National Lottery-funded charity, Age UK Gateshead, responded swiftly to the needs of those isolated at home, with dedicated staff undertaking food deliveries, collection of pensions and friendly visits to keep people’s spirits up.
The local team have increased proactive welfare calls from 100 to around 3,800 every week in a bid to tackle social isolation and loneliness during the quarantine. Outgoing and incoming calls combined have amassed to over 10,000 per week, up from their average of around 650 before the lockdown.
Age UK Gateshead’s hard-working staff also continue to offer vital visits for people with dementia and those with serious mental health issues. Trained healthcare staff are making over 323 hours of combined visits per week, comforting older members of the community or just simply providing conversation to those experiencing anxiety or depression due to lack of contact with loved ones, friends and family.
Ian Wolstenholme, Age UK Gateshead CEO, said:
“In the current public health crisis Age UK Gateshead is changing and supporting a phenomenal amount of people’s lives. However, we do not do this alone and none of it would be possible without the ongoing support of our partner charities, community and The National Lottery. We recognise together we are stronger and National Lottery players have allowed us to create a caring society in a time of crisis.
“It’s the smallest gestures that make the biggest impact, and together we make a difference.”