A new start for Het Schakelpunt

Thanks to the efforts of organizations like care provider Florence, Zebra (an organization providing broad social support in three districts of The Hague) and the housing corporation Staedion as well as the A&W Community Association and a dedicated group of ouderenwerk (help the aged) volunteers, as of 1 September Het Schakelpunt will open againfive mornings a week for all elderly residents living in the Archipel and Willemspark.

The core group of volunteers from Het Schakelpunt (a social meeting point for the elderly) deplored how the elderly residents, through no fault of their own, were suddenly isolated from one another when it closed at the end of 2009. The only option for social contact was the Klokhuis Community Centre several streets away: an impossible distance for some residents.

However, since last September thanks to the dedication of the volunteers the elderly living in the Borneoflat complex (where Het Schakelpunt Care Centre was/is located) have been able to meet in the living room of the concierge at Flat 5. Everyone is most grateful to Staedion for making this possible but demand exceeded supply: the living room could not accommodate all those who wanted to come along for a cup of coffee and a chat.

The new arrangements now mean all elderly residents living in the neighbourhood can join the coffee morning in suitably sized accommodation. Should there be sufficient interest, a meal will be served once or twice a week for €6 (the same price as the evening meal served in the Klokhuis Community Centre on Tuesday evenings). The “armchair gymnastics” sessions that also take place on Tuesdays at the Centre between 11.00 and 12.00 will return to Het Schakelpunt.

Again if the demand is there, other activities such as fashion shows or the sale of shoes or theme afternoons can be organized during the afternoons.

The dedicated group of volunteers would welcome reinforcements with open arms. So if you would like to give something back to the community get in touch with Else Ponsen  at 070 350 57 38 or else@archipelwillemspark.nl . Also contact Else if you would like to join the coffee mornings. For other enquiries contact Matthias Wenzel of Zebra at 070 424 80 00 or Ruud Klein of the A&W Residents Association at 070 350 35 11 or ruud@ archipelwillemspark.nl

Summarised translation of article ‘Een nieuwe leven voor Het Schakelpunt’
A&W Community Newspaper June 2010

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