This week’s column is written by Cllr Steve Mackay, Deputy Mayor of Worcester
As Deputy, the engagements I have are considerably less than those of the Mayor. However reflecting on this past year, I was privileged to attend numerous engaging events, where I represented the City. One of my most recent invitations was to attend a lunchtime café session where I saw how those suffering from dementia and their carers may be assisted. By using suitcases containing museum items from the 1940s,50s and 60s, memories were jogged and this brought about discussions that otherwise would never have taken place.
Aided by a professional story-teller who told a vivid tale of a journey, he incorporated actions and sounds with his audience, using musical instruments. While eventually there may be a cure for this condition, such inputs go some way to assisting those experiencing its effects.
One of my highlights from 2016 was starting the flotilla on the River Severn and taking Tea at the Guildhall with local residents who shared their 90th birthday last year with Her Majesty the Queen. It was a fantastic day, enriched by those who gave up their time to make it a superb occasion.
And the year continued with me attending Annual General Meetings of the Worcester Headway and Roots associations; civic services; prize giving days at Kings College and Tudor Academy and plays put on by young people in Worcester – all leading up to carol services at Christmas.
Deputising has allowed me to see how Worcester City and the whole county benefits from volunteers who assist those in circumstances less fortunate than others. I have been amazed at their commitment, but am reminded that the rewards are a two-way feature. If anyone considers that they have the time available and would wish to volunteer for any organisation, I can only suggest that both are likely to benefit.
I look forward to seeing what 2017 has to bring – but already our City’s new swimming pool has been opened and appears to be receiving fantastic accolades. Let’s hope Worcester continues in the same vein throughout the year.
Happy New Year to you all.