Age UK Milton Keynes is calling on people in Milton Keynes 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.
Being loved and cared for is important to us all, whatever our age, but it's especially true at Christmas - a time when the companionship and support of friends and family seem to mean even more and loneliness is more keenly felt.
Every day Age UK Milton Keynes hears from people who are experiencing devastating life events such as bereavement, which can give rise to overwhelming feelings of loneliness and loss. Left unaddressed this can cause long-term misery and contribute to the development of serious medical conditions, such as heart problems and strokes, mental health issues and dementia.
Jane Palmer, Chief Executive at Age UK Milton Keynes said, “Loneliness doesn’t only affect older people over the Christmas period, but because most of us expect to spend this time of the year enjoying ourselves with family and friends it can make those who are unwillingly on their own feel all the more left out and miserable.
For many lonely older people the festive season also brings back memories of happier times in years gone by, reminding them of partners and other close relatives and friends who are no longer around and who they sorely miss.
“Chronic loneliness is not only horrible to experience day in, day out, it can also have a devastating impact on an older person’s mental and physical health. That’s why at Age UK Milton Keynes we are committed to being here all-year-round for older people, to help tackle the loneliness that is blighting far too many later lives.
“There is something we can all do to make a positive difference to the older people around us. Having a friendly chat with an older person on the bus or in a shop, or offering to help an elderly neighbour with their shopping if the weather is bad, can do more good than most of us would ever guess, and at very little cost to ourselves. In fact I guarantee you’ll feel better too as a result.”
Age UK Milton Keynes provides practical and emotional support to thousands of older people every year. Find out how you can support Age UK Milton Keynes by donating or volunteering to help lonely older people. Or get in touch by phone or email.