23 June 2021

Helping older adults regain movement and find companionship 

The Sporting Memories KITbag project has received financial support of £25,000 from the Scottish Government, for the distribution of 500 additional packages to individuals referred by over thirty community organisations – from Orkney to the Borders, from Aberdeenshire to Argyll and Bute.  

Aimed at older adults who are most at risk from reduced physical activity and loneliness, the KITbag project provides exercise equipment, a DVD, reminiscence resources and a personal log-book direct to people’s homes. Combined with other Sporting Memories activities, it provides opportunities for companionship and support with exercising both at home and in groups. Find out more about the Sporting Memories KITbag or make an enquiry.

Maree Todd, Minister for Public Health, Women’s Health and Sport, says: “I am delighted that we have been able to fund the distribution of a further 500 KITbags to individuals and organisations across Scotland.  

“The KITbag is a great resource to support and encourage older people with long term issues and reduced mobility to help them regain their confidence and enjoy being physically active. The KITbags have a role to play in supporting older people to regain strength and flexibility which is so important.  

“The pandemic has shone a light on increased loneliness and its impact on older people. Through supporting the distribution of the KITbag we hope to connect many more people so they may find friendship and support.” 

KITbag participant Pete says [pictured right]: “Having the KITbag has encouraged me to do more exercise and it has increased my activity. I definitely do more than now than I used to do and look forward to exercising with the rest of the group at our weekly Zoom." 

KITbag participant Aneurin says: "During lockdown I have been spending most of the day sitting down which has given me a stiff back. Since receiving the KITbag I have been doing exercises daily and I am much more mobile. I even went outside for a short walk. I enjoy our weekly telephone circle as it has given me encouragement to keep going and the opportunity to chat to new people."  

Chris Wilkins, Sporting Memories Co-Founder, says: “Since the start of the pandemic we have been working on our own longer-term solutions to increased immobility and loneliness, just like the health sector has been working on COVID treatments and vaccines. The Scottish Government’s support for an additional 500 Sporting Memories KITbags means we are reaching many more older adults, and providing them with long-term opportunities to find regular companionship. Our ambition is to bring the KITbag and our services to everyone across Scotland who will benefit, and to support this through establishing additional Sporting Memories Clubs in new areas and the provision of more volunteering and training opportunities based around the KITbag project. 

We thank also thank our funders ScottishPower Foundation who allowed us to get this fully evaluated project off the ground, along with Spirit of 2012 and Corra Foundation.” 

Whether you are an organisation interested in purchasing porting Memories KITbags, or an individual who would like to find out more, visit our KITbag page, where you will find more information and a film.