100,000 OLDER PEOPLE IN OUR AREA FEEL LONELIER AT CHRISTMAS
Published on 01 December 2017 03:04 PM
AGE UK CAMDEN ARE TACKLING SOCIAL ISOLATION
New Age UK film shows heart-breaking reality of the festive season for many older people
New research for Age UK shows that more than 100,000 older people in the South East feel lonelier at Christmas time,[i] and has produced a short film entitled ‘Just another day’which shines a light on the crushing, chronic loneliness which 1.2 million older people are living with in England.[ii]
The film shows the everyday monotony of a lonely widower. For him, as for millions of older people in our country, each day is much like the last, and in the film we see that even Christmas is no exception. Sadly, this is the heart breaking reality for many older people in this country.
More than two in five of the older people in the South East surveyed for Age UK feel their days can be repetitive[iii]. Based on the survey, the Charity estimates that more than 85,000 people aged 65 and over in the South East don’t see or hear from someone for days on end over the festive period.[iv]
Age UK Camden’scampaign “No One Should Have No One” is calling on people locally to pledge their support and donate to help the Charity be there for older people and tackle the loneliness that is blighting too many lives.
Chief Executive Officer at Age UK Camden, Gary Jones said, “Every day Age UK Camden hears from people who are experiencing overwhelming feelings of loneliness. Although the festive period can particularly exacerbate feelings of isolation and loss, so we are asking people to volunteer and donate to help us reach these individuals.
We are committed to providing front line services and support for older people in the community which help to tackle loneliness all year round. Last year we helped over 9,000 people offering counselling, befriending, information and advice.”
One of our volunteer befrienders, Paul said, “I visit a 90-year-old gentleman, Dennis, who spends most of his time at home alone. I cooked Christmas lunch at his flat last year, it was the first time in 55 years he actually spent Christmas day in company. I cannot say how grateful I am for having been given this opportunity to befriend a local older person. This is my 5th year with Dennis and it is, in many ways, one of the most rewarding experiences in my life.”
To find out how you can support Age UK Camden by donating or volunteering to help lonely older people go to: https://www.ageuk.org.uk/camden/get-involved/ or call 020 7239 0400.
- Press Release Ends-
- All figures, unless stated otherwise, are taken from Age UK/ Kantar TNS polling research which took place in November 2017. The polling was conducted face-to-face and with a UK-wide sample of 2,585 people aged 65+.
[i]Approx. 102,630 people aged 65+ (6%) feel lonelier at Christmas time. Kantar TNS polling for Age UK, Nov 2017 – sample of 2,585 people aged 65+ in the UK. Figures extrapolated by Age UK to regional population using latest ONS Population Estimates.
[ii] Marmot, M., Oldfield, Z., Clemens, S., Blake, M., Phelps, A., Nazroo, J., Steptoe, A., Rogers, N., Banks, J., Oskala, A. (2016). English Longitudinal Study of Ageing: Waves 0-7, 1998-2015. http://dx.doi.org/10.5255/UKDA-SN-5050-12. Figures extrapolated by Age UK to national population using latest ONS Population Estimates. Individuals experiencing “chronic loneliness” are those who are often/always lonely for at least two of the last three years and at least sometimes lonely in the other year of the three.
[iii] 43 per cent (approx. 735,490). Kantar TNS polling for Age UK, Nov 2017.
[iv] 5 per cent (approx. 85,520) of those aged 65+ don’t see or hear from anyone for three days or more over Christmas.