New Group for Elderly in Sutton.

September 24, 2010 11:20 AM

On Sunday 19th September 'Contact the Elderly' launched their first group in the borough of Sutton. This is a cause that is supported by Carshalton and Wallington MP Tom Brake, who helped them to launch the group. 'Contact the Elderly' provides a monthly social get-together for a small group of socially isolated people over the age of 75.

'Contact the Elderly' is a National Charity, and their new group in Sutton is for local residents over 75 who live on their own. Once a month, volunteers with cars will pick up a group of 8-10 older people and take them to the home of a volunteer host where they will all spend an afternoon together.

"The older people we help are often very lonely", says Cliff Rich, South London Development Officer for 'Contact the Elderly', "Like Constance, who is 89 and a member of one of our groups. She lives alone; it is the same house she was born and brought up in together with her 6 siblings, and where she lived with her husband, who died 30 years ago."

"Her eyesight has deteriorated so much that she cannot go out on her own. So instead she sits at home most days in her comfortable chair and listens to audio books, but she has no one to talk to about the book she has just finished, and no one to share her thoughts with. However with 'Contact the Elderly' she now has friends who live near her who call her and whom she meets up with on a regular basis."

Tom said of the new group, 'I was very pleased to be able to help 'Contact the Elderly' set up such a great project. The social get-togethers are so valuable for socially isolated older people and offer them a chance to engage with their local community. The group relies on the goodwill of volunteers to drive the guests to the tea parties or host a party in their own home. Volunteers only have to commit to helping out one Sunday a month or by hosting a tea party once or twice a year.'

Cliff continues: 'We are delighted that Tom Brake MP has supported us to launch a new group in Sutton. The group started fairly small and we still have spaces for more older people over the age of 75 to join us. Thousands of older people go for weeks without seeing any family or friends - in Sutton there are over 6,800 people over 75 living on their own, and around 20% of these see their family and friends less than once a week - so it is wonderful we are able to offer some of those who are particularly lonely something to look forward to.'

If you would like more information about joining the new local group in Sutton, please contact Cliff Rich on 020 8675 3030 or see our website for more information www.contact-the-elderly.org.uk

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