Older people's helplines
Use our helplines to find more information and advice on older people
Find out how to volunteer in your local community and give your time to help others. Our mission is to bring people together to help solve society’s problems through voluntary and civic action. Whether it’s through volunteering or choosing a career for community benefit, we want to make it easy for people to connect, share, learn and grow and in doing so provide a world class service that is able to extend the capacity of civil society.
RVS (Royal Voluntary Service)
Call: 0845 608 0122
Royal Voluntary Service is a volunteer organisation that enriches the lives of older people and their families across Britain. We support older people by giving time and practical help to help them get the best from life. Our volunteers – ordinary men and women of all ages and ethnicities – love spending time with the older people. Through them, we want to help create a society where everyone feels valued and involved whatever their age. We believe old age should be celebrated, and so we should: we’re 75 years old this year and still going strong. So, find out today what we can do for you or an older person in your family.
Independent Age (Advice and Support for Older Age)
Advice line: 0800 319 6789
Founded 150 years ago, we are an established voice for older people, providing the ‘ABC’ of advice, befriending and campaigning. Our free advice service offers unrivalled expertise on social care and welfare benefits, and particularly on complex issues such as social care funding. Our range of detailed and in depth guides and factsheets provide information on the most common issues faced by older people, their families and carers. Our Wise Guides provide practical, accessible advice and information for the over-65s on finances, staying independent and getting the most out of later life and our befriending and practical support services provide crucial companionship, comfort and security for as long as it's needed - if necessary, for life.
Helpline: 0800 169 2081
We believe that age needs respect. It needs kindness. Sometimes it needs help. Because there is strength in numbers, Age Concern and Help the Aged have joined forces to become Age UK – so that we can be here for everyone in later life. Age UK aims to improve later life for everyone through our information and advice, services, campaigns, products, training and research.
Contact the Elderly
Call Freephone: 0800 716543
Contact the Elderly is the only national charity solely dedicated to tackling loneliness and social isolation among older people. We aim to do this by organising monthly Sunday afternoon tea parties for small groups of older people (aged 75+) who live alone, and volunteers within their local community, offering a regular and vital friendship link every month. Each older person is collected from their home by a volunteer driver and taken to a volunteer host’s home for the afternoon. The group is warmly welcomed by a different host each month, but the drivers remain the same which means that over the months and years, acquaintances turn into friends and loneliness is replaced by companionship. Our tea parties are a real lifeline of friendship for our older members who have little or no contact with any family or friends. They bring people of all ages together, develop fulfilling friendships and support networks, and give everyone involved something to look forward to each month.
Community Network is a charity and social enterprise combating social isolation and loneliness and their devastating effects on health and well-being. We do this by bringing people together on the phone to form Telephone Communities. Our Telephone Communities give people the chance to socialise, share experiences and support each other. And, because ‘meetings’ take place on the phone, they are easy to use and access – even for people who have mobility problems or a disability. Telephone Community groups are great fun for anyone who wants to talk to other people. More importantly, they can make a real difference to people who are lonely or socially isolated. We involve and train volunteers to run our groups, as well as facilitating groups commissioned by other organisations, such as health charities.
British Red Cross – Connecting Communities
Feeling lonely? Contact us on 0300 456 1155 (Mon to Fri, 9.30-5)
Our brand-new connecting communities service offers up to three months of support to suit you.
We help people feel better connected and enjoy the benefits of being more involved in their local community. You’ll be paired up with one of our local team members. Together you will rediscover your interests, rebuild your independence and find new friends. Our services are delivered by our skilled and dedicated volunteers and staff. They can draw on decades of experience in helping people to live independently and confidently in their communities. Our support is also tailored. Everything we offer allows people to realise the things they want to achieve.
U3A (University of the Third Age)
U3A is a UK-wide movement which brings together people in their ‘third age’ to develop their interests and continue their learning in a friendly and informal environment. The third age is a time after you have finished working full-time or raising your family and have time to pursue your interests or try something new. Our members draw upon their knowledge and experience to teach and learn from each other but there are no qualifications to pass – it is just for pleasure. It's all voluntary; a typical U3A will be home to many activity groups covering hundreds of different subjects - from art to zoology and everything in between.
Campaign to End Loneliness
We help people to maintain and create personal connections in their later life. We draw on research and inspiration from across the country to offer information and ideas to both individuals and those working with older people. We deliver projects and campaigns with a range of other organisations. Together, we aim to end loneliness in older age.