The most wonderful time of the year can unfortunately feel the complete opposite for people experiencing loneliness.
The issue is strikingly demonstrated by a TV advert released by Age UK last week. In the short video, an older man goes about his routine, his only interaction with another person day after day being his trip to his local supermarket. One day he finds the car park deserted and the local shop closed. He doesn’t realise it is Christmas Day until he heads home and sees neighbours welcoming their relatives while he watches on from the outside.
According to the charity, more than a million elderly people are chronically lonely. Age UK is using the powerful Christmas campaign to encourage people to donate so that they can do more to tackle isolation.
Unless we take action, it’s a problem that only stands to get worse as we are all living longer lives and it becomes more common for families to disperse across the country.
At Brio, we are committed to tackling the issue too, which is why shared experiences and staying active are at the heart of all our retirement villages.
We firmly believe that nobody should have to feel lonely, at any time of year, which is why we’ve put a community hub at the centre of each of our developments.
These are spaces where residents can meet others and share experiences with our organised events which are tailored to the needs and interests of each village.
Our first development at Chapelton in Aberdeenshire will offer an extensive choice of activities that will be tailored to the community. They will include keep fit, supper clubs, arts and crafts, days out and games clubs.
We will also keep residents connected with family and friends by providing smart technology in every home. This will provide quick and reliable communication both externally and to our on-site support teams.
Christmas should be a time of celebration that we want all our residents to look forward to. As well as festive events and activities, residents will be invited to spend Christmas day together ensuring that nobody is alone.
By next Christmas the first residents will have moved into their homes in Chapelton and we’re already looking forward to meeting them.