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Neighbourhood Coordinators Set To Help Combat Loneliness

20th April 2017
News, Mansfield

Neighbourhood Coordinators Set To Help Combat Loneliness

Nottinghamshire residents experiencing loneliness and isolation in Ladybrook in Mansfield are being encouraged to get involved in a scheme that will help link them up with activities and social groups in their area.

The County Council’s ‘Age Friendly Nottinghamshire’ pilot project will initially cover the two areas to help make them better places for their residents of any age to become socially active in their communities.

The neighbourhood coordinators are working with voluntary groups and residents in these communities to help open up opportunities for people experiencing isolation to meet other people, improve confidence and find a renewed sense of purpose.

It was estimated that there were 53,000 older people living alone in Nottinghamshire in 2011 which is expected to rise to 74,000 by 2025, amounting to a forty percent increase.

The coordinators will work closely with frontline workers such as pharmacists, housing officers and supermarket staff to identify people at risk of loneliness.

They will also help communities set up projects such as health walks, casserole clubs and befriending scheme and train volunteers to identify and work with people at risk of isolation.

The aim of the pilot is to support people to maintain their independence, stay healthy and improve well-being alongside feeling less isolated and more engaged with society.

The posts are funded for a period of 18 months by the Better Care Fund, which aims to bring together health and social care services together to support people to live independently.

Rob Bryant and Steve Smith have been recruited into the posts and are currently working with independent living complexes in the Beeston area to identify people at risk of isolation.

They are also supporting community volunteers in Ladybrook to develop good neighbourhood schemes which may include a befriending scheme and a Sunday morning breakfast club at Ladybrook Community Centre.

Rob, who previously worked for a programme to improve social connections for local residents, said: “My previous work showed me loneliness and isolation can have a big impact on a person’s health and wellbeing, and research suggests lacking social connections is as damaging to health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day”

“Everyone is different so we will work with each person to find out what their interests are and put them in contact with local community groups or activities that best meet their needs and wishes.”

Steve has previously worked on many community projects. He said: “People often create barriers in their own minds and part of our job will be listening to their concerns and helping to reignite their impulse to act and make a change for the better.”

To get involved or find out more telephone 0115 977 4629, email or visit


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