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Help make this Christmas a little brighter for a lonely older person

Because no one should have no one.

Christmas is meant to be a time of joy and light. But imagine having nobody to pull a cracker with. No one to exchange a gift and share a hug with. Not a single soul to wish you a Merry Christmas.

We’re working hard to relieve the isolation and despair felt by so many. Gwilyn and Emlyn know the pain of feeling alone and isolated, as they explain in their stories below, but also what it’s like to find a light in the darkness through the gift of friendship.

Age Cymru is here.

We cannot let older people continue to suffer in the darkness of severe loneliness.

With your support you can help us continue to be here when we're needed the most.

How Age Cymru has made a difference

In June 2020, with the support of Welsh Government, we launched our new telephone befriending service, Friend in Need. This was in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The service provides a free weekly 30 minute telephone friendship call to older people in Wales who are 70 or over. It also provides information and support for ‘Friends’ already supporting or wanting to help people they know in their local community.

Friend in Need

Our Friend in Need service gives older people the vital gift of a free weekly friendship call. This year, we've made more than 12,500 friendship calls to older people.

"the calls have helped with the loneliness"

Emlyn has been receiving therapy after a traumatic bereavement and his therapist told him about our friendship calls and how this could help with his feelings of loneliness. He contacted us and we paired him with our volunteer, Ffion.

Emlyn says “I’ve lots in common and Ffion sees the world as I see it. I was so lucky being matched with Ffion, we’ve clicked so well she could have been my daughter”.

On our calls we talk about lots of things including the environment and politics. The weekly calls have helped me so much with loneliness and, to be honest, I’d like more calls with Ffion but I understand we both have lives’.

"I'm so happy that somebody cares enough to make the effort to call me"

Gwilym is 78 and lives alone, he has chronic fatique and is unable to leave his home and rarely speaks to anyone.

Gwilym signed up to our Friend in Need service and now receives a weekly friendship call from us. He enjoys speaking with our volunteer, John, and appreciates the fact we think about him and make that call every week. He particularly likes putting the world to rights. Gwilym says he's so appreciative on this service.

This year we’ve seen an increased reliance on Age Cymru Advice. We've dealt with more than 21,000 enquiries. With your support, we can continue to be here when we’re needed the most.

An advisor on the helpline

Age Cymru Advice answers thousands of calls for help every year about accessing services, claiming benefits and entitlements where the increase in need has been brought about by the pandemic.

Whether it's dedicated information to help someone cope with loneliness, a bereavement, the right number to call to arrange help after leaving hospital, or simply the chance to talk over a problem at home, Age Cymru Advice is here.

Age Cymru Advice

Age Cymru Advice : 0300 303 44 98

Lines are open 9am to 4pm Monday to Friday. Our advice line is the key provider of information and advice for people in later life.

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