LOCAL organisations are joining forces to spread some goodwill to those in Worcester and Malvern experiencing loneliness.
Throughout January, Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust with Worcestershire County Council, Age UK Hereford and Worcestershire and the Reconnections Service, are working to highlight the support available locally to tackle loneliness and isolation.
A recent report by the Jo Cox Commission revealed that loneliness is as harmful to health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day and affects nine million UK people.
“There is believed to be at least 35,000 older people across Worcestershire experiencing loneliness, and we want to work together to reduce this, and to reconnect those living in isolation,” said Michelle Clarke, director of Nursing and Quality at Worcestershire Health and Care Trust said.
“For an increasing number of people, particularly those in later life, loneliness can define their lives and have a substantial impact on their physical and mental health and wellbeing.”
Staff from Worcestershire Health and Care Trust have been donating Christmas cards to be hand delivered by community nurses to patients in the lead up to Christmas.
The cards contain a warming Christmas message and an information leaflet from Reconnections, a service to reduce loneliness in Worcestershire, led by Age UK Herefordshire & Worcestershire.
Sophie Pryce, Reconnections Manager said, ‘It is great to see lives being changed through our free service, connecting people, places and activities in the area. We want the public to be our eyes and ears across the county, to let us know who else needs our help.”
If you’re concerned that you, or someone you know may be experiencing isolation and loneliness, contact Reconnections on 01905 740954.