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Lib Dems believe you do not have to be lonely just because you're getting older!

February 11, 2020 3:51 PM
Originally published by Liberal Democrats on Kent County Council

At this Thursday's budget meeting at Kent CC Ida Linfield (Lib Dem county councillor in Canterbury) is proposing the allocation of £250,000 to fund a Befriending service to support elderly residents in Kent. The funds would be drawn from a special £3.5 million unallocated reserve which KCC are proposing for future initiatives.

"As you get older it is all too easy to simply stay at home more and more and you stop wanting to go out - perhaps after a family bereavement or losing a much loved pet", says Ida. "This can lead to isolation which, in turn, is now recognised as a major cause of dementia. Ida Linfield

"I strongly believe there is too much emphasis placed on the use of the phone or internet when supporting older people. Phones aren't easy if you're losing your hearing and how many older people do you know who are computer savvy in their 80s?"

The new KCC face to face Befriending service would help prevent social isolation, highlight early signs of dementia and help residents stay safe in their own homes. "And it's nice to share a cup of tea!" added Ida.

In a rapidly ageing population the Befriending service needs to set up without delay. Liberal Democrats want it to be an ongoing service, not just a one off, which would lead the way in supporting older people.