Loneliness and social isolation affect over 9 million people of all ages across the UK and can be as harmful as smoking and obesity. Yet in 2015, loneliness was the least popular CSR issue among UK businesses, and mainly associated with old age.
1 in 3 Co-op customers and members reported knowing someone who is lonely in their community, whilst British Red Cross’ staff and volunteers found worrying levels of loneliness and social isolation in people using its health and social care services. United by insight into these serious issues, in 2015 Co-op and British Red Cross partnered to challenge common perceptions, and expose and tackle the widespread impacts of loneliness.
Eighteen months into a two year partnership, Co-op and British Red Cross have beaten their fundraising target, establishing a lasting impact for people experiencing loneliness. Together we have:
•Raised over £4m
•Produced ground-breaking research into how loneliness can affect all ages
•Announced new services to support 12,500 adults of all ages
•Reached 55% of adults through media and social coverage to promote findings
•Together we joined the Jo Cox Commission to drive policy change and raise awareness of loneliness with 13 other leading organisations