Loneliness

“Loneliness is a hot topic. There’s no questioning the significant negative social, health and economic hurt caused by ‘the loneliness epidemic,’ and many community leaders and third-sector organisations are calling for greater acknowledgement of this social issue, and investment in initiatives to tackle loneliness. But a question that isn’t asked as often is, do we actually know how to effectively tackle loneliness?”

In the Village

Are our approaches to tackling this issue fundamentally flawed?

Loneliness is a hot topic. There’s no questioning the significant negative social, health and economic hurt caused by ‘the loneliness epidemic,’ and many community leaders and third-sector organisations are calling for greater acknowledgement of this social issue, and investment in initiatives to tackle loneliness. But a question that isn’t asked as often is, do we actually know how to effectively tackle loneliness?

A seemingly logical assumption

Charitable and community organisations have been ‘helping the lonely’ for centuries. And in some ways, the lonely soul persona hasn’t changed all that much, portrayed in shades of blue and grey, sitting alone, shoulders hunched, slumped slightly forward, sitting alone in the shadows. The solution is presented as the warm, friendly face with the helping hands and charitable spirit bathed in sunshine, showing up at the shadowy doorstep to reach out the hand and pull…

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