Contact the Elderly is an organisation with more than 130 groups in Scotland tackling the issue of loneliness through tea, cake and company. Supported by a network of volunteers, Contact the Elderly organises monthly Sunday afternoon tea parties for small groups of older people aged 70 and over who are dealing with loneliness and social isolation. Our tea parties offer social contact, friendship and fun and fulfil a great need in the community. This can be true for the volunteers as well as the guests. The parties bring together people of all ages, encourage new friendships and support networks, and give everyone involved something to look forward to each month. It makes it possible for those with diminished mobility to maintain regular social contact. It gives everyone something to look forward to.
Lorna Dunbar, Support Officer at Contact the Elderly, said: “Our local groups are very popular and have made such a difference to the lives of the older people who attend. Our volunteers also have a great time and have made real and lasting friendships through the tea parties. Such a small, and mutually beneficial, act of kindness has an immeasurable impact in tackling social isolation among the local older community. Our groups are thriving with new ones launched in Stirling and Clackmannan as well as Dunblane.
Do you know someone who would benefit from coming along to one of our tea parties? Please get in touch and let us know!
Would you be interested in volunteering for us? Volunteer drivers collect one or two older people one Sunday afternoon a month and join them for the tea party before taking them safely home. Volunteer hosts will welcome a group of between eight to 10 people into their home once or twice a year, providing tea, sandwiches, cake and, most importantly, a warm atmosphere. Hosts’ homes must have no more than a few steps to enter and a downstairs toilet. The charity also has a pool of reserve drivers and each group requires a coordinator who communicates with the rest of the group on each month’s arrangements.