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Charity fighting isolation in older people calls for Waltham Forest volunteers

During the first four months of this year the number of people volunteering for Re-engage in the capital fell by nearly two-thirds

Credit: RDNE Stock Project via Canva

A charity that supports older people has experienced a collapse in volunteer recruitment in London in the last few months and is appealing for help from Waltham Forest residents.

During the first four months of this year the number of people volunteering for Re-engage in the capital fell by nearly two-thirds from over 1000 to just 380 compared to the same period in 2023.

Re-engage has said that older people are currently waiting to join one of the charity’s gentle activity groups based at the Higham’s Park Seventh Day Adventist Church, but it can’t go ahead until helpers have been recruited.

 Re-engage, which fights to reduce loneliness and isolation among those aged 75 and over, has set-up five venues in the capital for activity groups.

 Ed Nash, Engagement Team Manager at the charity said: “We don’t know why there has been a sudden dearth of volunteers in London but it’s causing us some concern.


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 “Our activity groups bring lonely older people together, allowing them to make friends, have a little fun, exercise gently and gives the opportunity to just get out of the house which, sadly, is a rarity for some of them.

 “We really hope volunteers will come forward to help us run these groups and provide a lifeline for many older people, especially now we have such fantastic venues.”

 Janet, 78, who attends one of the charity’s existing activity groups, said: “I have family but I was feeling isolated until I joined a group which really got me out in the world again. I enjoy the exercise but it’s also great to meet people of a similar age, to have a laugh, a chat and catch-up on things. Just socialising is so important.”  

Outside Waltham Forest, Re-engage is planning to run activity groups at; Eltham Palace, south London, Hampstead Court Care Home in Hampstead; Minterne Apartments in White City and with the Notting Hill Genesis Housing Association.

If you’d like to volunteer for Re-engage visit their website, or call 0207 240 0630


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