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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

Elderly feel more isolated on bank holidays

This news post is about 6 years old

A helpline for OAPs who are feeling lonely has reported a surge in calls during March

A helpline which supports the elderly has reported a surge in calls.

The Silver Line helps the elderly through periods of isolation or loneliness, and has reported that last month was its busiest ever.

The charity handled 48,070 calls in March – a 24% increase year on year, driven by high call volumes during Easter weekend and the spell of bad weather. The vast majority of callers (80%) were contacting the charity for the first time.

The number of incoming calls on Easter Sunday surpassed those received during peak days over the Christmas and new year period, with 1829 calls received on Sunday 1 April (vs a high of 1773 on New Year's Day, and 1474 on Christmas Day).

Sophie Andrews, chief executive of The Silver Line said: "We know that for our callers, bank holidays throughout the year seem interminably long and lonely, they often describe them as a month of Sundays. When combined with holiday occasions traditionally focused on celebrating with loved ones, it can be even more challenging for them.

“We also frequently heard from those calling between Good Friday and Easter Monday that their family and friends had gone away for the long weekend, leaving them home-alone.”

The helpline can be contacted 24/7 on 0800 4 70 80 90.