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January 18 2018

Elderly: the creation of a Minister for Loneliness in the United Kingdom is an alarm bell

Enabling in Europe protection networks against social isolation and favour alliance between generations. The experience of the programme "Viva gli Anziani" ("Horray for the Aged!") and the movement of the Youth for Peace

 
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The appointment in the United Kingdom of the Minister for Loneliness - to take into account as a significant sign of attention to the problem - is showing one of the biggest themes that Europe needs to address thinking about its present but mainly about its future. The social isolation that transversally hits young and older generations has been taken into account by London as the government has had to consider this almost as an illness due to the effects it causes. We can think about the many forms of depression and other pathologies connected to the phenomenon, many of which are common, but actually worsened by loneliness. In the UK statistics say that there are 9 million people living in isolation, and 2 million live alone (with 200 thousand older people who don't see anyone for weeks).

The Community of Sant'Egidio wants to launch an appeal to not undermine the problem of loneliness and suggests to fight it by creating networks of protection against social isolation. Loneliness is not just an issue in old age, but it affects also much younger generations. It is significant then in this light, the actions of the movement of Youth for Peace of the Community of Sant'Egidio. These young people have a direct contact with the elderly: an alliance between generations from which the whole society benefits.


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