Bath College students will be part of an exciting new project launched this week.
Slow Shopping aims to make doing the weekly shop easier for older people, those living with dementia, or anyone who might need a bit of extra time to complete their shopping.
Students from the Bath College Care Academy and staff from Waitrose, Bath, are joining together to kick-start the city’s first Slow Shopping project, with the help of funding from the St John’s Foundation.
The new Slow Shopping project will deliver training to health and social care students from the Bath College Care Academy and Waitrose staff.
They will be on hand to assist shoppers who may require extra time or support to complete their shop. During Slow Shopping sessions, background noise will be limited to create a calm atmosphere in store.
The first Slow Shopping session starts on January 23rd. Slow Shopping sessions will run at Waitrose, on Northgate Street, every Tuesday between 10am and 12 noon.
Founder Katherine Vero set up Slow Shopping after her mother was diagnosed with dementia.
Inspired by her mother’s experience of visiting shops, Slow Shopping works with retailers, training providers and others to advocate a safe environment for those who need to take more time shopping.
Katherine said: “I am delighted to be working with such a wonderful team of people to deliver Slow Shopping to the community in Bath.
“The commitment and enthusiasm shown by all the partners is heartening and I feel sure that the quality of the support that they can offer to the customers in Waitrose will be both sensitive and effective.
“Shopping is such an ordinary activity that it can be underestimated. It has so many benefits especially for those who live with visible, invisible, intellectual or cognitive disability and their carers and families.
“A trip to the shops can be a social activity, it can help maintain independence and health and it is a physical exercise involving personal choice.
“I want to encourage people who may feel less confident or fearful to come shopping and enjoy the experience, knowing they can get help if they need it.”
Bath’s first Slow Shopping project was launched at Bath College on Tuesday January 16th following the first training session for Waitrose staff and Bath College Care Academy students.
Sally Wilson, Care Academy Coordinator at Bath College, said: “We’re excited to be working in collaboration to help shape this ground-breaking programme within the local community supporting peoples’ health and wellbeing.
“Students will learn so much from working in partnership in this way. They will develop a greater awareness of some of the barriers that those experiencing dementia (and other additional needs) may face when shopping, and the different ways they can support them.
“All of this ties in with the main aim of The Bath College Care Academy: to enhance students’ employability skills by working with partners to provide a wide range of work experience opportunities within the health and social care sector.”