A CARE company in York has pledged to introduce a new initiative to help older people in the area when they are out and about.

Home Instead York has announced it will introduce the ‘Take a Seat’ scheme, which will ask businesses to welcome older people throughout York inside, providing a place to sit and facilities even if they are not a paying customer.

Run in conjunction with the City of York Council and Age Friendly York, the initiative provides a clear visual message, meaning if they need a break, they are welcome.

Owner of Home Instead York, Luke Norbury, said: “Everyday our work keeps older people safe and well in their own homes, as well as providing vital companionship.

"We want to extend this caring nature further to our local population, and the ‘Take a Seat’ initiative is a great way for us and the wider community to help older people enjoy our city more.

"Our involvement will help older people to feel more comfortable when out and about in the city.”

Through the scheme, Home Instead are encouraging businesses to welcome older people into their premises throughout their opening hours.

Research by Age Friendly York found that local elderly residents think they would benefit from having more places where they can rest their legs and they also felt that there weren’t enough toilet facilities available for them to use. This initiative targets those exact needs for the older people of York.

Home Instead York provides companionship-led home care services to older people across the local area. Joining the initiative only furthers their mission to "change the face of ageing" and to help people enjoy more independence in their later years.

The care company have been lobbying other local businesses to pledge their support - and many have readily and enthusiastically got involved, displaying a sticker in their window which makes it clear for visitors to see their involvement.

Cllr Carol Runciman, executive member for health and adult social care at City of York Council, said: “I’m delighted that the 'Take a Seat' initiative is helping make the city more accessible to older people.

“Thank you to everyone who took part in Age Friendly York’s consultation and whose ideas and observations have helped shape this project.

"To deliver the scheme, our partner, Home Instead, has worked to develop a network of participating businesses across the city who display a sticker in their window to show how they are supporting people who need to take a seat.”

For more information on the initiative and to view an interactive map of businesses involved, visit the Home Instead York website.

Any business interested in getting involved should contact Steph Wood on 01904 690884 or email: info@york.homeinstead.co.uk.