A NEW £15,000 fund to fight loneliness and isolation in Sussex has been launched by a national charity.
The Friends of the Elderly Fund will be co-ordinated by the Sussex Community Foundation, with the aim of supporting charities and community groups helping older people.
Applications to receive funding are currently being accepted and assessed, with a view to grants being awarded early next year.
Activities the fund will support include befriending, social groups, lunch clubs and outings, and grants for these will range from £250 to £2,500.
Sussex was chosen for the fund following Friends of the Elderly’s Be a Friend campaign pilot in the county last year.
The campaign combats loneliness in the older population by encouraging people to get to know their older neighbours and members of their community.
Jo O’Boyle, director of engagement at Friends of the Elderly, said: “Following our Be a Friend pilot in Sussex last year it was clear that there are already lots of brilliant groups aiming to combat loneliness in the county.
“One clear setback these groups are experiencing is the lack of funds to support their much-needed activities. We hope that this fund will allow some of these groups and projects to flourish to reach even more older people affected by loneliness in Sussex.”
Applications for the fund are being accepted until January 15, 2016. Visit www.sussexgiving.org.uk for more information.
Kevin Richmond, chief executive of Sussex Community Foundation, said: “Sussex Community Foundation has given over 400 grants worth a total of almost £750,000 to groups supporting older people in Sussex over the last ten years.
“We are delighted to be working with Friends of the Elderly and I hope our work will result in many older people feeling less lonely and isolated in the future.”
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