The Silver Line
London, United Kingdom
The epidemic of isolation and loneliness is growing in the UK as more than half of 75-year-olds live alone and 1 in 10 elderly people suffer 'intense' loneliness. Loneliness is a big killer and "as dangerous as smoking 15 cigarettes in a day".
For the period July 2014-2015, SJNEFFL funded the Silver Line to train 305 volunteers who were matched with 282 old people who were then called by the volunteers for a chat on a weekly basis.
Wanting to reach the Gujerati community, further funding was allocated from March- August 2015 to recruit a Gujerati Outreach Worker who held 19 consultation meetings with the Gujerati speaking community in North London which was attended by 1540 elderly.
Best described in the words of those who received the calls: "So good to know someone knows you exist." "I am getting my confidence back."
Apart from recruiting 10 Gujerati speaking volunteers and a small increase in calls to the Helpline from the North London focus area, the most relevant impact is that the Silver Line now has the knowledge how best to engage ethnic minority communities and they can replicate the project in different communities.