A visit to the library in April could be good for your body as well as your mind as older people are invited to pick up a pair of slippers at some branches around North Yorkshire.

The offer aims to help to prevent slips, trips and falls by older people.

North Yorkshire Library Service is working with North Yorkshire Sport and other partners to support older people in living in their own homes for longer.

Louise Wallace, North Yorkshire’s Director of Public Health, said: “For many older people, who may be mentally fit but physically frail, having a fall can lead to a loss of independence. Research has shown that one of the most common causes of falls by older people is loose, worn or backless slippers.”

Malton library will hold a Slipper Social in April at which older people can pick up free anti-slip slippers. The slippers have rubber soles and are wide fitting to make it easier for people with restricted mobility to get them on and off. They also have a good Velcro fastener so they will not slip off.

At the same time as picking up a new pair of slippers, visitors will be able to:

• learn about or try age-appropriate exercises, supervised by NY Sport, to help them to stay active and healthy;

• collect a free Get Moving activity pack provided by NY Sport;

• get advice from other organisations on how to stay well and safe;

• find out about local social groups and clubs; and

• learn about how the library can support health and wellbeing.

The first Slipper Social will be at Malton library on Wednesday, 6 April, from 1.30pm to 4pm. Among the partners available to advise on wellbeing and independence issues are Living Well, Ryedale Carers Plus and Ryedale Community Support Organisation. The Fire and Rescue Service and North Yorkshire Police will advise people on how to ensure they are as safe as possible at home.

Simon Pierce, Health and Wellbeing Manager for North Yorkshire Sport, said: “We are pleased to support these events and promote the benefits of keeping physically active throughout life. We look forward to discussing and demonstrating how exercises and activities can be adapted to be inclusive for everyone, and we will provide activity packs to help get people started.”

Chrys Mellor, Library Service General Manager, said: “Libraries are always looking to support older people in remaining independent and active. This latest initiative will help people avoid falls, and help reduce pressure on health and emergency services. At the same time, the free slippers social events are a great way for people to find out about other valuable services and access a variety of information and advice within their community.

“Older people can drop in at any time during the events and free refreshments will be available. If we run out of some sizes, we will do our best to get more and get them to people after the event.”