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RESEARCH by charity the Women’s Royal Voluntary Service has revealed the extent of loneliness amongst older people in Scotland.

More than a quarter of Scottish older people are lonely. Nearly one in five of over 75 year olds, who live alone, are housebound due to poor health.

In some cases (five per cent of Scottish over 75s who live alone) older people do not speak to anyone for days at a time.

Nearly a fifth of the country’s over 75s who are lonely, said they have lost their confidence with 25 per cent saying they now suffer from depression.

This level of loneliness is not only shocking but it’s also preventable.

WRVS offers services such as befriending, where a volunteer visits an older person in their home, community transport, which helps people get out and about and stay independent and social clubs.

If you’re interested in volunteering with WRVS or would like more information about our services, go to or call: 0845 600 5885.

Margaret Paterson

Head of WRVS Services in Scotland