29th May 2018

Benny Foar began the weekly Amblers walking group in Auckland to provide a low intensity workout for Blind Foundation clients and staff.

However, the glue that holds the group together is the social benefits and the peer-to-peer support, and Benny credits this for the event’s longevity: the group is celebrating its two-year anniversary. Many members have been with the Amblers from the beginning and since become friends.

“We get together once a week and walk and talk. It’s one of those small things that improves the quality of life for many of its members – to get outside, breathe fresh air, get some exercise, take a break and have a chat,” says Benny.

“We have members of all ages, from their 20s through to their 70s, and people from all backgrounds. This is wonderful to see and something that happened naturally as time went on. The social inclusion aspect of the walking group is a happy but unintended consequence.”

The group, consisting of clients and staff, meet every Monday at the Blind Foundation’s Awhina House in Auckland and amble over to the Auckland Domain – an easy walk away.

Walking group members have varying degrees of vision. They are supported by everyone pointing out hazards as they come upon them when they are able, and by sighted volunteers helping keep the group safe.

“Without the help of our loyal volunteers we would not be able to carry on,” says Benny.

On 14 May they celebrated their anniversary with a lunch reuniting current and former members.

Watch: The New Zealand Herald named Benny Foar as a Herald Hero for his leadership of the amblers.

Join the Amblers – new members are welcome

What: Low intensity Amblers walking group

Where: One hour walk around the Auckland Domain

When: Mondays, 12.30 – 1.30pm. Meet at Awhina House Reception

Who: For Blind Foundation clients and staff

Contact:  Benny Foar on 0220793527 to register your interest or for more information.