One in three older people in Ballymena feel they have no one to turn to for help and support, according to AGE NI.
Now the organisation’s Chief Executive, Linda Robinson, is urging people to look out for older family, friends and neighbours, particularly as wintry weather looks set to continue.
“No one should have no one!” said Linda. “Treacherous weather conditions, like the snow, wind and freezing temperatures we’re experiencing at the moment, can seriously increase feelings of loneliness among many older people as it poses a risk to both their physical and mental health and wellbeing. Poor weather can be a huge concern for older people as it often prevents family or friends from visiting and stops people getting out of the house.
“Having someone to turn to is important to us all. We all face ups and downs and it’s extremely important for everyone, no matter what age, to have someone to talk to.
“Our research shows that thousands of older people are facing later life alone. This means they have no one close to them to share the good times, or the bad, and no trusted confidante to turn to for advice if they’ve a problem or concern.
“That’s why Age NI is asking people to be a good neighbour or friend to older people they know, as no one should have no one in our society today. Together we can make sure that every older person has someone to go to for help, support, or for a chat and to help make later life better.”
If you or someone you know needs support in later life, freephone the Age NI Advice Service on 0808 808 7575. Lines are open 365 days a year from 8am – 7pm.