Being Alone at Christmas Doesn’t Have to be Lonely
Christmas is a time for friends and families to get together, but it can also be a lonely time for many, especially the older members of our community. Over 40% of single-person households are occupied by someone over the age of 65, and according to a survey[i] by Lifeline Australia, eight out of ten Australians reported feeling lonely.
While being alone at Christmas may be a reality for many, it doesn’t have to be, according to Cranbrook at Home’s Business Manager Tanya Austin.
“Many older people find themselves alone or isolated at Christmas. This may be because family live elsewhere, or a spouse has passed away. It can also be because some may not have a family or social support networks are limited. However, there are things we can all do to help make a difference and alleviate feelings of loneliness for others during the holidays, said Ms Austin
“While most of us are fortunate to be spending time with family and friends over Christmas, we can all do something to help connect with those who are lonely or isolated,” she added.
Ms Austin recommends the following ways to connect with older member of the community:
- Visit an older neighbour – if you know someone who lives alone, drop in for a cup of tea. Let them know you are thinking about them, and if they have limited mobility, offer to help with Christmas decorating;;
- Invite someone you know who is alone to lunch on Christmas Day – eating alone on the best of days can be hard, let alone at Christmas. If you have an extra place at your table, invite someone over to share a meal;
- Suggest connections with a local charity that offers social engagement;
- Pay it forward and volunteer with a local charity;
- Use technology to connect – a simple text message, call, or email may make a world of difference to someone on their own.
To learn more about Cranbrook at Home’s services click here.