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Wetherby charity hails big increase in older people contact as services expand

A Wetherby charity is heralding a big increase in interactions with older people as it continues to expand its work across the district.

Wetherby charity hails a big increase in older people contact as it continues to expand its work

Wetherby in Support of the Elderly (WiSE) had more than 18,000 interactions with older people in 2023- a 50 per cent increase on the year before.


The figure coincides with an expansion of the charity’s work during the last 12 months- including a new memory café which received almost 400 visits from those living with dementia and their carers.


At least 9,500 people visited the popular WiSE Owl Café, whilst just under 5,000 attended the charity’s packed activities programme- from exercise to crafts. Hundreds more attended special celebration events.


WiSE’s volunteer driver Transport Scheme provided more than 700 journeys- including local trips for shopping, WiSE activities and GP appointments- whilst 1,250 pieces of post were sent to older people as part of its popular ‘Send a Smile’ scheme.

Mark Dobson, Chief Operating Officer at WiSE, said: “We know there is a huge and growing demand for our services and these figures confirm that. The last 12 months were big for us as we expanded our events programme into new areas and re-established our much needed memory café.”

A team of more than 120 volunteers provided a massive 4775 hours of their own time to support the charity’s activities.

“To have had so many more interactions with older people in our communities this year is down to the incredible work of our much-loved army of volunteers and small but dedicated team of paid staff,” said Mark.


Wetherby in Support of the Elderly (WiSE) is a registered charity organisation part funded by Leeds City Council (LCC).  Its aim is to improve quality of life for the over 60s by providing community based activities, information, help and support. For more information, or to donate, visit 

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