Friendship is the most precious Christmas gift there is

My name is Janet and I’m 76 years old. For years I used to run a hotel with my husband. When he died I moved to a cottage in the South West, near to an animal rescue centre, that I started volunteering with.  

I love dogs and threw myself into my voluntary work. But, sadly, that all suddenly changed when I suffered a TIA similar to a stroke – that left me unable to carry on as before.

I was forced to give up my beloved volunteering, and was stuck indoors, sometimes going for days without speaking to a soul. 

I was referred to Independent Age’s Telephone Friendship Services to receive regular phone calls from one of their volunteers. I quickly found Tessa who was a perfect match for me – Tessa dog-sits for a living.

We started speaking over the phone and found we had lots to talk about. Three years on, we’re still good friends.

I have to say “Tessa rings and it’s absolutely wonderful… She’ll say, ‘I’m calling from such and such a place with four springer spaniels or whatever. We’ve got such a lot in common… She’s a godsend.”

I want to share my story with you to show how Independent Age has helped to transform my life.  

Please help Independent Age to provide training for more volunteers to give friendly social contact to older people who are desperate and alone. There are hundreds and thousands of older people in our communities who will face another lonely Christmas. That’s why I’m asking for your urgent help today.

Did you know?

  • It’s estimated that around half a million older people could be spending Christmas Day alone
  • Loneliness increases the risk of high blood pressure and cognitive decline
  • Lonely people are more prone to depression.

By giving a donation of £15 – you can help Independent Age to train more volunteers to provide a precious Christmas gift of friendship.

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