar’s Balance Challenge

 3. One legged wobble media campaign more

Roar’s Balance Challenge #wobblechallenge

One leg wobble

How long can you stand on one leg? With your eyes closed? Research shows that your ability could provide early warning of later health problems.

Roar’s #wobblechallenge social media campaign gained national recognition.

Try it & make sure you tag us on your Facebook video or Tweet using #wobblechallenge!

Take a stand! Challenge a friend! To see some of the groups and individuals who have already taken the challenge – check out Facebook or Twitter

Maintaining balance contributes to better movement and staying independent, particularly for older adults. It prevents accidents, while allowing people to move faster through possessing control of their weight and body. Vision directly affects balance together with the proprioceptive systems and inner ear, so closing your eyes while doing this exercise adds a challenge that improves your gait.  The one-legged wobble ultimately tests and conditions you by using a single leg to support the body, which makes balancing using both legs easier.

Useful links


  • Read the Age UK Home Safety Checker leaflet – Staying safe around the house to help you identify and resolve any possible risks, and help prevent accidents.
  • Try some of the Later Life Training physical activity and exercise resources
  • Find out what’s available in your area – Renfrewshire Leisure provide  a wide range of sports activities at 9 leisure facilities across Renfrewshire.
    Plus Active Communities deliver programmes and services for the whole community to become healthier and more active in a safe and enjoyable environment.
  • COMING SOON Falls Assistant is a an online resource that provides tailored advice to plan to reduce future risk of falls and fractures.
  • How long should you be able to stand on one leg? Read some more about the “Unipedal Stance Test“!
  • Oh, and if you want to read some of the research we mentioned earlier, read it herehere, here and here. But it would be much more fun to stand on one leg!

Positive steps

We use the Positive Steps* Falls Prevention Resource Pack within our clubs and befriending services. This includes giving people ideas about what to do if they have a fall.

This video highlights the one strategies we demonstrate to Roar members on how to get up after a fall.

*”Positive Steps” is an award winning innovative scheme developed by NHS Ayrshire & Arran and South Ayrshire Council.

“Positive Steps” helps through focused appropriate help and guidance to those people who need it most, boosting their confidence and raising awareness of potential hazards to be avoided. In addition, it offers others a chance to share their experiences of a fall, in turn helping them cope with what happened.”  Councillor Rita Miller, South Ayrshire Council

Kenny Aims High


Roar Connections for Life volunteer Kenny Brown attended Invest in Renfrewshire’s Aiming Higher Renfrewshire’s Employability Awards Event in the Normandy Hotel on Wednesday 15th June.

The event jointly arranged by Renfrewshire Council and Invest in Renfrewshire celebrated the enterprise, talent and commitment to excellence that characterise Renfrewshire’s businesses and their employees.

The event was opened by the Leader of Renfrewshire Council Councillor Mark Macmillan who said ‘this is a triumphant night for Renfrewshire.  We are here to celebrate outstanding success at an individual, business and regional level’

Host for the evening was BBC Television and Radio presenter Brian Burnett.

Kenny was nominated in the ‘CV Builder Adult’ category by Roar Volunteer Coordinator Anne Marie Cullen.  This category recognised those people whose volunteering roles have equipped them for the world of work and how volunteering has impacted on their personal development, skills and knowledge and how this can lead to employment.  In Kenny’s case his commitment to volunteering with Roar Connections for Life, his keenness to avail himself of the training on offer and the subsequent increase in his skills, ability and confidence lead him to be promoted to Bar Manager of Renfrew Bowling Club in January of this year.  We are also very lucky that Kenny continues to volunteer with Roar every Tuesday at our ‘Reels and Speils’ Project.


Kenny was delighted to be a chosen as a finalist for this award and received a certificate as one of two runners up.  He was happy to congratulate Ayodele Afolabi – volunteer with Engage Renfrewshire who won the award and fellow runner up Wilma Dean.

Well done Kenny and thanks to all who took part in and arranged such a spectacular event.