For those over 60 in the UK, Age UK runs a thing called ‘Call in Time’. It’s a telephone befriending service; basically it means that if you live alone, and would like someone to talk to, they set you up with one of their volunteers – after preliminary vetting to discover your interests and preferences. then you get called once a week, for a half hour chat – about anything you like. It isn’t like the Samaritans, because it’s not for emergencies or for when you’re in distress, it’s just there so that the isolated and lonely have someone to talk to.
It seems like a good idea to me – and they also use it as a way to keep tabs on those who are completely alone: if you don’t answer when they call, after several tries they’ll ring your chosen person (next of kin, or a neighbour – whatever) and get them to go round and see if you’re ok.
I think more of this sort of thing should be going on. i also think there’s scope for some online connecting between older people; and now our generation (baby boomers) are getting into their sixties, the internet is a familiar tool – unlike those of an earlier generation, many of whom are not online.
for those wishing to know more about the telephone befriending service, contact the Coordinator, on 020 303 31357, or email Jaya.Sampla@ageuk.org.uk
From a friend’s Facebook Status and reproduced here because I think this is an excellent idea.