This tricycle will “rekindle the vacation of the elderly”

There is no age to seek adventure! This the Little Brothers of the Poor understood well. For example, the association, which helps isolated elderly people, offers ‘discovery stays’ all year round in its 13 holiday homes spread all over France. There, the beneficiaries can indulge in many activities to reconnect with life in society and the pleasure of life. Soon, thanks to the scooters, they will also be able to rediscover the thrills of a bike ride! explanation.

In France, isolation affects more than 2 million people, according to the barometer “Loneliness and isolation”, conducted by Les Petits Frères des Pauvres in 2021. A booming figure since it has increased by 122% compared to 2017. To come to the rescue of these people who are isolated from their family and friends, the organization carries out many actions. Amongst them, leisure accommodations are organized in the holiday homes of the association.

In Achy, near Beauvais (Oise), there is a beautiful brick castle. All around, a garden and a forest offer a beautiful green environment. A noticeable bubble of nature for people welcomed by the association of the Little Brothers of the Poor. “The problem is that today’s residents need to be independent enough to walk in the park in order to take full advantage of it”Françoise Pougnet, director of the holiday division of the Association for the Management of Establishments of the Little Brothers of the Poor, testifies. If they can also opt for car rides to discover the surrounding villages, with this scooter project the association should have an intermediate, “a way of offering” a nice little walk to the people received »

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Scooters: bicycles suitable for the elderly

The idea of ​​the director of the holiday department of the association was inspired by the initiative of a nursing home in the north of France. Thanks to crowdfunding, the establishment had obtained a scooter to take people in wheelchairs. This is exactly the project carried out by the Little Brothers of the Poor who understand break the loneliness of seniors by letting them taste freedom with an adapted bicycle

This electrically assisted bicycle is preceded at the front by a platform to which a wheelchair is attached. A fairly heavy but very safe boat according to the director. Flashing helmet and safety harness are in fact provided to ensure: safe walks for old people. A powerful battery also allows the volunteer to take long walks without getting exhausted. But this freedom comes with a price: 12,000 euros for a model assembled in Germany or the Netherlands.

The association has already won 10,000 euros in subsidies to finance the vehicle. He only has to collect the remaining 2,000 euros through a crowdfunding campaign. “It’s a good way for donors to know where their money is going,” adds Françoise Pougnet. From this summer, she hopes to be able to offer the residents of Château d’Achy bicycle tours. And later equip other holiday homes…

Photo: Shutterstock

Found the taste of freedom

“Very often these people have difficulty walking, so that they cannot fully enjoy the park of the castle or the surrounding area”testifies François Pougnet who ensures that the ride “nose in the wind” on a bicycle, “It’s a feeling they haven’t experienced in a long time. It brings back the taste for life and it evokes many memories… Soft gym, guided tours, socio-aesthetic activities… In the holiday homes managed by the Little Brothers of the Poor, the activities offered are often done in groups. However, the director recalls, the people received are used to isolation. It is therefore sometimes difficult for them to renew social ties.

“The great thing about this scooter is that these trips are a small project for two”Françoise Pougnet specifies who finds this gait “more intimate than the big bus trips” and that can be organized more spontaneously. Finally, “Betting on these inter-individual activities is a good way to make them rediscover the taste for social life”, the director assures. futures, with the purchase of the scooter bike, more than 500 seniors can enjoy a unique moment of escape† A way of “Reviving the Holidays”† Because “we shouldn’t believe… even the elderly have a thirst for discovery. They don’t necessarily want to sit by the fireplace and listen to Tino Rossi! †Françoise concludes with humor.

Do you want to contribute to break the isolation of the elderly † You can provide a unique moment of escape to our seniors by helping the Little Brothers of the Poor to buy a tricycle through their crowdfunding campaign

Other local projects are also waiting for the support of the citizens: renovation of the home of an elderly woman in a precarious situationorganization of a gastronomic meal for seniors who no longer go out… Find all the projects of the Little Brothers of the Poor on their crowdfunding platform

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