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Over 64 million minutes pledged to help end loneliness

A survey by Good Morning Britain has found that more than half of Brits felt lonely after losing someone they were close to, a third said such a loss had had a detrimental effect on their mental health - we wanted to change that.

Good Morning Britain has been encouraging everyone to get involved in our 1 Million Minutes campaign to help lonely people in the UK. We asked the nation to pledge time to help people who have lost a loved one and reach out in support of those who are lonely.

Thanks for pledging your time

Partnering with three charities - Cruse Bereavement Care, Contact the Elderly and Grief Encounter - our aim is to end loneliness in the UK .

An hour of company over the Christmas period could make a real difference to someone who has lost a loved one or is alone. Pledging an hour a week could help a neighbour get essentials from the shops.

How your pledges have helped

Our campaign has now wrapped up, but there are still ways you can help end loneliness.

Saying you'll help for 60 minutesIn that time you could make a phone call or pop round and see someone who you know has been bereaved and will be missing someone this Christmas. It could be anyone, an older relative, friend or an older neighbour. Is there someone in your local community who you know is on their own? Why not take them out for a festive treat. How about for a coffee and a mince pie, listen to some carol singers or to a festive fayre.

You could volunteer to visit the Grief Encounter offices and help to send out their unique ‘Grief Relief Kits’ to children in the UK who have lost a parent or sibling.

Helping for 60 minutes a week

Christmas is a particularly poignant time for people who have been bereaved. But every day of the week someone is calling the CruseHelpline for help. Why not become a National Helpline Volunteer in their Richmond, Surrey offices.

Volunteering for 120 minutes a week You could pledge to do some shopping or take out an elderly neighbour or friend. How about pledging to help out a parent with their children who has suffered bereavement? Or you could pledge to phone a member of your own family who has been bereaved.

Pledging 120 minutes a monthYou could help to introduce friendship back into the lives of socially isolated older people. As a volunteer with Contact the Elderly you will help set up monthly tea parties by liaising with hosts and drivers so that everyone is clear about dates, timings and venues.

Volunteer to help out at bi-monthly Grief Encounter craft workshops with children aged from 4-12 years old who have lost a parent or sibling. The workshops focus on anything from memory making to expression through Movement workshops.

Become a Cruse “More than Words” volunteerand help to arrange peer-led support groups for people in their local community that are feeling lonely and isolated.

180 minutes a monthYou could attend one of Grief Encounter's Family Fun Days. Taking the whole family for a fun day after the loss of a family member. Making new fun memories as a family helps create a ‘new normal’ that is so important in moving forward after a bereavement.

Become a Volunteer driver and help transport older people to a monthly a Contact the Elderlytea party. You will offer companionship to older people by picking them up, driving them and accompanying them to the tea party and returning them home safely.

Become a tea party host for Contact the Elderly. Welcome a small group of older people and their volunteer drivers into your home for a Contact the Elderly tea twice a year or more if you like.

One day a weekPledge to take someone you know who is lonely or bereaved out for the day trip

So what are you waiting for? Make a new year's resolution to help someone who is lonely in 2018 and 2019.

About the organisations we worked with

For this year's campaign, Good Morning Britain partnered with three organisations for 1 Million Minutes.

Cruse Bereavement Care is the largest national charity for bereaved people in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Cruse offers support, advice and information to children, young people and adults when someone dies and works to enhance societies care of bereaved people. Cruse offers face-to-face, telephone and website support. It has a free National Helpline (0808 808 1677) local services and a website specifically for children and young people called Hope Again. Its services are provided by trained volunteers and are confidential and free.

Contact the Elderly has been working for over 50 years to tackle loneliness and isolation amongst older people. It works with people who are mostly in their 80s and 90s, who live alone, and whose diminished mobility makes it impossible for them to maintain regular social contact. Its groups meet on Sundays when many other services aren’t available.

Grief Encounter is the UK’s leading open-access childhood bereavement charity, providing pioneering and professional support to bereaved children and young people following the death of a loved one. With a unique Family Programme, it looks after children aged 3 - 19 years of age, and their families, to help navigate their grief journey. As every family is different, it works to offer bespoke care to each and every young person it engages with.

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