ELDERLY people are at the centre of attention for one young woman this winter who has created a community group to help Oxford’s older residents.

Suzi Braithwaite, a 20-year-old student from Oxford Brookes University, wants to reach out to those who find it difficult to get groceries during the icy season.

She has called the group OxSNOW and is looking forward to getting it started once she has found volunteers to help out.

The business and marketing management student came up with the idea after seeing an advert on TV showing a young man getting supplies for an elderly man who couldn’t leave his house because of the snow.

She said: “This highlighted to me the challenges the snow and frost bring to the elderly and vulnerable including the restriction on daily tasks. With elderly grandparents myself I have witnessed first-hand the reliability that they have on my mum when the snow comes. Just to get essential supplies such as bread and milk is huge.”

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Miss Braithwaite is launching OxSNOW this winter as she believes there are no other services like it that are currently available in Oxford.

She said: “OxSNOW will really benefit the Oxford community for both volunteers and the elderly. I am hoping to continuously grow the network to become a well-known organisation in the city throughout the winter months, and to eliminate the fear of venturing into treacherous conditions which can easily increase the risk of falls and other injuries.”

She added: “It will also enable the elderly to reduce their loneliness and help them to interact with people which is a key social concern.”

Security checks will be made on the volunteers before pairing them with a nearby member of the Oxford community who needs help.

When the paired individual requires their help, they can call their assigned volunteer asking them to get some supplies or groceries and bring them to their house with a form of ID, to provide assurance for the elderly resident that they are their volunteer.

Miss Braithwaite hopes that people will be assigned to two or three volunteers.

Those who would like to sign up can do so through their website www.oxsnow.co.uk or can call their number on 07375056248 to register their details.

Volunteers who would like to sign up to can email hello@oxsnow.co.uk with information about themselves and and why they want to join the team.