10 things MPs can do for older constituents during the coronavirus crisis
As an MP, you have a unique role in your community. Here are 10 simple ways you can help your older and at-risk constituents during the coronavirus epidemic.
Ask the Government to help the voluntary sector with long-term financial support
This is one of the best things you can do for your older constituents right now. The recent funding announcement from the Government was welcome, but life is not going to go back to normal any time soon, and charities with reduced incomes are struggling to meet the growing need. Please email us to find out how you can help.
- Check in with your older and at-risk residents. Share Age UK’s advice line and online resources, such as our handy guide on how to make a video call and tips to help you stay active.
- Use your newsletter and social media channels to encourage your constituents to check in with older neighbours. Remind them to maintain social distancing measures.
- Organise a social distancing constituency coffee morning! Set a date and time, make a cuppa and get local residents to stand on their front doorstep or put their head outside their window. Many older people are struggling with loneliness and just seeing other people’s faces can make a difference.
- Hold a virtual surgery and keep your phone lines open for longer.
- Offer up your constituency office as a place for local organisations to use to take in food donations.
- Ask your campaign volunteers if they could help out local initiatives.
- Contact local schools and suggest that their students make cards for older people in their communities. Ask for cards to be sent to your office and distribute them to care homes or mutual aid groups locally.
- Tackle loneliness by starting a constituency book club. Every week, pick a book and tweet or email about it. Here is a brilliant example from Age UK Camden.
- Put helpful numbers in the footer of all your emails. Tweet the numbers and put them on a dedicated coronavirus page on your website.
- Contact your local radio station and newspaper and ask them to promote your local Age UK’s advice line and services. Please contact your local Age UK before doing so – you can find their details here.
Useful numbers for your constituents
Please share these numbers with your constituents. For practical information and advice, call Age UK Advice: 0800 055 6112. For a cheerful chat, day or night, call Silver Line: 0800 470 80 90.
You could also consider tweeting and sharing fundraising calls, or film a personal message to older residents in your area and shout out your local Age UK.
Age UK has launched a Coronavirus Emergency Appeal aiming to raise £10 million to provide vital support and services at this crucial time. Find out more.
Share your ideas
Do you have any other ideas or support you are already providing your older constituents? Tell us about it! If you have any questions or suggestions, please get it touch and we can provide you with additional information and resources to help your constituents.