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New era for Breckland's Silver Social



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After four years of delivering its popular Silver Social Project, Breckland Council has commissioned Creative Arts East to take over the running of the successful arts programme aimed at older people.

Silver Social is an ambitious programme of daytime events aimed at older people, in community venues across Breckland.

This has included Swaffham and its surrounding villages, where a popular performer was cabaret artist Kate Dimbleby with her Sing Your Song workshop, prior to the pandemic.

After the success of Breckland Council’s Silver Social programme, a range of activities will make a return from next month - including ‘Sing Your Song’ workshops held by Kate Dimbleby. Picture: Kate Dimbleby.. (56804533)
After the success of Breckland Council’s Silver Social programme, a range of activities will make a return from next month - including ‘Sing Your Song’ workshops held by Kate Dimbleby. Picture: Kate Dimbleby.. (56804533)

To ensure the long-term future of Silver Social, Breckland Council has partnered with Creative Arts East, a Norfolk-based charity with expertise in using the transformative power of the arts to fight rural and social isolation.

Creative Arts East have delivered the project since April and residents are offered the same high-quality arts based activities, friendly welcome and complimentary tea and biscuits!

Alison Webb, Breckland Council’s executive member for Housing, Health and Communities, said: “We’re delighted by this new approach as our communities will benefit from the resources and expertise of Creative Arts East, and our Silver Social programme can go from strength to strength.

"We’ve been delivering Silver Social’s high-quality arts events and performances since 2017, and directly funding the programme since 2020 as part of our £1m Inspiring Communities programme.

"It’s an innovative programme that is a key part of our efforts to help people tackle social isolation and loneliness.

"We’ve been working with Creative Arts East for ten years and they’ve already been involved in the success of Silver Social – so we have every confidence that the future is even brighter for this outstanding scheme.”

Natalie Jode, executive director, Creative Arts East said: “Here at Creative Arts East we’re really excited to be taking over the delivery of Silver Social, working with Breckland Council to ensure its continued success, reaching those older rural residents that can most benefit from great quality creative and cultural experiences to increase wellbeing, decrease loneliness and provide social connections.

"As part of our commitment to arts for health, Breckland Council and Creative Arts East will lead the way in creating new social prescribing pathways to culture, initially for older people across the district, where Silver Social will be at the heart of that offer.”

When Silver Social participants were surveyed, 96% agreed Silver Social has encouraged them to try new activities, 77% agreed Silver Social has helped them become more active, and 73% said they feel more part of their community thanks to Silver Social.

The future of Silver Social will see it working in tandem with Our Day Out, a unique dementia-friendly programme of creative arts for rurally isolated older people in Norfolk. Combining the two programmes will enable Creative Arts East to use their expertise to tailor both more closely to the needs of Breckland residents and expand the provision even further.

Find out more about Silver Social at www.thesilversocial.com



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