ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age happily and securely at home, is urgently seeking volunteers for support and befriending services in a number of areas of Limerick.
Volunteers are asked to give just an hour a week to bring friendship to the life of an older person near them.
Since the Covid-19 pandemic, research has shown that older people are experiencing higher levels of loneliness. Demand for ALONE’s services is higher than ever before, and in some hotspot areas the organisation is urgently in need of volunteers.
In Limerick, volunteers are needed particularly in Kilfinane, Foynes, Rathkeale, Granagh, Patrickswell, Kilmallock, Pallaskenny, Shannagolden, Askeaton, Athea, and Herbertstown.
Loneliness impacts the lives of thousands of older people across Ireland every day and can have serious long-term impacts on both mental and physical health. Last year, ALONE volunteers gave 121,588 hours of valued support to older people nationwide.
ALONE campaigns nationally to combat loneliness and social isolation as a member of the Loneliness Taskforce. The Taskforce is looking for actions to be taken at Government level, including a national plan aimed at addressing loneliness across the life course; for a Government minister to lead on addressing loneliness; the establishment of a €5 million loneliness fund; and a nationwide public awareness campaign.
ALONE’s Support & Befriending service provides companionship and practical support to older people who would like or need it. The service also provides assistance to solve everyday problems, and links the older person in with local events and activities. ALONE Volunteers provide Support and Befriending through regular visits to an older person, or daily/weekly telephone contact.