REPORTER PATCH: Bolton
Our reporter, Carole Ogden, is originally from East Sussex, but has lived in Bolton nearly 30 years.
Carole took voluntary redundancy at 55 for health reasons and to care for her mum, who had dementia.
She is a poet and chair of a Big Local project in her community – Tonge with the Haulgh – and did a degree, PGCE, masters and Level 5 Diploma, all in her 50s!
Carole, who also volunteers at Haulgh Hub and the Sea Cadets, has won a Bolton University inaugural award for writing, teaches English, organises the community’s Great Get Together every year, enjoys crochet and attends a sewing class.
Carole’s passion for writing has led to recognition from her peers and the public. She has a poem displayed in Bolton Central Library and is a BBC Radio Poem for Manchester finalist and short story winner.
Her skills in poetry and prose will be well used for the Talking About My Generation campaign, and she wants to promote what is going on for over 50s and break down barriers, as well as learn new things and share her talents.
Carole says: “My personal and professional lives both began again in my 40/50s. I would like people to see that you can reinvent yourself later in life, learning never stops. I also really value the new friends I have made through community engagement, who enrich my life, and I really feel part of something much bigger and more valuable.
“Younger people can probably sometimes see us as irrelevant maybe, as there is less interaction between generations than there used to be, as family and society leaves us more scattered and isolated. I would like people to see over 50s as being interesting and relevant.
“In an ideal world, I would like there not to be any mention of age, race, gender at all. If something is interesting or amusing, the age of the person involved is irrelevant. It would be good to treat us all as the same, with no stereotypical focus.”
Read more about the Talking About My Generation campaign here.