New partnership aims to get people in Dumbarton walking and talking to combat isolation

A new partnership between Dumbarton Football Club and a local voluntary group is hoping to get people walking and talking to combat lockdown isolation and inactivity.

West Dunbartonshire Community and Volunteering Services (WDCVS) have teamed up with the Sons of the Rock to launch walking groups at the club’s iconic stadium, with Daren Borzysnki of WDCVS hoping that the new venue will be the perfect place to get more people involved in their popular organised walks.

He told the Lennox: “There is a community spirit around Dumbarton Football Club and there is a lot of history in the area connected with the club.

“We’re hoping that people see it as a different opportunity to link in with the football club but also as a way of meeting other people, getting themselves out and walking.

However with fans locked out over lockdown, and isolation and inactivity rising over the past 15 months, Daren hopes that now is the ideal time to launch a further initiative.

He continued: “We feel like this year is a good opportunity to do that little bit more, and look at ways in which we can address isolation and loneliness issues.

“But there is also the physical limits that people have experienced over the past year as a result of having to stay in.

“That is something we’ve experienced from our walking groups. We want to help get people out.”

The groups require volunteer leaders however, with Daren explaining how much he gets out of the local groups that already run.

He added: “I’m quite a social person. I enjoy meeting other people, I enjoy talking to people and it’s great to hear stories from some of the older walkers in our groups who know a lot about the local history.

“It’s great to hear the stories they tell you about growing up in West Dunbartonshire, or about some of the players they have seen or known over the years. It’s great to hear these stories that I wouldn’t otherwise know if I wasn’t part of the walks.”

Meanwhile Dumbarton FC’s general manager Antonia Love hopes that the walks could see more people turning up to support the Sons.

She said: “We are delighted to be working alongside WDCVS to offer the led walks at the stadium.

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