Loneliness costs lives. It is linked to a range of chronic conditions including high blood pressure and depression, and more than doubles the risk of developing dementia.
On average, 10 per cent of the population aged over 65 is chronically lonely.
This is national befriending week and Food Train Friends are promoting befriending for older people.
A Food Train Friends spokesperson said: “We offer companionship through home visits,telephone befriending or group outings. It only costs £13 a year to become a member and anyone over 65 can join. This year the national campaign will focus on volunteers and how much they gain from their befriending.
“We urgently need more volunteers in DG8 and DG9 postcode areas. You will find a hugely rewarding (and fun) experience: all of our befriender have stories of what they get back in return for a couple of hours a week. You will receive free support, training, and out of pocket expenses. If you are interested in people and helping to reduce loneliness, get in touch on 01671 401346. Check us out on www.facebook.com/FoodTrainDumfriesGalloway. #befriendersbeatloneliness”