A PENSIONER who has struggled with loneliness over the years was overwhelmed with emotion when a TV presenter surprised him with a Christmas tree.
Terrence, 78, had told viewers during a previous appearance on a BBC One Breakfast show that he had spent Christmas Day alone for the past 20 years.
The programme then took matters in their own hands with presenter Dan Walker surprising him with a Christmas tree. The pensioner wept as students from Oldham College explained that they wanted to do something very special for him where he was then led outside while the college’s choir sang Silent Night outside his door.
Viewers at home sobbed at the pensioner’s emotional response to the tree and Walker later tweeted that he was also “having a little moment”.
Gary Lineker tweeted “this is joyous”, while Gabby Logan wrote: “This is wonderful and when you finish shedding a tear head to Age UK’s website. It’s really easy to make a donation.”
Thankfully, Terrence will be spending Christmas with a 90-year-old woman with dementia this year, a friendship he made whilst working as a volunteer with the charity Age UK Oldham.
Loneliness is one of the most pressing issues facing older people and it can have a serious effect on their health. According to Age UK, more than 2 million people in England over the age of 75 live alone, and more than a million older people say they go for over a month without speaking to a friend, neighbour or family member.
Someone who is lonely probably also finds it hard to reach out as there is often a stigma surrounding loneliness and older people tend not to ask for help because they have too much pride.
A simple conversation or smile can change their entire day, so we at Euro Weekly News encourage our readers to check on your elderly neighbours, strike up a conversation on the street, or even volunteer at organisations that support older people.
— BBC Breakfast (@BBCBreakfast) December 11, 2019