First team squad members Johnny Gorman and Yohann Lasimant popped into the SCORE centre opposite the Matchroom stadium last week to lend a hand with the Christmas festivities taking place involving the ‘Extra Time’ project run by Leyton Orient Community Sports Programme (LOCSP).
‘Extra Time’ has now completed three successful years of delivering exercise based sessions and social activities to the 60+ age group within our local community.
Howard Gould, Development Coach, explains; “The project was originally developed by the Football Foundation and Sports Relief in order to cater for the older generation, encouraging this age group, that can somewhat be forgotten when it comes to community participation, into exercise programmes and sports activities whilst retaining a social aspect. We (LOCSP) were one of the pilot schemes invited to take part about 4 years ago and although the original funding has now ceased, we feel it is an integral part of our community programme and so look towards obtaining funding annually to maintain the programme.
“Thankfully last year the then Mayor of Waltham Forest, Richard Sweden, was so impressed with the project that he chose LOCSP as his charity of the year with funds being directed to ‘Extra Time’ which has allowed us to continue into next year.”
Activities such as Boccia, Tai Chi, seated aerobics and computing are now provided on a weekly basis and a bi-annual Tea Dance has taken place for the past two years, one at Christmas and one around Easter time.
Carol Canham, a regular attendee at the Paradox Centre in Chingford said, “We love it! The local council promise us things but it rarely happens. We really look forward to our Boccia sessions with Howard and exercises with Kayleigh and have a real laugh. And we also enjoy the Tea Dances, having a sing-song and a dance plus meeting up with friends and of course, the young players!”
Johnny and Yohann took time out of their day off to help with drawing the raffle and having photos with all the partygoers. “I had fun,” commented Yohann and Johnny added, “It’s good to see the older members of the community having a good time. And it’s good to see what Leyton Orient provide for the local public. I’ve learned a lot whilst I’ve been here, getting out and about, and it’s enjoyable.”
There was live music from the BobbyRay Duo and a special piano recital and carol singing by eight year old Anastasia Gould. And a special mention must go to Kelly from Leyton Community Action who prepared and served the tea and snacks!
If you would like any further information on the ‘Extra Time’ project, please contact Howard Gould on 0208 556 5973 or email [email protected]