Climate Change & International Day of Older Persons 2021

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Climate Change & International Day of Older Persons 2021

1st October marks the United Nation's International Day of Older Persons (IDOP). With the UN Climate Change Conference taking place in Glasgow this year, Manchester, along with the Greater Manchester Ageing Hub (members of the UK Network of Age Friendly Cities and Communities) has agreed to make Climate Change the focus of this year's IDOP.

Inadequately preparing to effectively mitigate the impacts of climate change could significantly impact on healthy ageing.

Manchester City Council Communications Team have been working with members of the Age Friendly Manchester Older People's Board and Assembly to create a climate change campaign which challenges the myths that older people are responsible for climate change, and aren't concerned about the issue.

Our colleagues at the Greater Manchester Ageing Hub will be marking IDOP with the campaign Older and Greener, focussing on tackling the climate emergency together in Greater Manchester #OlderandGreener #IDOP2021.

The voice of older people in the climate debate is something that hasn’t been emphasised by policy makers. Yet as world populations age, it will be essential to galvanise action on climate change from people of all generations. We know that society is ageing, and that the effects of climate change bring risk to an ageing population.

Ahead of International Day of Older Persons next Friday, we’d like to reflect on some of the many environmental projects we’re involved in…

Men’s Sheds & Garden Sheds

Exposure to green space can have a positive effect on both physical and mental health. Studies have shown that gardening can reduce depression and anxiety, and local green space has been linked to improved mental health and wellbeing. For older people, gardening can be a useful source of physical activity, while supporting independence and reducing loneliness. Living in areas with green spaces is associated with less income-related health inequality, weakening the effect of deprivation on health. Urban green spaces can contribute to social cohesion, and the quality and maintenance of green spaces is important to make them appealing.

An example of one of our Men’s Sheds projects is the Tree of Life Centre in Wythenshawe. Learn more about it here.

You can find more information about one of our Garden Shed projects here.

Debdale Diggers Gardening Club

This project was started in 2012 to give people the chance to enjoy a gardening experience whilst learning new skills and helping out in the park. Originally known as The Volunteer Gardening Project, the group is now run by Olwyn from Debdale Bowling and Social Club.

Work is varied according to the season and people’s interests and capabilities. It could involve tidying up a flower bed, planting some new plants, pruning shrubs, or cutting the grass verges. Friends of the park provide equipment including two new lawn mowers, a tractor mower, and strimmer.

Anyone is welcome to join in for however long they can and whenever is convenient for them.

Every little helps! Just turn up and we’ll help you get started!

Learn more about the group and how to get involved here.

Gardening Group at No.93 (Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust Wellbeing Centre)

Join in every Tuesday from 11am until 1pm. This weekly gardening group is for all abilities, helping to achieve a community space for everyone to use and enjoy. This group is great to learn from each other and come together to socialise around an activity that is great for your health and wellbeing. Contact to get involved!

Broad Oak Court Gardening Project

Gardening kits were given out to residents during the COVID-19 pandemic to encourage more residents to get involved with a positive activity to get them outdoors. All equipment was provided so residents were able to manage the garden themselves. You can find out more here.

Philips Park Orchard

This is a gardening project which supports mental wellbeing in the community of Ancoats, Bradford and Clayton by offering a social proscribing scheme. Participants learn how to grow vegetables from seeds and how they can be harvested and cooked to make delicious seasonal meals. Learn more about it here.

Age Friendly Walkabouts

The buzz Manchester Age Friendly team have organised a number of walkabouts developed to support older residents who may feel excluded or isolated within their neighbourhood. More recently they have been perfect to help people get out and about and reconnect with their neighbourhoods again as lockdowns started to be lifted.

Residents who took part in the walks came away with more knowledge about their local area and services available to them.

“It was great to get out with other people and to share what we knew about the area where we all live, it has helped me find out about things I hadn’t heard of before. It has also helped me learn about the local history as I moved to this area after retirement.”

“I’ve lived here for 10 years now and never considered going to Victoria Baths. I’m really glad we did!”

Wonder Walks

Wonder Walks are gentle, mindful walk for those living in the Manchester postcode areas M22 or M23.

Guided walks provide time to relax and connect with nature. The walks are about slowing doing and noticing your surroundings, whilst getting your body moving at the same time. If you’d like to get involved please email

This is just a snapshot of some the environmental work we’ve recently been involved in. Continue to explore this website to discover even more ways we’ve been helping the environment and Manchester’s communities to stay healthy!

Tweet us @buzzmanc and let us know what you’re getting up to for International Day of Older Persons on 1st October 2021! Don’t forget to use the hashtags #OlderandGreener and #IDOP2021

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