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PPM Partnership with Age UK West Cumbria in the South Lakes

PPM are working in partnership with Age UK West Cumbria to signpost people aged 50 + to the services that the charity provides in Millom and surrounding areas to try and help prevent loneliness and social isolation in the communities that we work within.

Loneliness and social isolation are harmful to our health: research shows that lacking social connections is as damaging to our health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day (Holt-Lunstad, 2015). Social networks and friendships not only have an impact on reducing the risk of mortality or developing certain diseases, but they also help individuals to recover when they do fall ill (Marmot, 2010).

Age UK West Cumbria’s Community Connections project offers support to people who are feeling lonely or isolated and would like some help to boost their confidence and get out and about more.

They offer support with:

• Support for groups to involve new people
• Support to set up new groups
• A volunteer to accompany someone to activities until they feel confident to go alone or meet up with someone in the group
• Information on activities in the local area
• Finding volunteer opportunities
• Individual / telephone befriending

The Community Connections Project can also link people to a range of other Age UK West Cumbria services to help them lead active independent lives in their own homes and communities.

These include:

• General information and advice
• Advice on benefits, household finances, housing and care options
• Help at home; Handyperson service; House removals
• Daily Living & Mobility Aids & Equipment
• Social activities and opportunities
• Supported activities in day centres and the community
• Support for hospital discharge
• Support for people with dementia
• Nailcutting service

Linda Chapples is the local Community Connector based at the Age UK resource centre in Millom, The Bradbury Centre. Linda has met with staff from our South Lakes depot in Millom and educated them on the services offered by Age UK West Cumbria in the area, in the hope that our operatives can signpost any customers they come into contact with whom they feel could benefit from the services.

Our PPM operatives are the first point of contact with many customers living in local housing association properties and can often recognise when somebody may be lonely or require support from local charities like Age UK West Cumbria. Home Group, one of our main clients in the South Lakes area, have been very supportive of this partnership.

Linda said "It was a pleasure to meet PPM staff to share information about our project.  We very much welcome the opportunity to develop our partenrship work with PPM Ltd as this further demonstrates how community based agencies can 'work together to tackle loneliness' "

To find out more about Age UK West Cumbria and their services please click HERE

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