Golden Games partnership shortlisted for Scottish Health Award

An Aberdeen team has been announced as a finalist at the Scottish Health Awards 2015.

Aberdeen Golden Games - Aberdeen City Health and Social Care Partnership - has been shortlisted for the Healthier Lifestyle Award.

Aberdeen City Council leads the partnership which includes Sport Aberdeen, Aberdeen Sports Village, NHS Grampian and Aberdeen Football Club Community Trust.

The team was developed to deliver the Golden Games, a programme of sporting activities suitable for people over 65 living in Aberdeen.

The first ever Golden Games were held in 2011in a bid to encourage older people to remain active and to address the major health inequalities associated with ageing.

The Games have grown year on year and in June 2015, over 425 people aged over 65 took part – a 531% increase in participants compared to the first Golden Games in 2011. The programme of events included over 70 different activities and was held over a five day period. Activities to suit all ages and abilities were organised, including seated exercise classes and wall climbing, allowing a range of elderly people to take part.

Since being established the Golden Games have not only given older people the opportunity to engage in physical activity, but have also provided them with a chance to meet other older people, reducing the risk of social isolation often associated with the elderly.

All nominees fought off stiff competition from across the country to secure their place at this year's glittering award ceremony in November.

Aberdeen City Council Councillor Lesley Dunbar said: "I am delighted to hear that the Golden Games team has been shortlisted for a national health award. The Games were created by Aberdeen City Council in 2011 however thanks to the continued commitment of the partner organisations that the Games have gone from strength to strength.

"By working together the partnership has ensured that an action-packed programme of activities from gentle exercises and healthy walks to active pursuits like snowboarding or rock climbing offer everyone 65 years of age of all abilities the chance to have a go at something they have never tried before or take part in something that they already enjoy while meeting new people and making new friends; the Games promote healthy physical and mental wellbeing."

Paula Bisset, Active Ageing Development Officer, Sport Aberdeen said: "Sport Aberdeen said: We are delighted to be one of the Partners supporting older adults throughout Aberdeen to become more active and try new activities by attending the Golden Games. The Games have become a key part of spreading the message that physical activity is not only an important part of growing older but is great fun too. With such a wide range of activities there really is something for everyone."

Graham Morrison, Events Manager, Aberdeen Sports Village said: "It is fantastic to see the Golden Games nominated for this award, and is a great testimony of the hard work from all the Golden Games partners. We are delighted to be involved in this great initiative and look forward to seeing the Golden Games develop further year on year, ensuring that we get more people active as well as offer additional opportunities to those who are already active."

Ally Prockter, Chief Executive Officer, Aberdeen Football Club Community Trust said:"The Golden Games continues to go from strength to strength and demonstrates superbly exactly what can be achieved through a partnership where everybody involved is pulling in the same direction and looking to secure the same outcomes. This shortlisting is worthy recognition for a great deal of hard work by numerous people."

Susan Webb, NHS Grampian Acting Director of Public Health, said: "We are delighted with the selection of this excellent example of teamwork among organisations in Aberdeen for the lasting benefit of older people in the city. The Golden Games provide a truly inspiring range of activities and create valuable and highly enjoyable opportunities to improve physical and mental health and wellbeing.

"The event also creates exciting ways for people to make new friends and socialise – an important factor in wellbeing. The team behind this very special festival really give their all to make it a success and their dedication is greatly appreciated by Golden Games participants."

Every year, the Scottish Health Awards recognise and reward the dedicated NHS staff, support workers, volunteers and specialist teams who go the extra mile to provide outstanding patient care.

There are 16 award categories in total, including the Nurse Award, the Volunteers Award, and the renowned Doctor Award. A specially selected panel of judges has selected finalists in every category.

The finalists will be invited to attend an awards ceremony on the 4 November 2015 at the Corn Exchange in Edinburgh, where the winners will be announced.

To view the full list of finalists, or for more information, please visit www.scottishhealthawards.com

The Scottish Health Awards 2015 is managed by the Scottish Government and the Daily Record.