Cascade of kindness needed to battle county’s loneliness during coronavirus lockdown

Sally Fogden says people should be making an effort to stay in touch Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Sally Fogden says people should be making an effort to stay in touch Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN - Credit: Archant

Those behind one of the county’s biggest project’s to tackle loneliness are encouraging people to pick up the phone to help the most vulnerable during the coronavirus outbreak.

Usually the team behind the Rural Coffee Caravan would be out and about making sure that elderly people in the county were not isolated.

In the past few years the project has become well known for its work with the Meet Up Monday’s scheme which encourages people to gather together right across the county.

However, Government restrictions mean that the charity’s events are no longer able to take place.

The charity’s chairman, the Revd. Canon Sally Fogden, is now hoping that members of the community will continue to look out for each other by using an old idea in a new way; telephone trees.

“So many people are feeling quite miserable and it’s something people can do now,” said the Revd. Canon.

“They are all stuck in at home on their own.”

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The Revd. Canon hopes that people will either pick up the phone, send an email or even a postcard to a few people who then do the same to two more people.

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“It’s very simple, the idea is that it just makes people feel that someone cares about them and they can care about someone else,” said Revd Canon.

“Send a postcard or make one. It doesn’t have to be perfect. They can even send an email.

“We can use all these methods.”

While the idea may be simple the Revd. Canon believes it could make a real difference.

“People feel helpless but that’s something they can do,” said the Revd. Canon.

“If you can spread it out they just don’t feel isolated and they can pass it on.”

Read more: Kind-hearted volunteers delivering food to elderly during virus pandemic

Last year, the Revd. Canon was one of the first people to receive a Suffolk Medal for her philanthropic work.

Having received the medal, the Revd Canon. said she feels a duty to help others through this difficult time.

“We should be behind trying to think of these things to help people,” said the Revd Canon.

The Rural Coffee Caravan have also set up a Facebook page where people can share the small acts of kindness they have witnessed during the lockdown under the name Rural Coffee Caravan Cascade Of Kindness.

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