Residents at a care village catering for Manchester’s Jewish population are going for pedal power rather than jet power to blow away the cobwebs for the New Year by embarking on a virtual sponsored cycle to Israel to raise funds for digital equipment for the village’s households.
Sixteen residents at Belong Morris Feinmann village in Didsbury, all of them over the age of 85, are taking part in the challenge. The team will cycle in relays, using state-of-the-art SilverFit exercise equipment in the village’s on-site gym, which is designed for use by older people and encourages greater exercise by making it more fun and engaging. A cycling machine connected to a giant screen, displaying scenery that moves according to the speed at which the participants are cycling, will be used to simulate road conditions for the plucky riders participating.
Belong is one of the first operators in the care sector to adopt SilverFit equipment at its villages throughout the North West and its use for the sponsored cycle ride is to encourage an active start to the New Year and to raise funds to purchase an Amazon Alexa digital assistant for each of the village’s households, to keep residents engaged with new technology.
The Belong senior cyclists will ‘hit the road’ for a total of 12 hours, which is believed to be the time it would take by car and plane to travel from the Didsbury village to Tel Aviv and back, and they are being sponsored by visitors and families of residents.
Visitors to the Belong village can make a donation at reception, and follow a map charting the residents’ progress. A JustGiving webpage has also been set up allowing people to make donations online and can be found at: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/belongmorrisfeinmann
Angela Luckett, experience coordinator at Belong Morris Feinmann, said: “The aim of the initiative was to start the New Year as we mean to go on health-wise and encourage going to the gym. The residents have really got behind the project and are queuing up to participate. Whatever the amount of funds raised, this is a great exercise…literally, and the sponsorship to enable investment in new technology is an added bonus.”