While many of us are enjoying the festive season with our loved ones, family and friends, there are many elderly people in the UK (and certainly in other parts of the world) who are going through the festive season alone. According to data from AgeUK, half of all people aged 75 or above live alone, and 1 in 10 people aged 65 or above say they are always or often feel lonely – that’s just over a million people!
There are some more emotional videos on AgeUK Youtube channels too. For example the Janet's story and the Roy's story:
So what can we do about it? Certainly we strongly encourage you to visit the AgeUK website and see what you can do to help. At Lxpert, we have been doing our bit to help too:
At Lxpert, our mission is to help people get the most from technology. We believe that technology can help solve this problem. We believe that helping elderly people to gain basic digital skills is very important. Not only because they can go online and do their shopping or access government services, but also they can get in touch with their friends & family, discover and reconnect with long lost friends & family and engage with local interest groups e.g. book clubs, gardening clubs and knitting clubs etc. These activities help them to stay stimulated, connected and active, so that they can live a longer, healthier and enjoyable life.
Since July 2015, we have partnered with AgeUK Suffolk to offer elderly people free computer advice and support at the local AgeUK help centre in Ipswich. Together we have been helping elderly people to gain basic digital skills and to resolve their computer issues every week. To-date, we have run 65 sessions and have helped 206 visitors on a 1-to-1 basis. In addition, we have raised £366.2 donations for AgeUK. Certainly we are still a long way from fixing this problem, but all the efforts we have put in will take us closer to the end goal.
Luckily we are not alone in this challenge. There are many great organisations such as the Tinder Foundation, DotEveryone, UK Online Centres, Go On Local and many more that are at the forefront of helping people gain basic digital skills. Together we can solve this issue sooner. Furthermore, it has been shown that every £1 invested in helping people gain digital skills, it is worth £10 to the economy!
Looking ahead in 2017, we will continue to offer the free computer advice and support service and we are planning to roll this out to other parts of the country with AgeUK. In the meantime, our brainy people are continuing developing new initiatives to help more people gain basic digital skills and overcome technophobia. We are all very excited!
Hopefully, in the near future, we can finally say everyone has someone at Christmas.
In the meantime, on behalf of the Lxpert team and the Lxpert community, I wish you a very merry Christmas and a great new year!
Founder and CEO
Images and video are from AgeUK website.
First Published on 24/12/2015
Last updated on 21/12/2016
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