Help prevent elderly people spending Christmas alone

FOR INTERNET USE
FOR INTERNET USE

Nationwide charity Friends of the Elderly is encouraging people across the Ribble Valley to organise activities so no older person will be alone on Christmas Day.

The charity has partnered up with Community Christmas to help the 35% of older people who are affected by loneliness across Lancashire.

However, there are only currently two events across the entire county, with the nearest being in Darwen.

Steve Allen, chief executive of Friends of the Elderly, said: “We know that loneliness has a devastating impact on older people’s lives and that Christmas Day, traditionally a time for family, can be especially difficult for those with no family and friends around.

“With the kindness and dedication of activity organisers, more and more older people will have somewhere they can go on Christmas Day to enjoy the company of others.

“Together we can make this Christmas one to remember for thousands of older people across the country.”

If you would like to host a Christmas Day event there is still time to get involved.

An activity can be whatever people in the community can enjoy, such as a Christmas lunch at a community centre, a Christmas film screening, or a Christmas walk around a park.

If you plan to organise an event, or know of somebody who will, then make sure to contact Community Christmas so it can be put on the website so people are aware of the events happening in Lancashire.

Caroline Billington, Founder of Community Christmas, added: “It’s so fantastic when we get a call from an older person and are able to find a place where they will be welcomed on Christmas Day, whether it is a care home opening their doors, tea and cake in a community hall, or a trip to the pub.

“Not only does this mean these older people have somewhere to go on Christmas Day but also quite often we hear of them forming friendships that last the whole year through, which is what it is all about.”

For more information or to organise an event, go to fote.org.uk/Christmas or communitychristmas.org.uk.