Did you know the West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS) has a Safe and Well programme so older people not only have a fire safety visit but are also given help and support for social isolation if needed as well? No? then read on. Jessica Duffy Learning Facilitator – Time to Shine and Leeds Older People’s Forum can tell us more.
“Firefighters spend much of their time visiting people in their homes, discussing fire safety and offering advice to eliminate or reduce the risk of a fire happening in their home. They discuss a practical fire escape plan to make sure that if the worst does happen, the occupants can escape safely with their families. But now they are involved in safe and well visits which means they also check on other factors that can impact a person’s safety and wellbeing at home.
Safe and Well visits now look at crime prevention, falls prevention, cold homes, smoking cessation and social isolation.
All West Yorkshire firefighters have now been trained to spot signs of social isolation and loneliness. In Leeds if they find people in real need they refer them to AGE UK Leeds’ SWIFt project, who either work with them or refer to a local Neighbourhood Network or other appropriate organisation.”
Jessica added “We are now planning, with the help of the Leeds Prevention Officer, to train organisations who work with older people and who might get to know a little about their circumstances, to be able to identify when someone is at increased risk from fire so they can request a Safe and Well visit. The organisations will also be able to get to know their local fire station crew (called ‘Watches’), so that when they meet someone who would clearly benefit from a bit of help or friendship but who doesn’t want a formal referral the crew can give them information about local organisations and activities.
Jack Bennett (of WYFRS) or one of their Leeds Prevention Team will attend, explain to us all how Safe and well visits now work (forget ‘it’s just smoke alarms’), how they are targeted at those most at risk and how those risk factors interact.
You can book your free place at this free information event on Wed, January 29, 2020 10:00 am – 11:30 am at Horsforth Central Methodist Hall (opposite the library) here
It’s OK for more than one member of staff to attend if appropriate. If you can’t find a date that suits you, or you would like to have a meeting nearer to you and can offer a space, please contact me and we will arrange something more suitable.”
You can also enquire about a Safe and Well visit here and get a free smoke alarm fitted.