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Local organisations are joining forces with a campaign to end loneliness to encourage people to hold a Big Lunch or Great Get Together event this June.

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Campaign to End Loneliness is part of the #50000reasons campaign which was launched last year with the aim to reduce loneliness within Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

Communities can hold these events to share food, have fun and are a great way to bring neighbours together and reach out to members of the community that might be more isolated.

Statistics suggest that around 50,000 older people who live alone across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough may be at risk of loneliness. Being lonely can have a serious impact on someone’s health, with research showing that lacking social connections is as damaging to our health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day. So these events in communities are a great way for people in isolation to meet new people.

Here’s how to make it happen:

  1. When will you hold your event? The Big Lunch is held 1–2 June and The Great Get Together is held 21-23 June. However remember community events can be held any day of the year!
  2. Decide where to hold your event – Why not organise a street party, sports day, BBQ, picnic or a coffee morning.
  3. Get some support – Don’t think you have to run the whole event by yourself! Ask other members of your community to get involved and help plan the event.
  4. Send the invites out!
  5. Are you planning to have food? – Make the food as simple or fancy as you want and don’t forget to ask people attending to bring something.
  6. Enjoy your event!

For information on how to get involved and make your event happen visit The Big Lunch and Great Get Together websites:

The Big Lunch: https://www.edenprojectcommunities.com/thebiglunchhomepage

The Great Get Together: https://www.greatgettogether.org/

Dr Katharine Hartley, Public Health Adult Mental Health lead for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough said “Loneliness can have a serious impact on someone's health. Our Cambridgeshire and Peterborough campaign to end loneliness is to encourage people to hold events in their community to build stronger relationships and to get to know each other better. Communities play a big role in helping someone who is living in loneliness as they are often excluded from opportunities and events.”

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