BURTON Albion Community Trust is combatting loneliness with a series of initiatives that are proving a lifeline for participants.

Loneliness is a growing problem that has been exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic which has been keeping families and friends apart. People living alone have been especially hard hit by the lockdown and restrictions on socialising.

The EFL Trust’s Tackling Loneliness Together project aims to help and support people.

A recent study from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) showed that 2.6 million adults reported that they felt lonely ”often” or ”always” whilst 7.4 million adults reported their well-being had been affected through them having felt lonely in the past seven days.

The EFL Trust is receiving £810,000 from the Department of Digital Culture Media and Sport (DCMS) to support 32 EFL Club Community Organisations through the project in deprived locations. The new grants will allow expanded activities across the country under the campaign ‘Let’s Tackle Loneliness Together’.

Burton Albion Community Trust is one of the 32 club organisations taking part.

Lisa Beard, Community Operations Manager at BACT, said: “Our Tackling Loneliness Together programme is going really well. We are befriending people on a weekly basis with telephone calls, doing shopping, sending out activity packs and helping people to access the internet. We are also doing weekly physical activity sessions and two weekly ‘wellness walks’.

“We held a great information event recently from the Vera Goode Suite with Carlton Street Surgery who were carrying out annual flu vaccinations for their patients and the Tackling Loneliness Team were there to support them.

“We spoke to more than 500 people about the programme and gave out leaflets about how the community can get involved. We’re holding another event on Saturday, October 10. 

“Carlton Street Surgery were extremely grateful to Burton Albion Chairman Ben Robinson for letting them use the ground as they would have found it impossible to get through the 1,200 plus patients safely and quickly from their surgery.”