Older guests from our Bathgate and Livingston groups were visited by some special guests at their tea party on August 28.
Dogs from the charity Give a Dog a Bone came along to meet older guests and volunteers from the group and join them for the afternoon.
Contact the Elderly aims to alleviate feelings of loneliness and social isolation amongst older people. We organise free, monthly Sunday afternoon tea parties for people aged 75 or over who live alone. Much more than tea and cake, the tea parties are a way for people to connect with their community, make friends and socialise.
Studies have proven the company of an animal can help reduce feelings of loneliness and encourages exercise and socialising when dog walking.
The older guests were thrilled to have the extra company during their tea party and spent their time petting the dogs and getting to know more about the work of Give a Dog a Bone. The charity aims to give homeless animals a loving and safe environment to live while also tackling loneliness amongst older people.
The tea party ended with a visit from one of the dogs helped by the charity. Carmen was a stray dog that, through the network of the charity, found her forever home.
Morna O’May, Head of Service Scotland, said: ‘‘It was a delight to be joined by Give a Dog a Bone at our August tea party. At Contact the Elderly we aim to signpost other helpful charities that our service users might be interested in.
‘‘For many of our older guests, coming along to our tea parties is the first step which gets them back into the community and reconnects them with other helpful charities and organisations. Having the dogs as extra guests was a pleasure and they definitely stole the show!’’
Contact the Elderly has over 670 groups across England, Scotland and Wales. To find out where your local group is and how to get involved, see our map of locations here.