The festivities can be a very exciting time of the year for some, but for others, it can be a particularly lonely time of year.
Loneliness can be caused by a number of factors – perhaps the loss of a loved one, moving away from friends and family, losing social contact with others after leaving a job or health issues that make it difficult to get out and about and do the things you previously enjoyed.
How can I help somebody who is feeling lonely?
Everyone can play their part by keeping an eye on their vulnerable residents and neighbours and just checking that they are okay. Staying for a cup of tea or asking them if they need any help with their shopping will mean a great deal to people.
What help is there if I’m feeling lonely?
There are lots of community groups and volunteering opportunities in Knowsley for residents who’d like to get ‘out and about’ more. Further information is available on the Live Well Directory at www.thelivewelldirectory.com.
The Live Well Directory also lists details of the free community Christmas dinner on 25 December in Halewood Village, details of online support for young carers (aged 16-30 years) from ‘Caring Alone’ as well as details of regular afternoon tea parties.
There’s also the Silverline dedicated telephone line (0800 4708 090) for older people who need information, friendship and advice, the ‘Side by Side’ befriending service in Knowsley, as well as the First Step for those who want to escape from an abusive relationship and may feel disconnected from their family and friends.
Age UK also offer a range of advice and support through their website or you can call their advice line on 0800 055 6112 – lines are open 9am to 7pm, 365 days a year. You can also sign up for a free weekly friendship call.
MIND’s website explains loneliness, giving practical suggestions for what you can do and where you can go for support. In addition, the Samaritans are available 365 days a year if you are worried about something or feeling lonely. You can contact them on freephone 116 123.
Cllr Sean Donnelly, Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care, said:
“Most people will feel lonely at some point in their lives. It’s a deeply personal experience that, in most cases, will thankfully pass, but for others, it can have a significant impact on their wellbeing.
“The main thing is that help and support is available at the touch of a button or by picking up the phone.
“We can all play our part too by keeping a look-out for our vulnerable neighbours and relatives and just making sure that they are okay.”