We have created a handy timeline to capture some of our work on loneliness and health over the last 15 months, gathering most of our briefings, blogs and presentations onto this one web page. We hope this will encourage and support voluntary health organisations to prepare their own responses to the Scottish Government draft strategy: A Connected Scotland: Tackling Social Isolation and Loneliness and Building Stronger Social Connections . The closing date for consultation responses is 27th April 2018.
February 2018: VHS’s initial commentary on the draft SG strategy How do we enable a more connected Scotland?
January 2018: VHS promotes the launch of the Scottish Government’s draft strategy and associated engagement events: A Connected Scotland. VHS produced a briefing based on all of the evidence and information we have gathered through our research and engagement since our 2016 Annual Conference, Loneliness a Threat to Health. The briefing was used to inform MSPs before their Parliamentary debate – Building a Connected Scotland Together, where VHS and a number of our member organisations were recognised for our contributions on the issue of loneliness and social isolation.
November 2017: VHS develops a summary briefing Loneliness and Social Isolation – 1 year on. The aim of this briefing is to collate information about all the main activity on loneliness and social isolation that had been going on since the announcement of an intended strategy.
July 2017: VHS highlights publications containing useful ideas for the Scottish strategy:
Churches, Isolation and Loneliness Conference Report May 2017 Faith in Older People, Church of Scotland Guild, with Action of Churches Together in Scotland
Inquiry into loneliness and isolation consultation responses 2017 The Welsh Assembly
Loneliness and suicide – international comparisons 2017 Samaritans Scotland
Loneliness and the aging population IBM Institute for Business Value
June 2017: Action On Elder Abuse’s blog argues that loneliness among older people puts them at risk of harm and abuse: Loneliness As A Risk Factor for Abuse
May 2017: Claire Stevens, Chief Officer at VHS, blogs on the development of A National Strategy to Tackle Social Isolation and Loneliness and Glasgow Caledonian University Masters students work with VHS to come up with four different approaches to developing A social marketing approach to loneliness
April 2017: Scottish Government holds its first stakeholder event on developing a national strategy, with VHS’s Chief Officer Claire Stevens giving the opening presentation: Kinder, More Social Communities . The Scottish Government publishes a summary of the event: Readout of Key Themes
March 2017: via a blog, Claire Stevens, Chief Officer at VHS, discusses loneliness and older people, sharing the presentation she gave at the Holyrood Events conference on the same subject: Loneliness Is A Hard Slog
February 2017: Key messages from Voluntary Health Scotland’s Gathering Loneliness Seminar 2017 – reporting on a seminar that engaged third sector and Scottish Government in an early discussion to explore what the national strategy needed to address:
November 2016: Key messages – Loneliness a Threat to Health – reporting on VHS’s annual conference, which took as its theme: Loneliness, A Threat to Health. Ahead of the conference, VHS publishes a Loneliness Briefing Paper which set out some of the evidence for loneliness being a health issue. Salvesen Mindroom Centre blogs on Loneliness and Young People with Learning Difficulties and Kiren Zubairi, Policy Engagement Officer at VHS, explains why Social Prescribing Equals Social Connectedness
For more information or to contribute to this work, contact our Policy Engagement Officer: Kiren Zubairi