102017Aug

My mature matters forums

The weather may not reflect it, but summer is in full swing and I have been out and about in the constituency in the past week, meeting constituents, visiting businesses and holding an increased number of surgeries.

The highlight of my week was undoubtedly the ‘Mature Matters’ forum in Bradford on Avon. With a focus on older constituents, we explored a large range of issues, from the lack of seating in shops, issues with the quality of local pavements, through to the positioning of a phone mast in the town.

Working in conjunction with the local Seniors Forum, together we have plans to work on tackling access issues, dealing with loneliness and isolation and running future forums to better capture and identify the needs of the older community.

Adult care was one of the key topics of conversation in the forum and I have arranged in the coming week to spend time shadowing a care worker for a day, learning more about the challenges faced in this sector and the improvements which we can make to care provision at the national level.

I also had the pleasure of visiting the new development site of the Wiltshire Air Ambulance this week, which is moving to Semington, a charity which I know has touched so many lives across the county.

I was very impressed with the innovation being applied and the enthusiasm and dedication shown by all members of staff.

I feel immensely privileged to have, soon to be based in my constituency, a charity which provides such essential support and adds such value to the whole of Wiltshire.

The new site once complete will provide a community hub and space, training in first aid and support to local schools and colleges.

With such a reliance on donations and the volunteer network, money is still being sought to complete the new site and I will be looking at ways I am able to support it in the next few months.

On the back of the success of the ‘Mature Matters’ forum, I will be holding additional ones in both Chippenham, Corsham and in Melksham, in the coming weeks.

If you would like to attend, or would like to book some time to see me in one of my surgeries, please email michelle.donelan.mp@parliament.uk or call my office on 01249 704465. I love to attend local events so please do let me know of any you have planned and I will do my best to attend.

Also published online at The Gazette & Herald.