Isolated and lonely elderly people across Kent and the rest of the UK are being invited to a series of monthly Sunday afternoon tea parties with Contact the Elderly, thanks to our recent £75,000 grant.
Contact the Elderly is dedicated to tackling loneliness and social isolation among older people. Supported by a network of volunteers, the charity organises monthly Sunday afternoon tea parties for small groups of older people, aged 75 and over, who live alone.
Each older guest is collected from their home by a volunteer driver and is taken to a volunteer host’s home, where they join a small group for tea and companionship. The tea parties bring people of all ages together, develop fulfilling friendships and support networks, and give everyone involved something to look forward to each month.
This grant will play an essential role in long-term funding for Contact the Elderly’s National Support Officer, who helps run 55 of the charity’s tea parties benefiting around 450 older guests, as well as coordinating over 700 of the charity’s 10,000 volunteers who help make the tea parties happen every month.
The need for action to help isolated elderly people is clear from recent statistics showing that a million older people have not spoken to anyone in the last month. There is also mounting evidence about the effect of loneliness on mental and physical health and wellbeing, with lonely people having a 64 per cent increased risk of developing dementia.
Cliff Rich, Acting CEO at Contact the Elderly, said:
“We are incredibly grateful to West Kent Freemasons for their generous grant which will continue to help us to reach more lonely and isolated elderly people. The act of attending a tea party is simple but profound and can make an enormous difference to someone who might not have spoken to anyone for weeks.”
West Kent Freemason, Mark Estaugh, visited the charity to find out more:
“We are very pleased to be able to support Contact the Elderly with their wonderful work helping some of the most vulnerable people in our community. The isolation of elderly people is a very serious problem that’s set to get much worse as our whole population ages.”
Get in touch with Contact the Elderly
Local residents interested in attending Contact the Elderly’s tea parties as an older guest, referring potential guests, or volunteering to help, can contact the charity’s National Office on Freephone 0800 716543
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