Plea for residents to help elderly neighbours if snow falls heavily in Harrogate

The Harrogate Easier Living Project (HELP) is encouraging residents to help others as much as possible if snow does fall heavily in Harrogate.
The Harrogate Easier Living Project (HELP) is encouraging residents to help others as much as possible if snow does fall heavily in Harrogate.

With yellow and amber weather warnings remaining in place for snow this week, a Harrogate charity has urged residents to help elderly neighbours who could be left feeling more isolated or trapped in their homes.

The Harrogate Easier Living Project (HELP) gives district-wide support to help older people live independently, and Project Development Worker Lizzie Hughes said it's especially important during these cold snaps to make sure that no one is left feeling alone in their home - unable to buy food, make appointments, or see friends.

Lizzie said: "We say throughout the year that it's really important to keep an eye on your neighbours, family friends, and people who are perhaps a little bit more vulnerable. And in winter, it's really important to do that, particularly thinking of those who are more rurally isolated.

"For us the weather can be a bit of an inconvenience being fully mobile, but it can stop some people from doing anything. It's about taking a bit of time to think about how the weather might be affecting family members, elderly neighbours, and more vulnerable people."

Lizzie said it's also about helping older people to "stay connected", and not letting the snow make them feel as though their world is shrinking.

The charity has a team of dedicated volunteer drivers who help older people to attend appointments and make other essential trips - regardless of the weather, as well as social outings.

Lizzie said: "We do anything we can do to prevent the worry and help people feel a bit more confident in getting about in this weather, or helping them if they don't want to go out in it. We have a great team of volunteers who can help."

To find out more about volunteering for HELP, and becoming a volunteer driver, visit their website: https://www.helpharrogate.org.uk/