Lawley Bank Court exterior and gardens

View articles by topics

Call on me: Lockdown phone friends meet for the first time

11 February 2022

A Telford retirement living resident and telephone befriender who chatted during lockdown were delighted to finally meet in person last week.

Marketing Officer Kirstie with resident Harold at Lawley Bank Court, Telford

Harold, 88, and volunteer Kirstie, 26, have spoken once a week for more than a year as part of Sanctuary Retirement Living’s Befriending Programme. Despite the 60 years between them, the pair hit it off from the start, and a great friendship formed.

The pair were thrilled to meet in person when Kirstie, a Marketing Officer for Sanctuary Supported Living, travelled from Worcester to meet Harold at Telford’s Lawley Bank Court, a retirement community with private apartments, communal facilities, and onsite support for over 55s.

Kickstarted at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, Sanctuary Retirement Living’s Befriending Programme aimed to connect Sanctuary’s residents with members of staff, based on shared interests. With the rising impact of social isolation on health and well-being, the regular phone calls offer a chance to reduce residents’ feelings of loneliness and increase their support network.

Harold said: “Talking to Kirstie was a welcome distraction during the pandemic. The winter lockdowns were more difficult because of the weather, and the Wellbeing and Inclusion Assistants here had to suspend the usual group activities.”

Kirstie added: “Since speaking to Harold, Friday is one of my favourite days of the week because I can catch up with my friend. He’s got some stories to tell! It was wonderful to hear them in person.”

Sanctuary Retirement Living is committed to supporting residents and launched its Your Home Your Life campaign designed to make sure residents are supported to lead independent and healthy lifestyles in an environment which encourages social connections where true friendships can be made. Lawley Bank Court offers comfort, independence and peace of mind - everything needed to enjoy a happy, fulfilling retirement.

To find out more about life in Sanctuary Retirement Living’s retirement properties, read about our communities, or search for a property near you.

Download a PDF version (PDF 165KB) of this story.

Back to news and events

Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share via Email More Share Options