Our team at Good Morning Britain (GMB) ran their 1 Million Minutes campaign in December 2017 to combat loneliness amongst the elderly for the second year running.
It’s a sad reality, but in the UK more than one million older people are chronically lonely, and Christmas and the new year is one of the loneliest times. Yet it only takes a minute to make someone’s day. That’s why GMB launched their 1 Million Minutes campaign to ask viewers to pledge just 30 minutes of their time to support an older person.
This could be as little as making a 15 minute phone call to an elderly person, to actually meeting with them for a few hours every week or month. People signed up to opportunities with our many charity partners up and down the country including Royal Voluntary Service, Action for Children, Age UK, The Silver Line, Contact the Elderly and Independent Age.
Launched by Dame Joan Collins, stations across the world helped spread the word far and wide, including in Canada, Australia, Austria and South Africa. UK politicians pledged their support, along with some familiar celebrity faces such a Felicity Kendal.
The response from viewers and our people at ITV has been amazing. Over 22.7 million minutes were pledged over the month of the campaign. Not only have minutes been pledged, but over 1500 people have already signed up to a volunteering opportunity, committing to spend time with someone lonely.