Care home group aims to combat loneliness amongst the elderly with new ‘Adopt a Grandparent’ campaign
With the number of 85-year-old’s in the UK expected to double by 2026, there is an increasing number of headlines around the potentially devastating impact of loneliness on the health and wellbeing of older people.
In May, research by Age UK revealed that within the next 20 years, the number of individuals with complex care needs is projected to increase, while last year, the charity reported that almost 1,000 elderly people a day were being needlessly admitted to hospital.
According to recent headlines alone, patients who are lonely are three times more likely to suffer from anxiety or depression. Other studies have linked loneliness with an increased risk of developing coronary heart disease, as well as a number of other health conditions. The Royal Voluntary Service (RVS) also found that one in five of those over 70 eat all their daily meals alone, rising to over a quarter of people over 80.
In order to combat loneliness amongst older people, award-winning care home group, CHD Living, has launched its new ‘Adopt a Grandparent’ campaign in order to raise awareness of the epidemic and improve the quality of life older people during a time of life that can often feel lonely and isolated.
The campaign will see CHD Living pair elderly residents from across their homes, and people who use their Longdene Homecare services, with local people who may not have, or see, their own grandparents, but who appreciate the value and importance of maintaining intergenerational relationships.
Shaleeza Ladak, head of hospitality and communications at CHD Living, is the daughter of the group’s founders and grew up in Brownscombe Cottage, on the site of their first acquisition, Brownscombe House Nursing Home, in Haslemere, Surrey.
She said: “Growing up, I spent so much time at Brownscombe House, interacting with the wonderful residents there – I had about 15 adopted grandparents of my own. Even as I got older, the benefits of those relationships for both myself and the older people were apparent. It gave everyone so much joy.
“Loneliness is a wide-spread concern among older people in this country and it is an unfortunate fact of life that some of our residents either have no family or no family that lives close enough to visit regularly. We are hoping that this campaign will give people the opportunity to interact with new faces, make new friends and really flourish thanks to these new connections.”
The campaign is open to anyone willing to commit their time. Applicants will be asked to provide information on their interests, hobbies and details of why they would like to be involved in the programme. This information will be used to match them with a suitable resident. Once matched, participants will be encouraged to regularly call and/or visit their adopted grandparent regularly.
For more information, please visit https://chdliving.co.uk/adopt-grandparent
Pictured here, three of CHD Living’s portfolio.