Volunteers needed in West Somerset for Contact the Elderly

This is The West Country: TEA parties can make the difference to an elderly person feeling alone. PHOTO: Submitted. TEA parties can make the difference to an elderly person feeling alone. PHOTO: Submitted.

A CHARITY dedicated to tackling loneliness and isolation among older people is appealing for volunteers living in Minehead and Exmoor to help out.

Contact the Elderly is looking for people to spare a few hours a month to help run its local tea parties.

The charity aims to relive the acute loneliness of isolated older people, aged 75 and above by organising free monthly Sunday afternoon tea parties for small groups within local communities.

Each older guest is collected from their home by a volunteer driver and is taken to a volunteer host’s home where they join a small group for tea, talk and companionship.

Coordinators, drivers and hosts are needed to get a group going in the Minehead/Exmoor area.

Coordinators would be responsible for looking after a group, organising the tea parties and liaising with the guests and volunteers.

These are needed most urgently and the role is ideal to share with a friend.

Drivers will collect a couple of elderly people in their car and take them for tea. Hosts will offer to hold a tea party once or twice a year, a downstairs toilet and easy access is required.

Contact the Elderly’s Somerset development officer Helen said: “The charity is committed to offering a lifeline of friendship to the oldest and loneliest people.

“I’m calling for anyone who is interested in giving something back to their community to get in touch with me.

“In addition, if you or someone you know would benefit from being invited as a guest, get in touch also.

“It is a simple yet very effective idea, and it gives our older guests the knowledge that someone really cares.

“Most importantly, it changes lives – maybe yours too.”

Minehead area residents interested in volunteering can contact Helen Ker on 01225-873812 or email Helen.ker@contact-the-elderly. org.uk

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