(Last updated 15th March)
The novel coronavirus illness called COVID-19 will impact all of us. We are very aware though that older people are more vulnerable to COVID-19, so we are closely monitoring the situation. Looking ahead, the well-being of those who take part in Silver Sunday, whether as guests, volunteers or organisers, will be our priority.
For official information and guidance, the latest updates can be found at:
Here are some additional helpful resources for those working or in contact with older people:
With protection of the most vulnerable, particularly older people, being key to the Government’s strategy, it is even more important than ever to raise awareness of the challenges older people face around social isolation and loneliness. We will be working with our many partners around the UK to adapt our call to action in 2020.
Impact on Silver Sunday
At present it is too early to say how the coronavirus will affect this year’s Silver Sunday. We know how much of a difference Silver Sunday makes to tens of thousands of older people every year. We are therefore looking at new ways of increasing the impact of the day without placing any of our event guests – and indeed the organisers and volunteers – at unnecessary risk.
We know that a number of Silver Sunday events have already been planned, and that many of our regular guests will be looking forward to attending activities. Current Government modelling indicates that by October we may be past peak isolation restrictions. We will monitor their advice and update this page accordingly.
If your Silver Sunday plans have changed due to the coronavirus or if you have any questions regarding organising your event this year, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How can we help manage the impact of the coronavirus on older people and vulnerable groups?
We are deeply concerned about the potential impact the coronavirus will have on our older population and hope that communities will be mobilised to support their local neighbours, family and friends through this challenging time.
Everyone can help in small ways, including:
- Pick up the phone to older relatives more frequently
- Check on your neighbours and offer to pick up any groceries and medication or run errands
- Post friendly cards or send friendly texts and emails (remember to be careful about posting things through letterboxes)
- Tell people you’re there and that you care
- Set up local community groups to support each other
As always, we urge everyone to think about older people and be compassionate, kind and considerate towards them. We believe in the power of communities. By coming together, we can all help to make sure all our older neighbours, family members and friends are safe and looked after.
They may be feeling particularly isolated and anxious as a result of measures to protect you from the coronavirus. Even if you haven’t spoken to someone in a while, this is an important time to let them know that you are there for support.
We are also well aware of how resilient, imaginative and adaptive our communities. We would love to hear any stories or tips you have during a time of social distancing on keeping the cupboards stocked, community meal sharing and embracing new technologies to keep social contact alive. These may be post-war meal solutions or ideas your grandchildren picked up from friends at school. We’d love to hear them and share them more widely.
Here are a few home-based activities from Silver Sunday to get you started:
- Silver Sunday Quiz
Create a quiz that could be emailed/posted out. It could be about the local history of your area, music, films – anything you think they would be interested in!
- Gardening activities
Encourage them to be active in their gardens and share tips, photos of their outdoor spaces and indoor plants.
- Movie night
Check what films are available (either on freeview television or online) and plan to watch it at the same time. Follow up afterwards over the phone or by group text chat to talk about it.
- Home exercises
Create a handout with ideas for keeping active when at home, such as stretches or movements they can do safely in a chair.
- Book Club
Create an online book group to discuss recommended books.
- Set a craft challenge
Create a simple craft activity which could be sent or emailed to your guests. A crochet or knitting project or drawing/photography challenge would work well – make sure there is a prize for the winner!
- Home bake-off
Recreate the ‘technical challenge’ and share photos of the results.
- Make cards
Ask local school/nursery youth groups to create cards or letters to send older care home residents.