Protect elderly from isolation

9:50am Wednesday 8th February 2012

WITH the start of a new year, the charity Contact the Elderly is urging residents of Malton and Pickering to remember their lonely, elderly neighbours who feel the effects of social isolation 12 months of the year.

A recent letter in the Daily Telegraph calling on David Cameron to reform care and home help services in England, states that ‘an estimated 800,000 older people are being left without basic care – lonely, isolated and at risk’.

In addition, and adding to the scale of the challenge, Contact the Elderly knows from almost 50 years of experience that there are many more lonely and socially isolated, older people out there, although not necessarily in need of care.

Regardless of current budget constraints, we can all do something about loneliness among older people.

Contact the Elderly offers friendship and support to frail older people in Malton and Pickering, who have become trapped virtually in their own homes, by organising free monthly tea parties for small groups of older people, with the support of volunteers. These social gatherings help the elderly to form new friendships and to develop support networks, which are vital to maintaining an independent life.

In the Malton and Pickering area, we need more volunteer drivers to collect the older guests from their homes and accompany them to the social gatherings one Sunday afternoon a month, as well as volunteer hosts to hold the tea parties in their own homes once a year.

Anyone inspired to get involved in alleviating loneliness among older people during 2012 and beyond, can phone either 01535 632592 or email mary.robinson@contact-the elderly.org.uk

MARY ROBINSON, Kildwick

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