Around the world amazing individuals and initiatives are actively tackling loneliness – actually many of them go way beyond helping people cope with loneliness, they create communities, gathering places, colourful materials and enable in-depth human connection across all sorts of obstacles and boundaries. Here we're attempting to shine light on some of the powerful stories, innovative ideas, latest research and success stories, which we consider relevant for everyone, who is working towards a more human-centric world.
How about raising awareness for loneliness and at the same time breaking a world record?
This is exactly what the „Dear Loneliness“-project is attempting. They are gathering letters written by individuals across the globe - all addressing their own experiences with loneliness.
While still millions of people are experiencing social distancing and isolation due to COVID-19, we admire the creative approach to unite people around their shared feelings and thoughts.
Check out this incredible art project and don’t hesitate further - it’s time to write a letter yourself!
All around the world journalists, panel experts, politicians and initiatives are picking up the same comparison - „loneliness is as damaging to your health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day.“
While many are using this statement, very few actually know where this claim is coming from. Indeed the statement is true and is based on a meta-analytic review by Julianne Holt-Lunstad.
The publication highlights the influence of social relationships on risk for mortality and how it is comparable with well-established risk factors like smoking.
You can find the publication here:
How do you take care of your well-being?
If you lack ideas on how to increase your own well-being or the well-being of others, than the Wheel of Well-being might offer some inspiration.
It presents a broad variety of activities and background to improve your happiness and health.
The Wheel of Well-being was created in 2008 and is guiding not only individuals, but communities, companies and teams all over the world. Check it out here:
Today illustrated for us one of the advantages of digital events - we've been able to join a perfectly curated launch event by the Australian peak body "Ending Loneliness Together" and were happy to hear another strong call for collaboration to tackle loneliness.
Enjoy reading through their new white paper, which offers a country-specific overview, specific recommendations to address loneliness and steps towards action.
Thank you once again and we're looking forward to collaborate in the future!
„Communities feel magical, but they don’t come together by magic.“
This is one of the guiding principles of People & Company and a sentence you’ll hear very often, when listening to their podcast „Get Together“ - a podcast which is all about how ordinary people built extraordinary communities.
We’re currently binge listening through their episodes and their values and stories deeply resonate with our vision for the Togetherness Hub.
Join Bailey Richardson, Kevin Huynh & Kai Elmer Sotto, while they offer a sheer endless amount of experience, on how to establish meaningful connections between people and how to grow these connections to real, long-lasting communities!
Find the podcast here or on the typical platforms:
"Loneliness is one of the greatest public health challenges of our time", Theresa May said in 2018, when she launched the first national & cross-governmental strategy to tackle loneliness in the UK.
This is a statement, which was made at a point in time, when no one could foresee the drastic impact of COVID-19 and how it would change the social fabric within our societies.
With social distancing measures in place around the globe, we suddenly start to have a long overdue conversation about loneliness.
One thing surprises us though - again and again it is being highlighted during panel discussions and expert interviews, that the UK has a loneliness minister appointed.
We rarely pick-up any reference to the national strategy and how elements from it could be applicable for other countries, which neither have a minister for loneliness, nor a strategy in place.
Enjoy digging into the policy paper "A connected society: a strategy for tackling loneliness" published by the UK government!
Find it here:
Another exciting event coming up!
Ending Loneliness Together will officially launch as the first peak body for loneliness in Australia on November 26th.
During the launch event you can expect insights on the latest research on loneliness from Australia, strategies on how they plan to take action and of course new perspectives.
We’re happy to see this initiative grow stronger, especially since they have a strong evidence-based approach and talented individuals behind the curtain, who are working tirelessly to create collaborative impact.
Don’t miss the chance to register for the event and join the conversation!
Get your free ticket here:
Another podcast for wellbeing advocates and everyone who wants to understand the spark behind powerful human connections - the Sidewalk Talk Podcast by Traci Ruble.
Traci has been around from the very beginning of our journey. She not only took part in the brainstorming, which led to the name „Togetherness Hub“, but additionally provided a continuous flow of advice & knowledge.
Who is she and why should you listen to the podcast?
Traci is the founder of Sidewalk Talk, a global human connection project, where over 7.000 listeners sit on sidewalks in over 92 locations across 15 countries offering to listen about anything and heal our lonely and divided world.
Of course COVID-19 makes it difficult in most places to gather by the sidewalk and engage with strangers, but you can listen in, while Traci and her guests reveal the magical ingredients of this wonderful dish, we call connection.
There are almost 50 different stories waiting to be explored!
Find the podcast here or on the usual platforms:
Have you ever wondered if a public space or an office could help people overcome loneliness or prevent it in the first place?
Today, we would like to share a report with you, which offers rare insights on how our built environments can drastically impact urban loneliness.
With the report „Kinship in the City“, the Future Spaces Foundation invites everyone of us to get a better understanding on how architects, city planners and designers can shape spaces and buildings, which foster togetherness and connection.
But the potential of this report reaches further than advising the beforehand mentioned professionals - it is beautifully illustrated and allows a fresh perspective on how public and private spaces could be reinvented and contains recommendations, as well as use cases, for more inclusive city developments.
Prepare to get your heads filled with new ideas & tangible pathways into a future without chronic loneliness.
Check out the report - they also have a lovely video!
Credits for this vivid illustrations go to Thomas Hedger.
We are absolutely in love with participatory art projects, which allow the audience to be more than just observers and invite them to be creators instead!
Many of them share the power to connect people, who prior to the activity have been strangers to each other.
One project, which completely knocked our socks off, is called „Subway Therapy“ and beautifully illustrates an opportunity to reimagine public spaces to foster interaction.
„Subway Therapy is an immersive and interactive work aiming to help people smile, laugh, and feel less stress.
It's about peaceful expression and being part of a vibrant and diverse community.
For some it's an opportunity to connect, and have a conversation.
For others it’s a way to listen and empathize. It can be many things, for many different people.“
If you’re as amazed as we are and want to know more about the 50,000 (!) sticky notes which have been put on the walls of Union Square NYC in 2016, check out their website.
Picture credits: Michelle Young @untappedny
We're excited to take part in a wonderful conference, which is organised by the German non-for-profit Silbernetz.
Alongside important public health stakeholders, researchers & initiatives improving the well-being of isolated, elderly people, we'll dive into solutions and service offerings from Germany and other European countries.
We definitely recommend to spontaneously jump into this free conference and listen to ideas shared by people like Jens Spahn, Dubravka Šuica, Elke Schilling, Paul Goulden & many more!
Check out the agenda and join the conversation - the second day, including our workshop "Einsamkeit weltweit", will be entirely in German though.
Info to dial-in: https://registrierung-veranstaltung.de/silbernetz-login
Did you ever wonder if there are some great podcasts, to get a better understanding of the complexity of loneliness?
Today we would like to recommend the wonderful podcast called "The Lonely Hour" by Julia Bainbridge, which offers you a broad variety of stories connected to loneliness, solitude and social isolation. Julia has created a safe space and talks openly to a broad range of guests about their experiences with loneliness and also puts the spotlight on the joys solitude can offer.
Below you can find more information on the podcast, which is available on the usual platforms.
Also we're in love with the illustrations Julia is using for her podcast - this one was created by the talented Payton Cosell Turner.
There are amazing initiatives and researchers around the world, who help us understand the complexity of social isolation & loneliness.
Already prior to Covid-19 people in later life have been vulnerable to experience severe loneliness and there are solutions & frameworks on how to help them.
The latest piece of the Campaign to End Loneliness is definitely a must-read for professionals dealing with loneliness of elderly people - it includes use cases, research & recommendations for action: ‘Promising Approaches Revisited: Effective action on loneliness in later life’
Click the button for the report:
It's official - since October we're a registered non-for-profit and can truly start to have impact! Born during the peak of Covid-19, we've decided to create a platform, which empowers individuals and initiatives to tackle loneliness even more effectively through collaboration & knowledge exchange.
Having taken the step of registering our first legal entity marks a huge milestone for us and we're ready to take the next steps!
Have you already registered for our community?
Three weeks ago the very first Action Forum took place organised by the Coalition to End Social Isolation & Loneliness. Together with influential stakeholders from the US and international experts, they've been raising awareness and commitments towards tackling loneliness. Not only did they introduce a strong scientific advisory council, but also offered a variety of experts the opportunity to share ideas. We really enjoyed being part of it – thank you for having us.
Click the button for the recordings and agenda (incl. speakers)!