A retired army veteran from Litherland was so pleased with losing more than three stone in weight through the Feelgood Factory’s healthy living course he has become a vital volunteer within the centre.
Billy Almond, aged 80, explains: “The healthy weight course was brilliant. It was easy to follow. After I lost the weight I wanted to give something back so I returned to show new people on the course what can happen.”
But Billy ended up staying for a lot longer. He has taken part in the walking football group, took up yoga, joined the centre’s weekly walks and is now leading the Monday walk from Netherton’s Feelgood Factory, part of the Living Well Sefton partnership.
One of his favourite activities is helping out in the community garden which is behind the shops in Netherton’s Marian Square.
Here, along with other volunteers, he keeps the garden in shape, especially enjoying wheeling soil over to the raised beds which are designed to make it easier for older people to plant up.
“I like to see things improve and I get to meet different people,” says Billy, who struggled to find things to do after retiring from the army.
Philomena Zilinski, Healthy Living Services Manager at the Feelgood Factory, comments: “It has been a pleasure to help Billy. He is very motivated and takes on board the opportunities offered to him.
“I have seen him change from being an overweight and inactive person at a loss what to do with his days, to a slim, healthy walk leader, always willing to help others and an inspiration to his peers.”
Karen Nolan, Living Well Sefton programme manager, says: “There are lots of opportunities to improve your wellbeing across the Living Well Sefton partnership and Billy proves you are never too old to get involved!”
To find out how Living Well Sefton and its partners, including the Feelgood Factory, can support you, visit www.livingwellsefton.org.uk or ring 0300 323 0181.
Please note the service will be back in the New Year, ready to offer the support you need.