In an effort to combat loneliness and isolation, Oldham Athletic Community Trust (OACT) are launching a new initiative titled ‘Never Alone’.
As we enter a period of national lockdown and the tightening of restrictions, we want to send the message to elderly members of the community that they are not alone and help them to get through these difficult times with a show of support. Over long periods, loneliness can increase the risk of mental health issues such as depression and anxiety.
As a result, in order to tackle this issue OACT are initially distributing 100 activity packs which will be prioritised for elderly members of the community.
The packs will contain:
- Puzzle books and pens.
- A letter of support from Latics Head Coach Harry Kewell.
- Letters of encouragement from pupils who attend some of our partner secondary schools.
And even more to be confirmed!
Through our ‘Never Alone’ initiative, we hope to provide some older members of the community with some companionship and activities to pass the time and also provide pupils with a sense of community spirit.
The pupil’s letters will let the elderly residents know that they are not alone, tell them how the pupils themselves have coped with lockdown and ask the residents about their lives both before and during the pandemic.
We hope to convey the message that no one should have to face these difficult times alone, and that we are all thinking of those members of the community who may be feeling lonely until we are able to return to a sense of normality.
Holly Grimes, NCS (National Citizen Service) Manager, commented: "Now more than ever with the coronavirus pandemic, social action is hugely important to make sure no members of the community feel isolated and alone.
"Through our ‘Never Alone’ initiative, we hope to provide some older members of the community with some companionship and activities to pass the time and also provide pupils with a sense of community spirit which we hope will encourage them to think about how else they can volunteer to help their local community in Oldham.
"For pupils in Year 10 and 11 who will soon be eligible to take part in our NCS programme, writing these letters is a great taster of the type of activities they can get involved with on NCS as part of their social action projects and we hope this might encourage them to get involved with the programme so that they can keep having a positive impact in their community.
"It’s been great to see how much interest we’ve had from schools so far, and I can’t wait to see where this initiative can go."
If your school would be interested in taking part in this initiative by writing letters, or if your residential care home would like to receive these activity packs. Please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on NCS and how to get involved, please contact email@example.com