A Lonely Epidemic
Loneliness is a serious problem in the world today, and can lead to many other stresses, such as depression and anxiety. I specialize in working with older people, and have worked at many care homes and residential schemes. I also take my storytelling into prisons, where the problem is much worse due to the circumstances prevalent there, especially during the current Covid crisis.
OF ADULTS FEEL OCCASIONALLY OR OFTEN LONELY
OLDER PEOPLE ARE SUFFERING WITH LONELINESS & ISOLATION
PRISONERS CONSIDER SUICIDE DUE TO LONELINESS
How we can help Prisons
I love to write and document what I learn and experience through my journey in the fight against social isolation and loneliness in prisons and I hope some of these recent articles can help to educate and build awareness of this terrible problem.
When I visit prison, to meet residents and for a very short period, make their lives a little easier to bare, it seems like fun, but is it really?
Imagine if you will that you are living on the streets. No home, no job, very few “friends”, perhaps an addiction to deal with 24/7. You are relying on people you meet for food, drink, and somewhere to sleep. Life is getting you down because once upon a time you served your country in the armed forces, and were proud to do so…
Recently I visited a local prison to tell the story of the pop group “Queen”. Around 50 men asked to join us in the visits room, and along with some prison officers we all enjoyed the music and the chat.
The story of their success revolves, in the main, around the now deceased Freddy Mercury. This man was an eccentric, but his ability to engage with an audience was tremendous, and his music is legendary…
Today, March 27th. 2019, I have been in London at the conference ‘Addressing the challenges of Dementia in Prisons’, organized by The Alzheimer’s Society.
This topic is very relevant to the work I am developing within the prison estate, in relation to loneliness and social isolation, as the two challenges often accompany each other…
Loneliness, how big is the problem?
Currently the world is suffering terribly from Covid, and the UK is no exception. Every news bulletin, all of the press, the social networks, everyone, is telling the same story. And the result, everyone is worrying.
Now, if you were somebody who is naturally a worrier, perhaps living with anxiety and/or depression, or if you have a more complex mental condition, how can you possibly not worsen ?
If you cannot see this problem is going to go on for a long time yet, please ask yourself, why not.
How I Express Myself
One of my favourite ways to express myself and also help to teach and educate is through Poetry. This is something i take with me into prisons and communities and often host workshops.
I went to prison yesterday
Walked straight in, and right away
I noticed men walking around,
As if they had no sense of sound.
Today is Saturday, family day, when I get to see my children again.
My wait has been long, over two years, and yet, the day is now,
Do I have a regret ?
Well yes I do, that addiction was new, but drugs ? Oh no
That was a long time ago.
Proudly supporting Aoife's Bubbles
Aoife’s Bubbles are a dedicated Childhood Cancer Charity that aim to raise awareness of Germ Cell Cancer in children. This type of cancer is rare in children, and therefore it is so important to raise as much awareness as possible. Aoife’s Bubbles provides joy and support to the families and children who have been affected by Germ Cell Cancer.