For many people, lockdown has increased feelings of loneliness, especially if they live alone or have no friends and family nearby.
Our columnist Judy Murray, 60, who lives just 20 minutes from her parents, admits self-isolation must be particularly hard for the older generation, who aren’t as mobile and therefore are less likely to maintain contact with the outside world.
She said: “A few years ago, I remember helping to pack up food hampers with a project in the East End in Glasgow as part of Children in Need. We went out on deliveries and it was clear the older people who lived alone were so happy just to see a friendly face, and have somebody to talk to. It really opened my eyes to the number of people who must be out there struggling on their own.
“It’s absolutely vital for older people that there is somebody at the end of the phone. It’s very important they have some kind of regular contact if they don’t have family to check on them, and I think lockdown has made us think even more about those who are at risk.
“Now more than ever, it’s so important to bring communities together.”
Her mum Shirley Erksine, 85, says she and her husband, Roy, are lucky to have friends and family who can drop off shopping or have a quick chat from a safe distance. But many elderly people in their community aren’t as fortunate.
“We are very lucky because our three children all live locally, so they have been leaving shopping on the doorstep for us and checking in. We also live right on the golf course in Dunblane, so we take it in turns to take the dog out there for our daily exercise, and we can wave over the fence to the joggers and people passing by.
“I have one friend who sadly lost her husband very recently, and we talk practically every day on the phone. But not everyone has that.
“The phone line that Age Scotland provide must be absolutely essential for many people – a real lifeline.”
It’s your call: Today we urge you, our big-hearted readers, to give a little to support Age Scotland’s vital lifeline for older people with nowhere else to turn.
Click here to read more.
Text AGESCOT to 70490 to donate £10
Call 0333 323 2400
Where your money goes
£10 would pay for two friendship calls to an older person
£25 would pay for a week of daily calls
£100 would sponsor a helpline adviser for one day’s worth of friendship calls
£500 would pay for 100 friendship calls
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