20 July 2015
The Co-operative Group and the British Red Cross have today (20 July), launched a partnership to help tackle social isolation and loneliness across the UK.
The Co-operative, which has over 70,000 staff and 8 million members across the UK, aims to raise funds over the next two years through a variety of local and national fundraising activities.
Money raised by The Co-operative from its communities across the UK will assist the Red Cross in providing vital care and support for thousands of isolated and lonely people, helping them reconnect with those communities and bringing them life-changing care in their homes.
In the UK today more than 3.7 million people over the age of 65 are thought to live alone.
A third of British citizens over the age of 65 say they have no one to turn to and a large proportion of those aged under 25 also feel disconnected from the people around them.
Loneliness affects everyone from new mums to retired men, teenagers, those in work, unemployed and recently retired people, the well and unwell.
The Co-operative Group chief executive, Richard Pennycook said: “This is what the Co-operative difference is all about.
"We are standing up for what matters to our members and colleagues so that we can campaign for change and a better society.
"Loneliness is indiscriminate, it’s not just about older generations, it can affect anyone at any stage of their life and regardless of circumstances.
"We can use the presence we have in over 3,750 communities in the UK to help tackle this at a local level with our colleagues and members.
"We also look forward to working with our new charity partner, the British Red Cross, to address this issue.
Mike Adamson, British Red Cross chief executive, said: “We are all absolutely delighted to become the new charity partner of The Co-operative Group.
"It is such an incredible opportunity which will undoubtedly help us to transform the lives of thousands of people living in our communities.
"No-one should be suffering alone, and a partnership with The Co operative Group will help us to reach thousands of vulnerable people.