Connect over the festive period to help alleviate loneliness in Mendip
Christmas is undoubtedly going to look different this year. Many people may find themselves isolated, spending the festive period alone.
There are local organisations that offer support and help, and they've been pulled together and listed in the Mendip Health Connections Directory found on the Mendip District Council website here: www.mendip.gov.uk/healthandwellbeing
Mind in Mendip provides an emotional support and mental health helpline which is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Take a look at www.mind.org.uk
There is also the 'army' of Community and Village Agents who provide confidential, practical community-based solutions for you, wherever you are in Mendip. Visit ccslovesomerset.org/
Volunteering can be a great way to get out and meet people. SPARK Somerset provide information, advice, training and support to the voluntary and community sector in Somerset. They also run the Volunteer Service, inspiring people to get involved and make a difference in their communities. Full details here www.sparksomerset.org.uk/
Cllr. Helen Sprawson-White, Chair of Mendip District Council, said: "This time of year heightens feelings of loneliness because it is the time when families traditionally get together. The pandemic means that people's usual support networks and groups they belong to may have changed leaving them more alone.
"Never underestimate the power of small acts of kindness to others in your community. A phone call to find out how someone is feeling, whether they are warm, well and need anything can brighten a day."
Nationally, the Government has just announced a funding boost so that book clubs, walking groups and other community projects will be able to apply for a £4 million fund designed to help reduce loneliness in the coming months. Called the Local Connections Fund it is designed to help local organisations bring people and communities together as the country recovers from the coronavirus outbreak. Read the announcement here: www.gov.uk/government/news/community-groups-tackling-loneliness-to-benefit-from-4m-fund