Cheshire East Council and its partners in the Ageing Well programme are taking the initiative as they look to tackle the problem of ‘social isolation’.
Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has stated that the country has ‘utterly failed to confront’ the problem of loneliness as more than 800,000 people are said to be lonely inEngland. But the Council wants to highlight the issue with community leaders in the region at a support event to be held at Richmond Nantwich on Friday 8th November 2013.
The 2011 census tells us that there has been a 16 per cent increase in the number of people who live alone in Cheshire East from Census 2001.There are 47,328 single person households in the Borough compared to 40,919 a decade earlier.And with the number of people aged 75 and over predicted to increase by 4,200 by 2020, there highlights the potential of a growing problem.
Councillor Janet Clowes, Winter Wellbeing spokeswoman, said: “It is at times like this, when the nights are drawing in and Christmas gets closer, that we naturally want to be surrounded by families and friends.“But research says that, nationally, five million people state that television is their main form of company. This is a terrible state of affairs and something that ought to be addressed.“In Cheshire East, we really want to try and make a difference, which is why we are hosting these events in which community leaders can share ideas about how they can make a difference to people’s lives.“There is some good work already being done but we must do more. I hope this event will also encourage participants to make pledges of further support.”
Nicola Tooke, Village Advisor remarked " As a founder member of the Association for Retirement Community Organisations, we are keen to raise awareness about the emerging models of extra care, assisted living and specialised supported housing for older people from a diverse range of socio economic and ethnic backgrounds. We are keen to build links and maintain relationships with key stakeholders within communities that they serve, in order to understand and adapt to local and regional initiatives and policies and to provide an insight into the services provided by Richmond. We also recognise the importance of working collectively with other local stakeholders and providers; this initiative is something that we are delighted to be involved with."