Ria sadly lost her husband, Robert, six years ago.

Now, Alice, an Independent Age volunteer, visits her every Friday.

"To me, Alice is a lifeline. Someone to have a natter and a laugh with."


Alice started visiting Ria just before Christmas and her big smile makes a big difference to Ria.

"We talk about Alice's family and her pets and I've been able to talk to her about Robert, which is wonderful."

In the UK, 3.64 million people over the age of 65 live alone and Christmas can be the loneliest time of year for many of them. Especially if, like Ria, they are dealing with the loss of a loved one.

But, there is a way to light up an older person's Christmas with friendship and support. By giving a regular gift to Independent Age, you can help fund friendship visits to more lonely older people by fully trained Independent Age volunteers.