‘Check on older people during Christmas period’ – Clarke

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Tuesday, December 24th, 2013
Local Alliance Councillor Patrick Clarke is urging people to look out for older family members and neighbours this Christmas festive season and over the winter period. Speaking to Newry Times, Clarke stated, “At Christmas there are many older people particularly in rural areas who will be spending the holiday season alone due to no family or close neighbours. “By calling in with older people and spending a little time with them can make all the difference at this time of year. Older people, and people who are ill, are particularly vulnerable during cold weather. “We all have a role to play in remembering the needs of friends, relatives and neighbours who could be at risk especially at this time of year as we approach Christmas festive season,” Clarke explained. “Ways people can help include checking on neighbours to make sure they are well, making sure they’re warm enough and helping them stock up on food. For many older people winter means loneliness, poverty and ill-health. Call in and help older people stay warm and well this winter. “While families are pulling crackers, opening presents and enjoying their Christmas dinner, the festive period can be a time of dread for some people, especially for people who are on their own as it can be the worst possible time. Clarke added, “Isolation is a big issue, and when the weather closes in some people are reluctant to go out in the evening. Christmas can be a difficult time, reinforcing feelings of loss and loneliness. I would appeal to people to think of neighbours and vulnerable people in the rural community who are most in need during the Christmas and winter period.”
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