We’ve all been lonely at some time in our lives and know the fear, isolation and hopeless feelings experienced by it. It doesn’t matter whether we have people around us or not loneliness can creep in at any point.
For people who live alone or in difficult environments, loneliness can be amplified and feel very palpable.
I stumbled across Wavelength, a great charity in Hornchurch, Essex which has tackled loneliness for over 80 years. Starting by giving radios to people isolated by the World War through the decades evolving to include tvs, iPads and computers to all those in need from refugees, those leaving prison, young people, adults and families anyone already experiencing difficulty in their lives without the added burden of loneliness.
Their research of how people felt before contact with Wavelength and how they felt afterwards shows the massive impact they make. Working with ONS in the UK tracks the impact of loneliness and the cost in human and family lives as well as business, communities and the health service.
Wavelength reminded me of an interview with the inventor Trevor Bayliss who invented, amongst other things, a robust wind-up radio to be used in global, remote villages which not only tackled loneliness but also delivered information and healthcare.
The simplest ideas are often the most effective and enduring.
Long may WaveLength continue its excellent work.
If you know anyone who is lonely and would benefit from WaveLength’s support, don’t hesitate to signpost them Twitter @WaveLengthHelp or website: http://www.wavelength.org.uk