The ‘Gateway to Friendship’ Befriending Project will build on the work previously developed by Age UK Lindsey and reach out to lonely, isolated, struggling and vulnerable over 50s in targeted areas of the local East Lindsey Community. The project will offer one-to-one support and friendship to over 50s, who live alone and feel isolated and lonely, signposting to additional help such as Information and Advice if the need is identified.
The majority of older people are visited at home, for a chat and a cup of tea, but the idea is that if client’s are able to leave their home then they are encouraged to engage with social activity groups, such as Lunch Clubs or TED activities where they can meet other people and make new friends. If they need additional support they are signposted to other services.
The idea of the home visits is to provide a gateway for more interaction and to meet new people and the project will increase the number of hours of befriending delivered, the number of volunteers involved in the delivery of befriending and the number of clients signposted to social group activities in East Lindsey or to further support. Loneliness is a growing issue for older people. Over half of people aged 75 and over live alone, and 1 in 10 people aged 65 or over say they are always or often feel lonely – Age UK
Our mission is:To help make later life a fulfilling and enjoyable experience for older people and address the causes of loneliness, isolation and poverty.
Through funding received through TED our Befriending Service has been able to coordinate befriending for clients in East Lindsey signposting to other organisations and services as appropriate.