The Welsh government has announced the launch of its first loneliness and isolation strategy.
The Connected Communities strategy, backed by £1.4 million over three years, will support community based organisations to deliver and test out, or scale up, innovative approaches to tackling loneliness and social isolation.
A recent national survey found that 16% of the Welsh population aged 16 year and over feel lonely – with younger people more likely to feel lonely than older people.
The strategy is seen as the first step in helping to change how people think about loneliness and social isolation.
It has four priority areas:
- Increasing opportunities for people to connect
- Improving community infrastructure that supports connected communities
- Cohesive and supportive communities
- Build awareness and promote positive attitudes
Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services, Julie Morgan, said: “Loneliness and isolation are feelings that can touch us at any age and any stage of our life. From a young person moving away to university to an older person caring for a loved one.
“Whilst Government alone cannot solve these issues, we can help foster the right conditions for connections within communities to flourish. We need to change how we think and act upon loneliness and isolation within government, public services, businesses, communities and as individuals in order to help tackle these issues.”