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Age UK is proud to be a member of the Jo Cox Commission on Loneliness which aims to tackle the silent epidemic of loneliness. Find out below how you can get involved in combatting isolation in your community.
During her time as an MP, Jo Cox was dedicated to combating loneliness in the UK. Jo formed an independent, cross-party Commission of MPs and charities to highlight the fact that we can all do something to help lonely people in our community.
Following her tragic murder, the Commission has been taken forward in Jo’s memory by Rachel Reeves MP from Labour and Seema Kennedy MP from the Conservatives in order to, in Jo’s words, ‘turbo charge the public’s awareness of loneliness.’
The Commission aims not simply to make us aware of the problem, but to ask us all to take action to reduce loneliness. With the message Start a Conversation, the Commission wants to get us all talking - whether chatting to a neighbour, visiting an old friend, or just making time for the people we meet.
Pledge to start a conversation
The Commission is working throughout 2017 to address the impact loneliness has on different sections of society.
Shockingly, more than 1.2 million older people are chronically lonely. In later life, loneliness can become overwhelming, with many feeling that there is no way out. Older people are particularly at risk of being lonely as they are more likely to experience deteriorating health or the death of a loved one and most surveyed by Gransnet will not discuss their feelings with friends or family.
Age UK, in partnership with the Alzheimer’s Society, British Red Cross, the Campaign to End Loneliness, The Silver Line, Royal Voluntary Service, Independent Age, Gransnet and The Big Lunch, was proud to lead the national spotlight on older people from 20 March to 23 April.
During this period and throughout the year, we highlighted what you can do as an individual to combat loneliness in your community. As Jo said, we can all do something to help lonely people in our community, so why not start a conversation with a lonely older person today.
Can you spare as little as 30 minutes a week to provide companionship for a lonely older person in your community? Become a volunteer for Age UK and help to end loneliness.
How you can change the lives of lonely older people (PDF 1.03MB)
In support of the Commission, lots of MPs have already pledged to meet with local older people's groups to discuss how they can help to tackle loneliness in their local constituency. By writing to your MP you can encourage them to get involved in this important work as well.
Find out which MPs have already pledged to tackle loneliness
For more information:
Call Age UK Advice: 0800 678 1174
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