A charity that helps older people cope with isolation and loneliness is setting up a support network in the Skegness area.
Contact the Elderly, the charity dedicated to tackling loneliness and isolation among older people, is inviting older residents in the town to come to tea one Sunday afternoon a month for a few hours of companionship.
In order for this to be possible, the charity is also urgently appealing for volunteers to spare just a few hours each month to help with the running of local tea parties – and enjoy a cuppa themselves.
The charity aims to relieve the acute loneliness of isolated older people, aged 75 and above, who live alone. Each older guest is collected from their home by a volunteer driver and taken to a volunteer host’s home, where they meet with a small group for tea, chat and friendship.
The group is warmly welcomed by a different host each month, but the drivers remain the same which means that over the months and years, acquaintances turn into friends and loneliness is replaced by companionship.
Contact the Elderly’s Midlands and North West development officer Prabina Lord said: “Activities for people aged 75 and above are normally limited to weekdays, so Sunday can be a particularly long and difficult day.
“Our tea parties are sometimes the only social outing our guests have in a month, so they can make a real difference. However with real shortage of volunteers in the area anyone who can spare a couple of hours one Sunday a month, has a driving licence, a car and a capacity for drinking tea, is eligible.
“And for those interested in becoming a host, it would just involve a couple of hours once or twice a year. It’s not a big commitment, and our volunteers genuinely get as much out of the experience as our older guests, so I’m calling for anyone who is interested in giving something back to their community to please get in touch with me as soon as possible.”
Older residents living alone, without the support of family and friends, interested in joining a Contact the Elderly group and supporters interested in volunteering once a month as a driver, or twice a year as a host can contact Prabina Lord on 0161 460 2950 or email firstname.lastname@example.org