We chat to Fiona Phillips on the set of our new TV advert to find out what the Spread the Warmth campaign means to her.
Hello Fiona, can you tell us what’s going on today?
Today we’re in a very cold studio (oh the irony!), somewhere in London, near Waterloo I think, getting my make-up ready to record Age UK’s Spread the Warmth campaign TV advert.
It’s getting colder out there so older people are getting colder and some of them can’t afford to warm up.
How’s the campaign going to make a difference?
The Spread the Warmth campaign is appealing to people to donate to help Age UK do its job.
They’re helping older people by giving financial help, support with heating bills and just going around being a friendly face and a friendly neighborly type – the sort of person we’d all like to be, but in this frantic world most of us aren’t anymore.
Donations will help older people feel warmer, happier and less lonely this winter.
What does it mean to you?
Well I’ve been an ambassador of Age UK for a while now and the reason I am is because I’m just very passionate about older people actually.
I think they’re very much treated as a separate species and that’s why I say ‘older people’, not ‘the elderly’ or that sort of thing, because it just compartmentalises.
We’re all heading that way you know, people become old, unless they’re very unfortunate, so I’ve always been very passionate about that. Hearing some of the stories it really is heartbreaking.
People might have had children, achieved things in their lives and they’re full of wisdom and experience, but they're sitting on their own and they’re cold and terribly, terribly lonely. It’s heartbreaking.
How can people help?
What we’d like people to do is donate £10, or any amount would be nice actually, but £10 will go a long way and it will really, really help older people this winter feel less cold and lonely.
And what else is happening in the world of Fiona Phillips?
Oh there are loads of things going on actually and I’m going a bit mad! I write a lot, there are a few TV things bubbling and simmering. I tend to do a lot of campaigning as well.
Thousands of older people die every year, because of the cold. Just £5 can make a difference and help to save a life today