Earlier this year the British Red Cross supported Barbara in Paignton, Devon. She has mobility limitations that meant she could no longer leave the house. She had to give up work, her routine, and seeing friends and family. She completely lost her independence. This is why tackling loneliness and social isolation through our partnership with the Co-op is so important. Because people like Barbara are not alone.
People with cerebral palsy can remember when SCOPE was called The Spastic Society. Now we have a culture where political correctness has overtaken and one cannot use the term 'disabled' or 'mentally handicapped' or even 'handicapped'; instead we have to use the terms 'less-abled' or 'learning difficulties'. Is this really required
Just as it is cruel to deprive the elderly of food or medication, it is cruel to accept the current state of social isolation. We could ask why these lonely people's families are not more involved or go down the Chinese government route of 'forcing' people to visit their elderly parents but the reality is that people are naturally occupied with making a living and raising their own young.
Today, there is a paucity of our more tangible community galvanisers, such as gathering at church or community events, which could ameliorate the risk of social isolation. Perhaps, for the digital natives, social isolation need not be an issue as these physical gatherings are digitally dissolved by global online communities.