It's a sad fact that many older people living in Great Britain today feel lonely, isolated and disconnected from their communities. Life changes such as retirement, the loss of a partner or a health crisis can make people particularly vulnerable. There are over one million older people living in our communities today who are always, or often, lonely.
Without opportunities for meaningful social contact, older people can become isolated and increasingly cut off from their neighbourhoods, leading to a deterioration of health and wellbeing.
Funds raised by players of People's Postcode Lottery are helping Royal Voluntary Service to develop local, volunteer led activities that help older people get the most out of life, including:
- Clubs and centres - safe, warm and welcoming spaces where older people can get together to enjoy a meal, take part in activities and enjoy regular contact.
- Community Companion schemes - volunteers visiting older people on a one-to-one basis, providing companionship and practical help with things like shopping or a lift to an appointment.
- Home library schemes – delivering books, DVDs, and more to people who struggle to get out and about.
Daphne, a service-user, said, "When I first lost my husband, the Royal Voluntary Service lunch club was somewhere to go which brought me back into the community. We meet up, enjoy a very nice meal and a natter. I've made lots of friends since coming here. I'm not sitting at home eating on my own and there's no washing-up!"
You can help Royal Voluntary Service support older people to get the best from life. For more information, visit their website www.royalvoluntaryservice.org.uk. To help support their work, sign up to play People's Postcode Lottery.