The number of over-50s experiencing loneliness is set to reach two million by 2025. This compares to around 1.4 million in 2016– a 49% increase in 10 years. Half a million older people go at least five or six days a week without seeing or speaking to anyone at all. Loneliness and social isolation are associated with an increased risk of developing coronary heart disease and stroke making it a real silent pandemic.
Our home visiting model provides a tried and tested framework which will enable your church or Christian organisation to set up and run a befriending service in which volunteers make weekly visits to those requesting regular contact. These visits are made on a weekly basis and usually last for around one hour. They often provide a real lifeline for many people who would not normally have contact with others. Visits can include sharing recent news, discussing common subjects of interest, prayer (if requested) or playing board games.
The aim is to develop good quality relationships and, where possible, to encourage participation in local community activities and events or arrange trips to places of interest. Where there could be a benefit in recommending other local services or groups, referrals can also be made where necessary. Many volunteers report that they also enjoy getting to know and finding out more about the person they visit so everyone benefits!
HOW IT WORKS
We provide training, documents, support and advice required to create and run a home visiting service including guidance in finding a coordinator, securing funding and building links with local organisations.
Our core team are dedicated to supporting partner churches through the journey of befriending along the way so they never need to feel on their own. Working with Linking Lives UK enables local partners to avoid duplication of effort by using our tried and tested approach which has been in operation since 1998.
“Without Linking Lives, the paperwork alone would have taken a year to write and put together. As a result of our partnership with Linking Lives, we are at an amazing starting point to reach and support isolated older people in our community”.
– Coordinator (Leicester Western Ward Linking Lives)
Be a part of our story
Find out how you or your church can set up and run a visiting project in your community by getting in touch with us by call or text or even our social media!