Join The Star’s campaign to connect Sheffield residents with older people desperate for a chat

The Star is launching a new campaign to connect the growing number of isolated older people in Sheffield with thoughtful individuals who can offer their time for a chat on the phone.

Tuesday, 2nd February 2021, 7:00 am

Simply knowing someone is there at the end of the phone, or due to call, a couple of times a week can make a huge difference to those who are lonely, vulnerable or isolated during the current pandemic.

However, organisations such as Sheffield Churches Council for Community Care (SCCCC) are experiencing a shortage of volunteers to conduct these vitals calls – with almost 100 people currently on their waiting list for telephone support but not enough buddies to help them.

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The Star is launching a Buddy Up! campaign to encourage more people to sign up as befrienders and bring vital support to isolated older people in the city.

To combat this, The Star has launched the ‘Buddy Up!’ campaign in the search for volunteers to spare up to an hour a week to give them the friendship and belonging they crave.

Tammy Wilson, SCCCC Good Neighbour Scheme Team Leader, said: “The urgency is even greater now that a fresh lockdown has been imposed, with older people cut off once more from the outside world. Even just giving an hour of your time up to once a week could make a massive difference to the life of an older person in your community.”

Sadly, the charity says the city’s loneliness epidemic will only get worse as thousands of over 65’s face yet more time in lockdown, often with no friends or family they can call upon for support.

If you feel you can offer your spare time to those in need email [email protected] and mark your message for the ‘Buddy Up!’ campaign.

The Star has launched a Buddy Up! campaign to encourage more people to sign up and volunteer as befrienders to help elderly and isolated people

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a digital subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Nancy Fielder, editor.