Lubrizol staff post positive messages to pensioners this Christmas
There are few things nicer than receiving a letter in the post and colleagues at one firm have been putting pen to paper to help combat loneliness over the festive season.
Staff at various Lubrizol sites including Derby and Huddersfield decided to take part in an initiative called Give a Few Words, which provides letter writers with the name of someone who would appreciate some post and positive messages.
More than 35 letters were drafted within 24 hours at the company and colleagues also sent in drawings, photographs and Christmas cards for the recipients, who all live in care homes.
The community engagement programme comes after a recent survey reported that more than nine million people in the UK say they are often, or always, lonely.
Chris Hart-Jones, from Lubrizol, said: “Feelings of loneliness and isolation are always more pronounced at Christmas but in the midst of a pandemic it’s going to be even harder for people in care homes or those that live alone.
“I thought we could spread some spontaneous Christmas cheer by writing letters and I was really surprised by how many people at Lubrizol were willing to take the time out to do it, especially at this busy time of the year.
“We were given a list of first names with a few details about hobbies and so on, so we could ensure we were writing something that might interest the recipient. I noticed a man named Paul who was a Manchester City fan, so I thought I could chat to him about football in my letter.
“It’s a brilliant concept especially because the recipients are probably of an age when receiving letters was the only way to communicate. And we actually had staff saying how much they had enjoyed writing their letters – it’s not something we tend to do so often anymore.”
The Give a Few Words initiative was launched during the first lockdown, following a request from a care home whose residents felt isolated because they were unable to see their family and friends.
As the nation prepares for a Covid Christmas, celebrated in small bubbles, those living in care homes are likely to feel even more cut off from family and friends.
Chris added: “I think this is a scheme that Lubrizol will continue to support in the New Year, so it will hopefully bring some cheer all year round to those people who might need to know that someone is thinking about them.”