Marta and Sheila
How Marta and Sheila are supporting their local area this Autumn
October 17, 2022
This Autumn GoodGym is aiming to support 2,000 older people and community organisations through the cost of living crisis with the #PowerTheGood campaign. Here we speak to two people who have sprinted ahead on the good deeds leaderboard and are using GoodGym to #PowerTheGood where they live.
MARTA CAMPOS - GOODGYM GREENWICH
Marta joined GoodGym in March 2017 and has just hit the incredible milestone of 500 good deeds. She had initially intended to attend GoodGym Lewisham after an invite from a friend but train issues on the night messed with her plans and she ended up attending Greenwich a few days later. She been a regular ever since.
Marta says she is now “addicted to missions” after starting them during the pandemic. She said “At the time missions were a very welcome break from being stuck at home, they gave me a reason to get outside and do something useful”
Marta regularly does missions for an older person who lives close by. “I do his shopping and go to the chemist” she says. “He has become a part of my life, a familiar face who I see regularly and have a nice chat with. He’s housebound and so always jokes he can tell the weather by the clothes I’m wearing”
Marta, second from right on the bottom row, with her GoodGym Greenwich friends
On group sessions Marta has done all sorts but her favourite was the chance to don waders and get messy in the Quaggy. “It was a lot of fun and not something you normally get to do”. Attending group sessions are now part of Marta’s weekly routine “I go without thinking about it. Lewisham on a Monday and Greenwich on a Wednesday. Community is my motivation: it’s a great mixture of regular people who you meet and become friends outside of the sessions and new people to chat with.”
Of the #PowerTheGood campaign Marta is pleased her activities support those most at need and simply enjoys the time she spends on GoodGym sesions "It’s not an obligation or a chore, I do it because I can” she says. Marta has already attended 17 sessions since the start of September and is signed up for more over the coming weeks. “If it was just running I would be at a different running club - GoodGym is so much more than that” she says.
If it was just running I would be at a different running club - GoodGym is so much more than that
SHEILA ATTENBOROUGH - WINDSOR AND MAIDENHEAD
Sheila retired in March 2021 and was looking for something to do. Most of her friends had been through work and she wanted to increase her social life while doing something useful. Someone mentioned GoodGym and so she looked us up. For Sheila being outside was a big draw “I love gardening” she says “I’m really interested in conservation work and enjoy tasks which involve planting new plants or trees”
Windsor and Maidenhead is part of the social visits pilot and Sheila has enjoyed the chance to visit older people in the local area. “The social visits have been really good, getting to meet a wide variety of people I wouldn't normally meet, I’ve been shocked and enlightened about how brutally honest they have been about their loneliness and the impact it has on their lives. Maybe because I’m a stranger they feel they can open up”
Sheila has found the social side of GoodGym to be the real motivator, and that the group sessions have a real positive impact on her own mood. "The campaign has really helped focus our efforts, the group are incredibly friendly and enthusiastic, you feel really included and valued" Sheila reserves special praise for Amy, who leads GoodGym Windsor and Maidenhead and creates the sense of community. "Our Area Activator Amy is incredible and has huge charisma, she’s a brilliant leader”
...the group are incredibly friendly and enthusiastic, you feel really included and valued
Sheila has even more good deeds planned for October having already signed up for tasks involving the local baby bank and sorting donations for refugees.